Kingsman: The Secret Service

"Excellent"

Kingsman: The Secret Service Review


With virtually the same tone as they used in their superhero spoof Kick-Ass, filmmakers Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman take another riotously adult approach to pastiche, this time tackling the James Bond genre. Essentially they have made a 007 movie that refuses to tone itself down for the PG-13 audience, indulging in the profanity and excessive violence other films shy away from. So it doesn't really matter if the plot itself isn't quite as rebellious as it pretends to be.

Kingsman is a top-secret spy agency located in a Saville Row tailor, beholden to no corporation or government. Led by Arthur and Merlin (Michael Caine and Mark Strong), these gentlemanly super-agents use the names of the knights of the Round Table. And when one of them dies, they know it's time to get with the times and recruit someone young and hip. So they set up a rigorous school for trainees, with one lucky graduate set to earn a spot at the table. Harry, aka Galahad (Colin Firth), chooses rough East End teen Eggsy (Taron Egerton) as his candidate. The son of a former agent, Eggsy shows considerable promise even if he lacks the expected refinement. Then just before the final selection is made, they discover that mobile phone billionaire Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) is up to something nefarious. So Eggsy and fellow rookie Roxy (Sophie Cookson) kick into action to figure out what he's up to, and stop him.

Despite constant reminders that "this isn't that kind of movie", it clearly is. Every Bond element is here, including the crazed villain with an elaborate lair and a technically augmented sidekick (Sofia Boutella's vicious blade-footed henchwoman Gazelle). The only difference is that where Bond hints cheekily at violence and sex, Vaughn and Goldman go for it. This film is packed with outrageous, over-the-top carnage and intensely rude dialogue, delivered with relish by the expert cast. Firth, Caine and Strong are terrific at combining tweedy propriety with public schoolboy naughtiness, while Jackson merrily plays around with Valentine's god-complex.

At the centre, Egerton has terrific presence as the rough kid who may or may not whip himself into shape. Although he's far too likeable to fail, so his unpredictability is merely another red herring. While everything about this film feels concocted to make the fanboys squeal with joy, there are also some surprises in the plot. And we're also kept off balance by the odd combination of extreme brutality and big comical grisliness. So even if the film is little more than a series of gimmicky set-pieces, at least they're exuberantly entertaining. We're already looking forward to the sequel. 

Kingsman: The Secret Service Trailer

 



Kingsman: The Secret Service

Facts and Figures

Genre: Action/Adventure

Run time: 129 mins

In Theaters: Friday 13th February 2015

Distributed by: 20th Century Fox

Production compaines: Marv Films, 20th Century Fox Film Corporation

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 100%
Fresh: 5

IMDB: 8.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: Taron Egerton as Gary 'Eggsy' Unwin, as Harry Hart, Samuel L. Jackson as Valentine, as Gazelle, Sophie Cookson as Roxy, as Lancelot, as James Arnold, as Dean, Samantha Zoe Womack as Michelle, Tom Prior as Hugo, Jaymes Butler as Dean's Gang member #2, as Church Leader, Neve Gachev as Reporter

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