MY TOP TWENTY FILMS OF ALL TIME. #14: Kick-Ass

Have you ever wanted to be a superhero? Well this movie shows you that you can be, it’s just that it isn’t recommending you to be one. Dave Lizewski (Portrayed by Aaron Taylor-Johnson) leads the movie as a teenager who wants to be a superhero in his home of New York City. His love for comics and heroes is what encourages him to make a stand for those who can’t defend themselves. He decides to make his own outfit and goes out to fight crime in his city armed with two batons, only to be stabbed and run over within minutes. Unwilling to let that stop him, once recovered, Dave then sets out again to become a crime-fighter (which is helped by the metal plates in his body and his damaged nerve endings helping him now take a lot more pain than before). After he intervenes during a gang attack, Kick-Ass becomes a star online and begins to operate through a Myspace page (Myspace, how we miss thee. Wait, it’s still going? Oh. Ok) so people can contact him for help. One person who asks for help is his long-term crush Katie Deauxma. Dave goes to fight a drug-dealer and ends up overpowered by his gang, but then help comes from two true crime-fighters.

KickAss pic

Hit-Girl (the talented Chloe Grace Moretz) comes to save Kick-Ass and executes the gang in gory style. The 11 year old and her father, Big Daddy, (Nicolas Cage looking suspiciously like Batman in that outfit) then leave the scene, only to find Kick-Ass later. The three form a truce of sorts. Big Daddy and Hit Girl are attempting to take down the empire run by Frank D’Amico (Mark Strong, because only Mark Strong can play Mark Strong). Damon Macready was framed as a drug dealer by D’Amico and this lead to him being imprisoned and his wife committing suicide shortly after giving birth to their daughter Mindy or “Hit Girl” as she is known in costume. The mafia boss is aware that heroes are around and suspect that Kick-Ass is the person taking him down. Frank’s son Chris (Christopher Mintz-Plasse or McLovin if you prefer!), who is also a fan of comics, is given the help from his Dad to make himself into the hero Red Mist in order to trap Kick-Ass and take him down. When Damon “Big Daddy” Macready is killed by D’Amico’s thugs, Hit Girl swears vengeance on her father’s murderers and Kick-Ass finally realises that he needs to be a hero more than ever to overcome this enemy. Some great fight sequences, lots of bullets, a jet-pack and a bazooka all feature in the thrilling finale. Plus a quote lifted from Tim Burton’s 1989 ‘Batman’ film bring the movie to a strong (Not Mark Strong, but strong) conclusion as Dave gets the girl, Mindy gets revenge and Red Mist gets to become The Mutherfucker (But that is more in Kick-Ass 2, which is still a good film too).

When I saw this first advertised, I didn’t know what to think. The advert which had young Chloe Grace Moretz saying “Okay you c**ts, let’s see what you can do now” was enough to tell me this film was not gonna be clean cut. The humour throughout is rather fun and at times can be dark. The outfits all stand out and at no time look too cheesy or out of place. The concept, though maybe not the most original, helps to bring out one of the strongest movies that 2010 had to offer in terms of character growth, enjoyment and re-watch value. Star cast members Nicolas Cage (who gets some great lines in the film, makes me laugh a lot) and Mark Strong (who is mean as hell) do well as the adult supporting characters and Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Christopher Mintz-Plasse are great as the awkward teenagers who really come out of their shell when they don the suits. Mintz-Plasse gets to show a lot of fun as the conflicted teenage Chris D’Amico and only becomes a confident Red Mist/Motherfucker at the end of the movie, though this works well as we get set up for Kick-Ass 2. Meanwhile, the highlight performance has to be from Chloe Grace Moretz as she steals every scene she appears in with such style and just amazes you that her parents would let her talk like that as she uses more expletives than any cast member in the movie. Her emotion is top notch and her confident and hard-headed nature works well with the developing hero Dave Lizewski is trying to become. Top marks to Matthew Vaughn for bringing this movie to the screen with help of screenwriter Jane Goldman and producer Brad Pitt. Also can’t forget Mark Millar and John Romita Jr for creating this work originally as the Kick-Ass graphic novel. Kick-Ass 2 may not capture the same heights of the first, but still give it a watch and let’s keep our fingers crossed that Kick-Ass 3 will come!

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove.

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