The sequel to the fun and action packed 2010 movie is also just as fun and jam packed with action to blow you away in terms of superhero battles. It’s a vastly different change up of styles though and you can clearly tell there’s been a change of writer and director between the two which leads to some shortcomings.
This film has Hit-Girl (Chloe Grace Moretz) trying to keep up with the normality of school life though she cannot help but train Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor Johnson) as he wants to keep fit and fighting. The return of Red Mist now with a badder name in both senses of the word causes danger for those close to the fighting pair, though with the help of more vigilante heroes there becomes a proper degree of good vs evil.
‘Kick-Ass’ was an answer to all the other superhero tales with the idea of what would happen if an ordinary person with no powers became a figure for good. It was silly and ironic fun with dark elements and a message that clearly fighting for justice in a costume doesn’t bode well, the sort of moral to stop people doing the same sort of thing after watching it. I was hoping for more of the same style when seeing this sequel at the cinema but in ‘Kick-Ass 2′ however, the ending leaves us thinking fighting for what is right is something worth doing however hard the obstacles may be. The lasting image doesn’t coincide with Dave (Kick-Ass’) voice over. He says you don’t need costumes and masks to protect the city and do good, that you should be who you are but then you see his new updated mask, so that doesn’t fit with what he’s saying, unless he really can’t see a way of walking the streets and fighting evil without dressing up.
This follow up certainly focuses a lot more on Chloe Grace Moretz, which is no bad thing as her Hit-Girl character is the highlight in both the films, though her youth from the first one made the impact of her strong violent sweary hero more daring. The story is simple and uses high school popularity systems to tell the underlying theme of identity. Unfortunately through the school plot and the bitchy plastics you get some pointless add ons that didn’t need to be added on. The whole dance try out wasn’t that called for, Mindy could have shown off her true nature some other way to impress the girls. Don’t get me started on the Union J section which was wrong, stretched out promotional piffle and utterly useless. You do feel sorry for Mindy Macready at one point when she feels the most normal but all along there’s no element of twist or surprise that she will choose Hit-Girl over Mindy, Hit-Girl is who she is. Big Daddy made her that, it’s clear that Macready is actually her alter ego. She’s a gritty ballsy character who didn’t deserve to be handed such poor scenes, the sick stick thing also jumps to mind as something going too far.
The highlights of the film lay with it’s addictive style and pumping soundtrack, it feels crazed like you’ve snorted a heap of coke and put the film on to watch. It’s manic and fast, the editing is slick and quick and the fight sequences are choreographed brilliantly, they are a step up to the set pieces in the original film. The battle between Hit-Girl and Mother Russia is awesome, the police car pile up on the suburban street is down right bonkers and Colonel Stars and Stripes busting a poker game is great.
Jim Carrey brings a layer of brilliance to the role in a film where his gurn face stays hidden and a softer more driven side for justice is shown. The character arc he’s given that mirrors the comic book is brutal and perfect for setting up the fight for good vs. evil. Ignoring Carrey’s choice to step down from promoting the film due to it’s violent nature. he played the gang leader well and has a charm and nicety to him that draws you in. Christopher Mintz-Plasse ramps up the wholly evil sneer and plays it over the top to really become an a-hole.
The final battle sequence could have been bigger and better, Hit-Girl and Mother Russia section aside, more mini fights within could have been shown, girly subplots aren’t a bad thing but when played with such pointless storytelling and a character development not needed, it becomes a random section of the film that takes away from the beginning which feels like the class of the first movie. ‘KIck-Ass 2’ sort of jolts up and down throughout like the director kept switching up styles trying to find out what suited him or the film best. The film is still fun but clearly revels in dialing the violence meter up to 11 and making it more insane than before.
An entertaining, enjoyable film with elements of gold that hark back to the first feature but with unneeded tack ons, excesses of profanity and shock that may fit in the graphic novel but not so much on screen.