Kick-Ass 2 – Review (Spoiler Free)

Kick-Ass 2Flawed though it may be, Kick-Ass 2 is still a sequel that’s worth watching.

The original film had it’s tongue firmly in cheek as it parodied, paid homage to, and then transcended many superhero movies, however Kick-Ass 2 feels far less sure of itself. Jeff Wadlow’s direction and writing can’t balance the elements of humour, violence, emotion, and storytelling like Vaughn’s could, and the film therefore comes across as tonally inconsistent and less subtle than it’s predecessor.

At times it acts like a straight superhero movie rather than a parodic version of one, what should be emotionally charged moments feel hollow, and there’s at least one questionable use of comedy to treat serious issues. Having said that, Kick-Ass 2 is still an entertaining, shocking, and funny movie that’s definitely worth catching if you are a fan of the first film, it’s just not as controlled; the violence, crudity, and superhero references being turned up to the max, seemingly as a reaction to the intimidating task of topping the first movie.

ChloΓ« Grace Moretz is unsurprisingly a highlight, she comfortably takes Hit Girl to some new places and handles the material very well. In fact she betters it. It’s a shame that her character was written fairly poorly this time around because Moretz clearly has talent going spare here. Aaron Taylor-Johnson does a decent job returning in the role of Kick-Ass, he isn’t giving too much to do development wise though and so is overshadowed by Christopher Mintz-Plasse’s ‘The Motherfucker’, who is a lot of fun to watch as he takes the journey towards becoming a fully-fledged super-villain. The other actor that’s worth mentioning is Jim Carrey; he delivers a solid performance as Colonel Stars and Stripes, but isn’t given enough to play with in order to match Nicolas Cage’s presence as Big Daddy in the original film.

Ultimately the film panders to what it thinks we want, and as a result it often feels a little unoriginal and seems to be pushing too hard, and therefore misjudges several scenes slightly. That said, I had a good time generally with the film. There’s a lot of fun to be had here, just be prepared for a slightly more unintelligent approach than that found in Kick-Ass. It’s very apparent that the true strength of these films lies in Moretz – if there’s going to be anymore films that come out of the Kick-Ass franchise then make Hit Girl the central character.Β  She outshines Kick-Ass in every-way.

Summary:

What is the film’s greatest strength?
Moretz’s excellent performance.

Its greatest weakness?
That Hit Girl comes across as a slightly weaker, more watered down, and conventional version of her character.

Would I see it again?
I’m sure I shall see this one again once it’s released on DVD, but it doesn’t have the same rewatchability that the original has.

Thank you for reading, leave your thoughts in the comment box below!

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26 comments

  1. Good review Rumsey. Doesn’t always work, but when it does, it’s fun, bloody, and very in-your-face, which is how I usually like my action.

    1. Cheers, yeah it was fun – just a shame that it couldn’t have been as sharp and intelligent as the first!

  2. Hit girl was the best thing about the first movie. I havent watched this one yet. Yeah they should do a movie focused on her as the main character like you said.

    1. Well she is great here as well, or at least Moretz is. The character isn’t so strong.
      I think there is a comic book where she is the focus actually so presumably they could adapt that. I would much rather watch that than say a Kick-Ass 3 movie.

      1. Great review. πŸ™‚ I have to say I hated the first one so won’t be watching this. But I have to agree on this: Moretz is great. I’d only maybe watch a sequel if it was based solely on her character. I’ve been very impressed with her as an actress so far, especially in the overlooked Hugo.

        1. Thank you! Well if you hated the first one then you really don’t want to be seeing this one, it’s the same but with more extremes thrown in and with wit taken out.
          Yeah I also am a fan of hers, although I didn’t think too much of her in Dark Shadows to be honest. It will be very interesting to see how she does in Carrie!

          1. Not seen Dark Shadows – looks pretty bad. :-/ As much as remakes piss me off, I have to admit that Carrie LOOKS like it could be very good. I hope they get it right…

        2. Yeah, I don’t know how good I think the film will be, but the combination of her and Julianne Moore (my favourite actress) means I’ll be seeing it what ever!

  3. chrisdsav · · Reply

    great review follow me as I follow you

    1. Thank you, I’ll take a look at your site once I get in front of my computer!

  4. Very excited to see this. Glad it’s at least nothing horrible. But I expected it to be a notch down without Vaughn. The guy’s just too damn good of a director to replicate with someone else.

    1. Well hopefully you will enjoy it. I can see why this film has really rubbed some people up the wrong way, but I felt that there was a lot to enjoy even though it’s clearly not as strong as the original. Hopefully if another film is made he will return to direct it!

  5. I have to admit that I kind of loved it. It really, really cracked me up.

    1. I can understand that, I did have quite a lot of fun when I watched it in the cinema. The question is, do you prefer this one over the first? πŸ™‚

      1. That’s really hard. I think I need to watch the first again.

        1. Well, any excuse to watch the first one again sounds good to me!

  6. theipc · · Reply

    I loved the sequel – it might not have been as original as the first (because it’s a sequel) but I loved it. Loved it, loved it! : )

    Good work!

    1. Cheers!
      I never expected it to be as original because as you say, it’s a sequel. But did they have to do that kiss scene for example? Moments like that just made it feel a little more conventional than the first film did in my opinion.
      Still I did enjoy it, and I’m glad that you clearly did!

      1. theipc · · Reply

        I get that : )

        I was impressed by some of the subtle things. Like when she’s doing her cheer try-out and they do a shot of the bitch-girl in surprise and in the background she’s somersaulting all over the place. Or those pictures of Big Daddy in the background : )

        I want to go see it again : )

        P.S. I did NOT like how he went from a geeky teen to a hulking beefcake… or his hairdo…

        1. I think I missed a few of the subtler bits but I definitely appreciated the Big Daddy nods! I missed Nic Cage in this film 😦

          I wasn’t a big fan of that either, but I guess beefing up is the logical thing for Kick-Ass to do between films, so I let it pass.

  7. Good review, ditto on the watered down hit girl 😦

    1. Cheers, it was such a shame wasn’t it. Oh well, she is still a pretty great character compared to most other women/girls in films around at the moment.

      1. Yeah, need some stronger female characters in these hero films πŸ˜€

        1. We most certainly do! I’m hoping that Natalie Portman may have been given a decent role to play in Thor 2.

          1. Erm maybe look somewhere else πŸ˜€

        2. Haha, fair enough. I’m just a fan of Portman so I’m hopeful for anything that she does!

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