Kick-Ass: What I thoughtPosted: April 9, 2010
I saw Kick-Ass last night. As it’s a new, much talked about film, I feel inclined to blog about it. I don’t really feel qualified to give an opinion on it; not because I doubt my abilities in reviewing films, but because it didn’t really do anything for me.
You’ve probably heard about Kick-Ass. If not, it’s based on a comic by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. about a guy (Dave Lizewski) who, fed up with being a mild-mannered super-geek, and blinded by heroic visions, buys himself a ski suit and becomes ‘Kick-Ass’, the ass-kicker. Lizewski has no superpowers, which he openly admits at the beginning of the film. He’s just a guy who wants to make a difference. Dave, as Kick-Ass, one day accosts some muggers, the ordeal gets captured via phone camera, and through the wonder of YouTube, Kick-Ass becomes an overnight phenomenon. Kick-Ass then sets up a MySpace account, and becomes the talk of the town. Kick-Ass’ ass-kicking ventures also happen to inspire others to fashion their own costumes, and become super heroes, for better or worse. These others are Damon Macready (or Big Daddy, played by Nicholas Cage), Mindy Macready (Hit-Girl, played by Chloe Moretz), and Chris D’Amico (Red Mist, who is Christopher Mintz-Plasse). Without spoiling the plot, which I actually quite enjoyed, having never encountered the comics before, there’s a lot of fighting, a lot of funny moments, and an awful lot of blood. The film is mainly taken up establishing the creation of Kick-Ass, and his other would-be superheroes. Then, a narrative that has been subtly weaved from the beginning of the film manifests itself properly, paving the way to the final showdown, with the plot creating just enough anger for the showdown to feel satisfying and well-deserved.
As I mentioned before, there’s a lot of blood in the film. You also get to see an eleven year old (Hit-Girl) wielding various knife-based weapons like a pro, shooting people, like a pro, and exclaiming profanities you’d never expect to hear from the mouth of any woman, let alone a pre-teen. It’s pretty shocking stuff, which is quite hilarious at the same time. You can’t blame Hit-Girl for the way she is, being raised by her slightly unhinged and very overprotective father. Cage plays an excellent oddball. I did laugh. There are also some great fight scenes, and a very funny episode with a certain anti-tank weapon. This is traditional old-school superhero faire, presented through a non-conventional narrative. The bad guys are typical, and you can’t help but laugh as their ranks are decimated by out unlikely heroes. The story is also typical. There is a love interest, and Dave constantly assesses and reassesses his feelings on being a superhero. It never interferes with the action, however, and only adds to the narrative This isn’t only a story about superheroes. It’s a story about living out your teenage fantasies, whatever they may be. Yeah, I guess I did enjoy the film, after all.
May I add, as a somewhat geekish side note, I was rather giddy at the inclusion of social media in the film, and the fact that it played such a pivotal part in the film’s plot. That being said, I think part of what spoiled my enjoyment is the amount of time I spent researching the film before I actually went to see it. Don’t watch the trailers. They spoil some of the funniest parts of the film. Also, don’t go anywhere the Daily Mail fiasco about the film supposedly being immoral. That spoiled much for me. Cheers, Daily Mail.
Kick-Ass is a feel-good film that will make you smile, and will make you laugh. If you’re in the mood to do either of those things, Kick-Ass will surely deliver.