What constituted a typical James Bond movie in the past ? Few of its favorite elements — sartorial taste, killer toys and cracked-out supervillains, were considered part of the standard template of an over-the-top spy movie. Kingsman tries to portray itself as a satirical depiction of the same, but feels as real as the original Bond movies… and even better than quite a lot of them..
Harry Hart is the Obi-Wan Kenobi to Eggsy (Taron Egerton), a good-natured but wayward kid living in a brutalist apartment block with his mom and abusive stepdad. But his biological father, who died years ago, had a secret identity. He was a Kingsman, and now that Eggsy has come of age (and run afoul of the law), that mysterious group has recruited him for training too.
First things first, so you either get Matthew Vaughn or you not.. And more often than not, you would end up getting him !!
The R-rated “Kingsman: The Secret Service” is a giddy confetti explosion of grey matter, English accents, and about 100+ f-words — all while peppering the audience with humorous, self-conscious storytelling and a postmodern mash-up of the spy movie genre.
The action scenes delight with shock humour. It’s violent, but not gory, ready-made for word balloons reading “OOOF” or “KRAKOOM”. This movie is so alive that few will roll their eyes at the message — one that says a true gentleman’s virtue comes from within, and not their accent.
Whether it’s “Alex Rider,” “Agent Cody Banks” or “Spy Kids,” plenty have tried to adapt the 007 shtick to younger characters, with demonstrably dopey results. In the end, the reason it works for Vaughn is that he’s making the film for adults.
Embracing the notion that “Kingsman” is as much a comedy as it is an action movie — just not in the corny, quippy way that mid-career Bond used to be, makes sure that you see the movie in a whole new light, when compared to the typical spy movie.
So, while seriousness has overtaken the Bond franchise in recent years (hardly a bad thing, mind you), “Kingsman” runs no such risk. Vaughn welcomes details that might seem silly in another director’s hands, such as a bulletproof umbrella or tiny microchips that can make one’s head explode, presenting everything playfully enough that plausibility isn’t a factor.
And of course.. the famous church fight scene..
Utilizing clever scene-transitions, motion-tracked movement, and kinetic editing — this picture has a unique style all its own, that also makes the mayhem easy to follow. Plus Freebird as background music !!
In short, the movie feels like a wonderful blend of “Men In Black”, without the aliens, plus the classic James Bond structure — this feels like familiar and new all at the same time….
I’m with you, Nakul. The real achievement of Kingsman was how Vaughn managed to keep a comedy-action-spy-thriller feeling nice and fresh. No mean feat.
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