Tuesday, February 11, 2014

One Minute Movie Review: Kick Ass 2

Kick Ass is back as is much of the original cast plus a few new masked faces, however, original director Matthew Vaughn is out, replaced by Jeff Wadlow (Cry Wolf & Never Back Down, & if you haven't heard of either one of these films, you are in good company).   This go round, Kick Ass is not alone in his half ars attempt at crime fighting, rather he is joined by a motley crew of costumed misfits who believe they to can make a difference in the "real" world, including Jim Carrey in his most Un-Jim Carrey role yet.    But Carrey is no Cage, which is not necessarily a bad thing anymore, but for this series it makes a tremendous difference.  Mortez brings Hit Girl back to gloriously violent & profane life while Johnson's performance is a bit more lackluster & superficial. Plasse excels playing a living train wreck, although most of his scenes are played full on tongue in cheek with great success, the dramatic moments that were needed to flesh out his character completely  miss their mark.  By the end of the film,  you definitely long for Strong's sophisticated & delightfully evil quintessential villain from the first movie.  In addition, all the uniqueness, crass, & dark humor of the original is either missing, overreaching, or supplanted with stale, almost silly dialogue & over the top action sequences that are less edgy & more designed for cheap thrills & to satisfy fan-boy cinematic blood lust.   The story is solid, but choppy, so it is not told well & even overtly preachy at times.   It feels as though they tried to do too much in the time they had to do it in.  Overall, compared to the original, it disappoints, but as a companion piece,  it somewhat compliment its predecessor & if you are looking for an amusement ride of a flick, this could be considered a win. I thoroughly enjoy the concept, it is both engaging & entertaining, in a disturbing, almost shameful guilty pleasure kind of way.  The first delivered like a powerhouse, the sequel feels more like a sidekick. 2 out of 5 Kernels: there are some very cool, truly quotable moments, & Mortez rocks, but neither is enough to truly save the day, or this film from failing to reach its potential.

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