“Kick-Ass” fuses extreme violence with comic lore in a striking, yet entertaining, fashion.
“With great power comes great…” Wait, sorry, wrong comic. Although, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that people might say, “Wait, another comic-turned movie?” There has been a slew of them during the last few years. But is that a bad thing? Not necessarily so. The newest rendition of comic-hits-the-big-screen, “Kick-Ass,” is a refreshing, hyper-violent, bloody good time, reminiscent of Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill.”
The plot is simple enough: A less-than-popular teenage male decides he wants to be something more. But, unlike in so many movies, there is no super power introduced in this movie (unless you count sheer luck as a power).
The protagonist, Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson), has high ambitions as he purchases a green-and-yellow wet suit to wear while he battles crime with nightsticks. It goes about as well as one would think. (To all of you out there who think this might be someone to emulate, remember this: Criminals carry guns and knives. Wet suits don’t stop bullets.) Through his insane escapades, Kick-Ass, as he calls himself, vaults into Internet fame as a video of him kicking ass goes viral.
Soon after, he discovers that he’s not the only superhero in town. Enter Hit-girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) and Big Daddy (Nicholas Cage). In a quest for vengeance (now doesn’t that sound familiar?), Hit-girl and Big Daddy enlist Kick-Ass to enact revenge against Frank D’Amico (Mark Strong), the antagonist of the movie. Apparently, he’s a drug lord. Or a crime boss. Or something. It wasn’t made clear, but it doesn’t really matter. His son, however, serves to stimulate the palate, as he is Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), another masked vigilante ready to be adored by the populace. It makes for an interesting dichotomy.
Hit-girl (Mindy is her name is the movie), an 11-year-old, blond-haired psychopath, commands the screen. It’s not often when you get to observe a pre-adolescent spit venomous expletives at everyone she is beating down. Watching her perform a series of neck-breaking acrobatics while reloading her pistol so she can take her next headshot is epic in and of itself. Add onto that the fact that she can pull off a purple wig, and you have a star in the making.
Big Daddy, however, is just plain creepy. Cage is just a freak show in this movie (the porn mustache doesn’t help any), and it’s just unnerving to watch.
Matthew Vaughn directed the film. Critics have likened him to Guy Ritchie, and with “Kick-Ass” now gracing the big screen, it’s easy to see why: There is a certain “RockNRolla”-ish vibe present, although “Kick-Ass” has a decidedly more upbeat take on life.
Admittedly, “Kick-Ass,” in all its blood-splattering goodness, is still a superhero movie. It is based on a comic book. But if you want to see a dude get his ass kicked in hilarious action sequences and a little girl who should be selling Girl Scout cookies taking out crime bosses with finely tuned shooting skills, by all means, enjoy the movie.
However, you may want to bring an umbrella: It’s going to be a bloodbath.
Editor-in-chief Dominic Baez can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Video courtesy of Marv Films