KICK ASS 2 (2013) : REVIEW
September 11, 2013
"You don't have to be a bad-ass to be a superhero. You just have to be brave."
Matthew Vaughn's 2010 Kick Ass was my ultimate favorite; it delivered brutality in style, with the spark of reality and boy was it good. Of course, I had my expectation on this sequel, but I tried not to make it a barrier from being objective. Now, directed by Jeff Wallow, along with Vaughn and screenwriter Jane Goldman on the producers' seats, Mark Millar & John Romita, Jr.'s real-life superheroes are back on the big screen with the promises of more bloodshed and gruesome.
Dave Lizewski a.k.a Kick Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) is now living his normal teenage life, but deep inside, he still wants to be in his tights. Therefore, he asks Mindy Macready a.k.a Hit-Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) to join him in his team, to battle the evil in New York City together like Batman and Robin. Unfortunately, now-grown & orphaned 14-year-old Mindy is having a doubt about her identity, having a doubt on whether she should be in mask or living her normal high-school life under the guardianship of his father's bff slash cop Marcus (Morris Chestnut). Being rejected by Hit-Girl, Dave quickly finds himself a superhero-wannabes clad called Justice Forever, led by Colonel Stars & Stripes (Jim Carrey), consists of Marty a.k.a Battle Guy (Clark Duke), Night Bitch (Lindy Booth), Dr. Gravity (Donald Faison) and Insect Man (Robert Emms). Together, they fight crimes in the name of justice. But, a problem occurs as the former defeated superhero named Red Mist a.k.a Chris D'Amico (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) is plotting revenge against Kick Ass for killing his father with bazooka, as the turns side by making himself the greatest and richest supervillain named The Motherfucker and quickly gathers a supervillain army consists of Mother Russia (Olga Kurkulina), Genghis Carnage (Tom Wu) and The Tumor (Andy Nyman). Now, with the battle to the death ahead of him, Kick Ass must quickly set the strategy right and somehow get Hit-Girl in to his team in order to win the battle.
It was enjoyable, I can't lie. The entire 103 minutes were filled with fast-paced actions topped with cringing bloodshed and gruesome, along with bone-breaking martial arts combined with a lot of beating, stabbing, swearing and raping. But I got to tell you this; it wasn't ass-kicking enough. The amount of blood-spluttering scenes presented wasn't exactly qualified to be called a Rated-R movie; it was much less. Another thing, was it just me or the swearing, which was the best part, was somehow limited and a little bit forced, unlike the first one? And I did feel that this sequel felt rather lame with awkward and sometimes corny storylines (though still topped with some crowd-pleasing one liners, especially Moretz's) with bitter jokes and uninteresting finale battle. As for the special effects, it wasn't as stylish and shopisticated as the first one, but it definitely brought the comic book feels by presenting the subtitles in speech bubbles and that yellow thingy on the upper left corner.
If the first movie was a fine realization of a 'real' superheroes, the sequel somehow lost it. I didn't see the lines separating the reality from comic books, though they constantly bringing that up through some of the characters' dialogues. Even the definition of 'hero' itself was vaguely told; sometimes heroes were those who make differences, another times were those who kill out of love. Another thing, the storyline that caught 3 different views from Dave, Mindy and Chris was rather unfocused and blurry. I felt like it jumped back and forth without having a real connection, like the whole thing was divided into 3 different spaces just to be connected meaninglessly at the end.
Again, Moretz shone throughout the entire performances. She rocked the both worlds; as Hit-Girl whose martial art was beyond believable, stunt or not, and as the normal ponytailed school girl who was trapped into a rated-R & puking version of Mean Girls (which surprisingly was the most intriguing part in the movie). If you think TDK's Batman was amazing, then Hit-Girl was supreme. Jim Carrey stole the spotlight in being the Colonel Stars & Stripes (though his character was underdeveloped with too much screentimes to be called as a cameo, yet only few descriptions to not be one). The entire cast of Justice Forever delivered an OK performance, though mostly forgettable. As for the villains, Plasse outdid himself when he appeared as a superhero wannabe in the first movie; in the sequel, he delivered a spoiled rich jerk who possessed no power but whole damn laughable and annoying as fck demeanor. Kurkulina was badass; she worked that six-packs well. But still, if they want to make this one better, they should have stripped all the characters off but Hit-Girl and given her the moment.
Finally said, I like this movie. It was enjoyable, all critics aside. More importantly, it was worth to watch. Recommended.