Director Jeff Wadlow takes the reigns of Kick-Ass 2 following Matthew Vaughn‘s 2010 original. Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Hit-Girl (Chloe Moretz) are back with more gratuitous violence to fight crime on the streets. This time, they’ve brought a few new faces including Jim Carrey as the Colonel Stars and Stripes. The movie finds the characters struggling to figure out who they really are — superheroes or teenagers.
- Director: Jeff Wadlow
- Screenwriter: Jeff Wadlow, Mark Millar (Comic)
- Cast: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloe Moretz, Jim Carrey, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, John Leguizamo, Morris Chestnut
- Cinematography by: Tim Maurice-Jones
- Original Music by: Henry Jackman, Matthew Margeson
Kick-Ass 2 centers on Dave (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Mindy (Chloe Moretz) as they deal with the repercussions of their actions as Kick-ass and Hit-Girl. Not only do they inspire a new wave of self-made heroes but they cause Red Mist to reinvent himself as The Motherfucker alongside his own evil league of villains. Both Dave and Mindy try to live as normal teenagers but can’t resist the call to fight evil. Dave joins forces with Justice Forever, led by a born-again ex-mobster named Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey), which gives Kick-Ass a place to belong. It’s when The Motherfucker sends a message to Kick-Ass by hunting down members of JF, that it becomes apparent that as much as they fight the good fight — evil can return a much deadlier blow.
- Colonel Stars and Stripes: Carrey brings life to an entertaining madman in his role with a notably different sound. He uses another accent and changes his mannerisms to become a wacky born-again ex-mob turned vigilante and it totally works.
- Motivations: The relationships between Dave and Mindy and their parental figures are vital for the themes of the film. Marcus and Mr. Lizewski want their kids to be kids without having to face adult burdens. Dave and Mindy struggle to justify their chosen paths, while promising to stop putting themselves in danger. The way the consequences of their actions come down only heightens the stakes for both.
- Story: The arc of Mindy and Dave becoming an idyllic inspiration for others to become vigilantes brings up the question of whether it’s okay to take the law into your own hands. They started something that has others carrying makeshift weapons and risking their lives against threats they may not be able to go up against. The reality of how the world isn’t a comic book begins to rear its head. Violence tears away at the concept of masked heroes who aren’t bulletproof. Both end up having to accept who they really are. Also, having the courage to take responsibility for the outcomes of every decision they’ve made.
- Christopher Mintz-Plasse: The Motherfucker was played very one-dimensionally with not enough contrast to Red Mist. The kid killed his mother and there was really no range with this character to follow any sort of descent into madness. One tone: Brat. Yes, Chris D’Amico is one but he makes some very messed up choices and has to deal with as much loss as Dave and Mindy. There was nothing in the character to make him a believable villain you wanted to see.
- Relationships: Getting rid of Dave’s girlfriend Katie from the previous film prematurely gave away something that would have been more acceptable if it was developed without being labeled early on. The label hurt the build up to a relationship between Mindy and Dave making it come off as dirty and creepy. It could have been less awkwardly handled.
Kick-Ass 2 was a wild and once again violently entertaining take on masked heroes. It had lots of laughs as well as intense emotional moments. Audiences will go on a journey with these characters and enjoy the action. Speaking of action, Hit-Girl was the notable bad-ass even when she was just teenage Mindy at dance try-outs. And the swear jar was an awesome and hilarious touch to her relationship with Marcus.
The Rating: 8/10
Kick-Ass 2 opens August 16th.
Will you be seeing Kick-Ass 2 this weekend?