Kingsman: The Secret Service ***1/2
Dir: Matthew Vaughn
Starring: Colin Firth, Taron Egerton, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Caine, Mark Strong
Now that Daniel Craig has taken the James Bond franchise into Jason Bourne territory it’s nice to see a less-serious take on the super-spy genre, tongue-(partially)-in-cheek, with gadgets galore and even an over-the-top villain with a mad scheme to change the world.
The main plot revolves around super-spy Harry Hart (Colin Firth) taking a youngster (Taron Egerton) from the wrong side of the tracks under his wing and training him to be a Kingsman (a top-secret spy agency) agent. They then find themselves taking on the mad scheme of a billionaire baddie (Samuel L. Jackson) who dreams of saving the world from itself by decimating most of its population.
Adapted by director Matthew Vaughn from his frequent collaborator Mark Millar’s comic-book (with artist Dave Gibbons), The Secret Service, the movie changes some specifics of the source material but remains generally faithful to it.
Millar, for once, kept his cynicism and facetious wittiness in check and Vaughn also stays true to the spirit of the comic while infusing the movie with generous doses of adrenaline-inducing action, humour and knowing nods to the tropes of the genre. For example, top spy, Harry Hart looks more like Harry Palmer than James Bond and Hart’s boss is essayed by Michael Caine, the original Harry Palmer on screen.
Firth is excellent, Egerton serviceable and Samuel L. Jackson clearly has a great time chewing up the scenery and provides the icing on the cake.
Check it out for a fun time at the movies.
Cut to chase: Fun little spin on the super-spy genre
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