Sunday, April 18, 2010

They have come to kick ass and chew bubble gum, and they have just opened another pack of gum. A review of Kick Ass.

Kick Ass.

Cast:  Aaron Johnson,Chloe Grace Moretz.

Writers: Matthew Vaughn, Jane Goldman.

Director: Matthew Vaughn.

*** out of four stars.

(Photo: Lionsgate Films)

Most movies about superheroes are more in the genre of a drama than an action movie.  If you took away Peter Parker being bit by a spider.  What's left is a story about a man who makes a wrong choice that gets someone he loves killed and how he deals with it.  There are no deep moral or deep insighted messages to be learned from "Kick Ass" and that is why it is so damn enjoyable.  Plus it's the first super hero movie I watched that made me want to be one.

Dave Lizewski(Aaron Johnson) is a typical average kid who wants very badly to be a superhero because he is considered by many to be invisible.  He tries to stop a couple of car jackers who attack him but somehow it cuts off his pain sensors.  He decides to use this power to stop other crimes.  The only problem of this descison is that he is just not that good at fighting crime.  In one botch attempt, he gets ambushed by a gang of vicious criminals and is saved by Hit Girl(Chloe Grace Moretz) and Big Daddy(Nicolas Cage). Two costumed vigilanties working on trying to bring down  mob boss Frank D'Amico(Mark Strong) because of a  set up that orginally put Big Daddy in jail for five years earlier.

Director Matthew Vaughn who previously made the underrated gem "Stardust" is back with a genre changing movie that turns the whole notion of comic book movies on it's ears.  There are no internal struggles within these characters, no moral obligations to win.  Just ordinary people doing the right thing when it needs to be done.  The only complaint I had was the addition of a sex scene  towards the end.  It felt like it was just tacked on and never made sense with the characters' progression ealier in the film.    This movie will generate some contraversy about children this young acting in a movie that is so violent.  Yet a lot of these characters are just on the edge of going into adult hood and they have made more significant choices of what they want to do with their lives  than most of us will do in a life time. 

**Note**  Even though the movie is called "Kick Ass" and it's main focus is on that character.  The only one that shines bright is Hit Girl played by newcommer Chloe Grace Moretz. I have only seen her previously as Joseph Gordon Levitt's little sister in the romantic comedy "500 days of summer".   Her character in this movie is both extremely psychotic but also very heart warming and sweet.  She has a love for people who are good and a major hatred for those who are bad.  Plus she is the only one doing most of the ass kicking in this movie.