KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | MOVIE REVIEW

KINGSMAN is everything!! I knew I would like it, but never knew I would love, worship it, even. This is where a film gives you some good stuff in the trailer but not too much and then has a gazillion more pieces of amazement in the movie. When I mean everything, this movie never relents in its action, its comedy, its scenes, its budgets, its actors, it is an all encompassing action comedy spy movie that to me is better than Bond. KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE is out February 5th in Australia from 20th Century Fox Australia, it is not yet fully rated but expect nothing less than an MA15+ rating, it runs for 129mins. 

 

KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE COLIN FIRTH THROUGH THE LEGS MOVIE POSTER IMAGE
KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | COLIN FIRTH THROUGH THE LEGS MOVIE POSTER IMAGE

 

I never thought it would be this good, my second 5 Pop movie for 2015 already and what a cracker it is. This movie is why I go to movies, think KICK ASS for an older generation, think a combination ode to old school James Bond and Austin Powers. Think the best slaughter scene on screen since Kill Bill. It’s serious, it’s dangerous, it is freaking hilarious, it goes way way way over the top but it does it with a gentlemanly demeanor in a nice suit and a tongue firmly pressed inside the cheek.

Matthew Vaughn nails this movie, for me, easily his best, and that is coming from (in order) directing: LAYER CAKE, STARDUST, KICK-ASS, XMEN: FIRST CLASS and now KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE. He not only wrote them all, he also directs and produces and he believed so much in this story that he dropped out of directing XMEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST to adapt the screenplay from the comic books created by Dave Gibbons and Mark Millar. His writing is for the current generation but it accommodates both. He probably alienated a lot of people in KICK-ASS with the C-Bomb slinging 12yr old assassin but in KINGSMAN he includes the older generation through the wiseness, calmness and pompous tones of Colin Firth while keeping the younger generation well and truly more than satisfied. He completely takes the piss of the entire spy movie genre but does it while improving on it, taking it to the next level and giving you something that for me was like seeing RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK of the spy genre.

 

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KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | COLIN FIRTH ABOUT TO EDUCATE SOME THUGS

 

The Kingsman are the new knights of the kingdom, they are a secret society of spy’s unto themselves that have evolved from the highest level of tailors throughout history. They dress all the high society in the finest of attire and in all their time have accumulated enough wealth to protect the planet from megalomaniacs. Harry Hart aka Galahad is a senior Kingsman and in his training loses a young recruit who dives on a grenade to protect all the others. Saddened at the loss of this man and the young family he leaves behind he keeps a lookout for them and offers a young boy a medal with a number on the back and instructions of what to do if he ever ends up in trouble. Years later, the boy is a grown up lower society street kid with a dodgie mum and an even worse mum’s boyfriend. He steals a car, ends up in jail and with his phone call, he calls the number and Galahad appears. And so begins the recruitment of Eggsy.

 

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KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | GALAHAD (COLIN FIRTH) AND EGGSY (TARON EGERTON)

 

Besides the strength of the writing and the power of the budget there is the cast and an impeccable cast it is. Firth is outstanding, this is my favourite role of his, so good seeing him a lot less than serious but at the same time still serious, this role was made for him. Samuel L. Jackson is hysterical as the geeky, scared of blood genocidal megalomaniac. I was not a huge fan of the lisp but it did make me giggle a couple of times, he had a lot of fun making this. He had a nice henchman in Nigerian dancer Sofia Boutella as Gazelle, in what could appear as a little take piss at the double amputee murderer from South Africa, Oscar Pitorius, but was from the comic book of two years in which Gazelle is a male. Gazelle is a double amputee and her speed leg replacements are sharpened blades and she is an acrobatic assassin, a nice addition that takes Goldfinger’s Odd Job hat to a new level.

Michael Caine has a smaller but as always impressive role as the most senior Kingsman, it was good to see him fire up and let that accent go full throttle near the end and Mark Strong is a strong supporting character as trainer/ IT guru and administrator of the recruits. Him and Eggsy make a nice partnership.

 

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KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | GALAHAD (COLIN FIRTH) AND EGGSY (TARON EGERTON)

 

Then we have Eggsy, aka Gary Unwin, played by relative newcomer Taron Egerton – welcome the big leagues you hot young thang who is about to be a pin up hero everywhere!! Eggsy basically becomes a cooler James Bond, and he even has a twinkle in his eye. The 25yr old Welsh actor is best known for UK TV show THE SMOKE but takes to this role like a duck to water, not only is he incredibly flexible and appears to do most of his own stunts, he received the role after beating Jack O’Connel and Star Wars’s John Boyega (the storm trooper that opens the teaser trailer), originally the role was offered to Aaron Taylor-Johnson who turned it down – and lucky for you all, you will be enamored with Eggsy.

There is one thing that was odd about the movie, it is inconsequential but my viewing partner, Dan O, asked “why is everyone wearing a wig?” No idea really but good question.

The film also takes the piss at product replacement – not quite as to the side complete “in-movie” ads like Austin Powers but the McDonalds and Guiness spots were funny.

 

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KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | THE EGGSY WINK

 

The movie is a giant hug to men’s fashion – “the clothes maketh the man” is said in the film and they embrace the suits of Saville Row, I think I read somewhere that the cheapest suit in the movie was $1750-. Impressive – I desperately want a suit like these – they are stunning.

The film also has the biggest, baddest and most hilarious slaughter scene since KILL BILL, it is amazing, it is full on kill everything, but it is comical, add to that the end genocidal deaths and you will be in hysterics, I am laughing now thinking back on it – I really wish I could remember Firth’s quote before it starts, it is seriously one of the funniest things I have heard on film. It should be noted I will be seeing this film again and again in the cinema and I am already on the waiting list for Blu Ray purchase from the UK.

 

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KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | GALAHAD (COLIN FIRTH) ABOUT TO SLAUGHTER

 

TO END – the official rules of being a Kingsman Gentleman – take heed men!

“The Rules” of a Kingsman Gentleman are as follows: (1) A gentleman never tells about conquests, private matters, or dealings. His business is nobody else’s. (2) A gentleman doesn’t clash in public with enemies or exes, or worse, with out-of-fashion contrasts, colors or styles. (3) A gentleman is always happy to serve, whether it’s opening the door, picking up the bill, or merely calling a cab the next morning. Ask him for help and he cannot refuse. (4) A gentleman never reacts to rudeness. He pretends he doesn’t recognize it and moves on like it never happened, because it never should have. (5) A gentleman is always on target with witty remarks, interesting facts, and conversation starters that bring the best out of everyone. And (6) A gentleman asks non-invasive questions to keep a conversation going and attention focused on others. He makes them feel like the most interesting person he’s ever met, whether that’s true or not.

 

5 Pops