Comic Vine News


Early Review: Kick Ass The Movie

Does this film "Kick-Ass?"

 Last night, Lionsgate gave a private screening of their upcoming film, Kick-Ass (Coming to a theater near you April 16th), to the employees of Graham Crackers Comics, so roughly 20 of us had a theater to ourselves. Thanks to Lionsgate for putting up with 20 " Comic Book Guys" for 2 hours. The thing I've noticed is that other than the internet campaigns and the single poster at the theater, I haven't noticed too much marketing for this film. I haven't seen an ad on tv, nor any where else. It seems this film is only trying to get the comic crowd in and no one else, which is disappointing. Babs also got a chance to screen it and also gave a review. Check her review out for a second opinion. Here's a synopsis from imdb, just in case you're unfamiliar with the comic book or the film:

Dave Lizewski is an unnoticed high school student and comic book fan with a few friends and who lives alone with his father. His life is not very difficult and his personal trials not that overwhelming. However, one day he makes the simple decision to become a super-hero even though he has no powers or training.


The framing for each shot always seems to be considerate of its roots, the comic. It seems that any shot could transition to a panel of the book. In addition, the colors in the film really popped, giving the film a “happy” look with horribly sadistic, ultra-violent undertones. The look is what kept my eyes glued to the screen. It's a very real world with surreal elements. At any point, after lulled into what we conceive as reality, you’re shocked with outside elements verging on the ridiculousness like back-flips with a samurai sword done by an 11 year old with an overly-bright purple wig. The close-encounter action scenes were exciting and a lot of fun. At no time was it confusing or hard to follow. The comedy in this film was agreeable to say the least. Nothing incredibly “laugh out loud” funny, but enjoyable none-the-less. Believe it or not, Nicolas Cage was hilarious in this film, as long as he was in costume. Was he channeling Adam West, Michael Keaton, or Val Kilmer? Who knows, but it kept the audience in tears laughing whether it was intentional or not. 


There are certain songs that are attached, in my mind, to certain movies or television shows. Kick-Ass used two of these songs, during fight scenes, which made it worse. I don’t want to see a well choreographed fight scene and when the music kicks in think to myself, “I wonder if Daniel Desario and Kim Kelly got married after high school?” I know this is an obscure reference, but the second song, which does fit the scene it’s in, is even more noticeable. I don’t want my mind taken away from the film I’m involved with because a few of their selections were staples for other films or television shows. A few other musical selections just didn’t fit the film. The tone was way off. My major problem was that this film was genre hopped. At times, as mentioned, the comedy and action work well, but not together. If you’re looking for that nice genre mixing element that you’ve seen in either Shoot Em’ Up or Zombieland, then you’ve come to the wrong place. They do not work well together. At the same time, this film tries to be a superhero film, but at certain times during the movie it feels like one made for pre-teens, with ultra-violence and swearing, leaving the viewer to feel awkward in their seats. One thing that Babs hit on, which also bugged me, was the relationship between Big Daddy & Hit Girl, out of costume. I get it, the out-of-costume banter is supposed to be loving and caring and have the overly-1950s ideal family relationship. Then when they get into costume, it’s all business. It feels forced and fake. The number one thing that urked me about this film was that Hit Girl kept intentionally looking at the camera after what seemed like every kill. Most of the time, she was looking at someone else, but it felt like she was consistently breaking the 4 wall. Chloe Moretz, who played Hit Girl, was great out-of-costume, but hard to watch in costume. She was always grimacing in the most peculiar way. One last thing, I know the movie is called “Kick-Ass,” but do you have to say it every minute or so? I would guess that it was said at least 30 throughout the film, and not just in reference to the character's name.


The film Kick-Ass has a hard time figuring out what it wants to be. Is it an action film, comedy, love story, teen sex romp, super-hero film for kids, for adults? One minute you're watching a very serious action scene that half-way through turns into a slap-stick comedy bit. At times, it's hard to watch. Sometimes it even felt as though the film was parodying itself, leaving me feel awkward and uneasy. After leaving the theater and listening to other people in the company talk, they seemed to enjoy it. They're all fans of the original comic, and although no one was praising this film as one of the greatest super-hero films ever made, they all agreed it was "a fun time." What more can you expect though? In my mind, this was a terrible comic, turned into a mediocre film. If you like the comic, you'll like the film. If you're like me and hate the comic, you'll put up with the film, but at least have a few laughs along the way and enjoy a fight scene or two.

Final Verdict:

4 out of 10

Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

hmmm interesting, I know what you mean about songs. Movies have to be very careful about the reference. 
great review thanks

Posted by eserrano05

its good never to believe the hype because you end up getting something different from what you expect i'm still gonna check it out good review thanx for the heads up
Posted by adoggez1

i wanna hear wat gman or red lamp thought of the film
Posted by .Mistress Redhead.
@adoggez1: what is InferiorEgo not good enough for ya hey hey ? ;p ;p
Posted by inferiorego
@.Mistress Redhead.:
no, it's not because I'm always angry and complaining. :p
Posted by .Mistress Redhead.
@inferiorego: I think that is why no one replies to my blog... and then they get the staff to make happier threads to stop mine XD lol
Posted by EdwardWindsor

6 out of 10 so better than spiderman3 and hancock then lol ?

Posted by Agent Buttons
Good review
Posted by Jotham

All I ask is that it's entertaining. It sounds like it'll entertain me.

Posted by aztek_the_lost

These reviews seem to channel my thoughts, though I feel like I have to watch it anyways if simply for the want of any status around here, meanwhile the comic book movie of April I'm excited for, no one will be talking about.

Posted by sora_thekey

So it's not as good as it seems... bummer!
Posted by Joe Venom
@inferiorego:   I hated Shoot em' Up but I loved Zombieland.................moving along I haven't seen the movie myself yet but from what I've seen so far (trailers and stuff) it looks like it follows everything from the book so,
For those of us that read all the books will there be any surprises for us when we watch this? Was it weird watching this movie even tho you knew how it would end?
Posted by Emperor Gonzo Noir
@inferiorego said:
"@.Mistress Redhead.:no, it's not because I'm always angry and complaining. :p "

like a true movie-goer
Posted by Vortex13

I'll probably either wait for it to come out a dvd and rent it or wait for it to come on cable and watch it at my parent's home lol.

Posted by Agent Buttons
@sora_thekey said:
" So it's not as good as it seems... bummer! "
for real....
Posted by Vortex13
@aztek the lost: Which movie is that? The losers, because I'm very excited for that.
Posted by aztek_the_lost
@Vortex13 said:
" @aztek the lost: Which movie is that? The losers, because I'm very excited for that. "
of course THE LOSERS! do I not have the word Vertigo attached to my name?
but yes, I'm very excited about the movie, I've loved all the Vertigo movies I've seen so far (V for Vendetta, Constantine) and I still need to see the other two (The Fountain, A History of Violence) but then again I watched both of those before I read the comic, so this will be my first time watching a Vertigo movie after reading the comic so I'll naturally be more critical but hey, so far it looks like it's a great adapation. Looking forward to it! I think Chris Evans was a perfect casting choice for Jensen.
Posted by Vortex13
@aztek the lost: I think it perfect casting too, and I think Jeffrey Dean Morgan isn't a bad choice either. I've so far only read the first two trades but I'm hoping to read the rest before the movie comes out. What I like is some of the lines straight from the comic, like "you're talking about going to war with the central intelligence agency" "they started it." I love that line and some of the scenes they show in the trailer seem very true to the comic so I do have my hopes up for it, I just hope they don't get crushed when I actually see it.
Posted by Bearded Justice

Good review.  Yeah, I thought Cage looked like he might be pretty good in this.  Haven't read the comic, but my friends will want to see it, so I'll tag along for the laughs.
Posted by Decept-O

Good review.  I've not read the comic but am surprised you didn't like it when it seems like most of the Comic Vine staff like the comic but to each their own, right? 

Don't know if I will see this now,  your recommendations have usually been spot on.  I imagine this is a movie that will survive just a few weeks then will go to DVD soon where it will pick up more steam. 


Posted by AngelFrost

 You didn't mention Aaron Johnson's performance. How did he do with the weight of the movie on his very ... handsome shoulders? ;)

Posted by cali00

 Check out the new updated Kick-Ass website!

Posted by Bruce Vain

I had a good feeling this movie wasn't gonna be great anyways. So the rating on this movie and Babs previous review didn't surprise me.
Posted by ComicCrazy

So two of you guys have seen this and your opinion is that if you like the whole concept and whole premise of the comic book you will like the movie ?
Posted by Grim

ive saw a couple tv previews a few months ago, and a handful of Movie previews around the same time. But yeah, i think they decided to dial it back to just the comics community after a while.

Posted by inferiorego
@ComicCrazy said:
" So two of you guys have seen this and your opinion is that if you like the whole concept and whole premise of the comic book you will like the movie ? "
Yeah, if you like the comic, you'll probably enjoy it on the big screen. The other people with me, who liked the comic, liked it. It's not something you'll love or tell everyone about though. 
Posted by DH69

i never expected this to be a iconic comic book movie, as long as it makes me laugh i'll enjoy it

Posted by AirDave817

Great review! I'm still probably going to have to flip a coin on seeing it in the theatre or Netflix...

Posted by expmiracle

  idk wtf this guy is talking about. i saw the movie like in october. the only songs i really remember were the dickies cover of the banana splits theme and an oasis song at the very end. that movie was awesome. the only thing bad about it was cage's acting.    

Edited by inferiorego
Posted by faceless253

I enjoyed the book, thought the movie would be good, but as the reviews come out, I'm worried that I won't enjoy it the way I thought I would. I heard however that there are certain back story scenes that are drawn comic panel style rather than live action and were actually illustrated by John Romita Jr. (who illustrated the book for those unfamiliar with it). Kind of excited to see where he and Millar take Kick-Ass 2. Good review though, very thorough.

Posted by Theodore
@inferiorego:   “I wonder if Daniel Desario and Kim Kelly got married after high school?”    ...probably. Then divorced.
Posted by inferiorego
then back together again