johnkmccubbin91's Kick-Ass review

Great Adaptation of a Wonderful Series

With Kick-Ass 2 hitting cinemas a few days ago I decided to re-watch the first film prior to seeing the new one, as having loved the comics from Mark Millar, I'm hoping that Kick-Ass 2 lives up to expectations, getting into the mood with this film.

Plot

SPOILER FREE

When David Lizewski wonders why no one has ever tried to become a superhero, he himself becomes one in the form of Kick-Ass, but when Big Daddy, and Hit-Girl cause trouble for Frank D'Amico, D'Amico targets Kick-Ass. blaming him for his problems.

Review

This was an amazing film, and one of the best comic book adaptations that I have ever seen. It had a very fun, and humorous tone to it, with plenty of witty dialogue that did the amazing comic script justice. The film also had a lot of excitement, and was brilliantly paced, never becoming boring. It also had a lot of drama, and felt very realistic like the comic tried to be, which was nice. It was also brilliantly directed by Matthew Vaughn, who would go onto direct X-Men: First Class. Vaughn's storytelling in this film was perfect, and although working on the film at the same time as Mark Millar was writing the comics was bound to help, as he'd be able to dive into his thoughts.

The cast in this film was very well chosen, as although it wasn't quite perfect, there are a lot worse actors that could have been placed in the roles. I'll start with Kick-Ass who was played by Aaron Johnson. I loved how Johnson managed to keep the character to his basics, being able to portray this comic geek turned crime fighter in a humorous, and realistic manor. The actor who I was most impressed with however was Chloë Grace Moretz, who just owned the Hit-Girl role, playing this foul mouthed, 11 year old that literally kicked ass. I also loved how there was a small amount of innocents behind her portrayal of the character, whilst still showing how dangerous she really was. Hit-Girl's partner, and father, Big Daddy was played by the legend that is Nicolas Cage. Now I'm a huge Nic Cage fan, but his acting hasn't been brilliant over the last few years, and although this was one of his better performances, I wasn't 100% happy with him as Big Daddy, as he felt a more crazy, than mean, and dangerous. The final cast member I'll mention is Mark Strong as crime boss Frank D'Amico, who was called Johnny G in the comics. Strong is so good at playing a villain, and he showed that in this, being vicious, and sinister at times.

The main star of this film was obviously Kick-Ass, and although he didn't look as weak as the comic book version I felt that this film showed him perfectly. everything from the monologue, to the idea to become a superhero, and beyond was brilliant, and I just loved how it was shown in the film. I also loved how he reacted to his life as a superhero, from the moment he first got seriously injured, until the moment he realised quite how deep he had gotten himself into. Another thing I enjoyed about Kick-Ass in this film was that they spent plenty of time developing him as Dave as well, showing his relationship with Katie Deauxma, and how he socialised with his friends, showing that he's more than just a superhero.

Big Daddy Movie/Comic Comparison

The other two characters that stole this film would be Hit-Girl, and Big Daddy, with Hit-Girl in particular stealing the spotlight of this film. I loved both characters in the comics, and the film portrayed them perfectly. Now I may not have been too happy seeing Nic Cage in a Batman like costume, feeling that it took away from the individuality of the story, but I did understand how this makes an impact. I also enjoyed seeing Hit-Girl, and Big Daddy's ruthless solution to criminals, and their background story although slightly different from the comics was still amazing.

Now not a lot of comic book films take their story directly from a comic book story, usually using certain comic book stories as inspirations. It is however nice whenever you get a comic book film based on a story, especially when they stay true, which this film did. I have to say that besides a few alterations, and additions this was as close as you can get to the perfect close adaptation of a comic book story, and the only film that I can think of that can top it would be Watchmen. There was however one key alteration from the comics that I didn't like, as although it worked well in the film, the comic alternative was much funnier.

Jet Pack Fire

Another thing this film had plenty of was action, as although it wasn't as much as some comic book films, it was still a lot, with each and every scene being dramatic, and exciting. My favourite action scene however would come near the end of the film, when Kick-Ass, and Hit-Girl would infiltrate Frank D'Amico's headquarters, with Kick-Ass entering in a jet pack that was fitted with mini guns, which was awesome. Besides this I also loved seeing the change in Kick-Ass' fighting style, from novice, to good, showing that with practice, even a weak comic book geek could do some damage. It was also cool seeing Hit-Girl running around with her double sided sword, which was simply cool.

Final Verdict

A brilliant film, and although I still prefer the comic, it was a very close adaptation, having plenty of action, and comedy. It also had brilliant character development, and a great story, which was dramatic, and dynamic. Due to this I'd highly recommend this to anyone, and especially if you know how good the comics were, and I for one can't wait to see Kick-Ass 2 now.

Rating: 4/5

2 Comments
Posted by lykopis

I watched this film with no knowledge of the comics and really enjoyed it. Great write-up.

Posted by johnkmccubbin91

@lykopis: Thanks. It is a great film, but I'd also recommend the comics as Mark Millar is a brilliant writer.

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