Spider-Man. Iron Man. Batman. Superman. These names alone are ones you could utter out loud and everyone would know who you are talking about. Kids of all ages have always wondered: what is it like to be a superhero?
The same question plagues the mind of high schooler Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson) who has all the trimmings of a person who wants a more fantastic life — he’s “invisible” to girls, he’s not very popular and he has a very low-key social life. After interrogating his friends as to why no one has ever thought of doing it before, Dave impulsively buys a scuba suit, dresses up, and takes on his first crime fighting situation, which he meets with less than spectacular results. He lands up in the hospital, but upon exiting, he enters right back into the fray of fighting crime, becoming a star on the internet, and dubbing himself “Kick-Ass”
Meanwhile, we are introduced to Damon (Nicolas Cage) and Mindy (Chloe Moretz) Macready, a father/daughter team who are trying to take down mob boss Frank D’Amico (Mark Strong). They follow Kick-Ass and the three “attempt” to work together, even though Damon (alter ego Big Daddy) and Mindy (alter ego Hit Girl) clearly are following their own agenda. However, Kick-Ass does interest a fellow fan into donning his own costume and superhero alter ego, who becomes the mysterious Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) and the four begin to fight crime on their own terms.
Kick Ass, from the trailers, made it look like a comedy superhero movie, one that pokes fun at the genre it draws from. However, while it does do the former, at the same time, it embraces the ideals of the comic book, in that, being a superhero is serious business. Kick-Ass and his superhero partners find no lack of trouble in the real world, and pay for their good deeds with blood, bruises, and broken bones.
Kick –Ass is based on a Marvel Comic book series (under the company’s Icon Imprint) but the movie was financed independently by director Matthew Vaughn (producer of Snatch, director of LayerCake) because no major company showed interest. Why Vaughn had to do that is mind boggling. While Kick-Ass does not boast a big superhero name, in the state that Hollywood is in, churning out one comic book movie after another, you’d think that someone would’ve picked it up.
Regardless of this, Kick-Ass is one fun ride. In fact, I would consider it one of the best comic book movies I’ve seen. Aaron Johnson, a relative unknown, completely wins you over as the title character, and I think it was a good choice to go with a newcomer for this. Nicholas Cage, who lately hasn’t been making a splash at the box office, seamlessly offers comedy and drama to his troubled father figure and superhero. His Big Daddy speaking voice was a Adam West impersonation that Cage specifically put into the role, and I loved every cheesy second of it.
The real star of the movie though, is Chloe Moretz, as Hit Girl. Parents be forewarned-Hit Girl wields weapons of sharpness and those that hold bullets. Those who are easily offended need not apply. Anyway, Moretz is adorably deadly, and every time she came on the screen she owns it as the pint sized purple haired powerhouse. Good stuff.
As for the movie as a whole, I loved it. On a musical note, I though the score was amazing. The soundtrack also gets a thumps up: as Hit Girl takes down a slew of bad guys, Joan Jett’s “Bad Reputation” blasts on. You can’t go wrong with that.
As summer rapidly approaches, most people are looking forward to Iron Man 2, and yes, I am definitley one of those people. But until then, Kick-Ass will quench your comic book movie thirst like nobody’s business. It’s a great superhero flick that I will definitely see again without a doubt.
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