How often does a movie come along where the title describes itself perfectly? Kick-Ass married the violence of Kill Bill and the teenage hilarity of Superbad, and the result is one enjoyable romp of a movie.
Adapted from Mark Miller’s colourfully violent comic, the film’s protagonist is a low self-esteemed geeky teen (Aaron Johnson) who harbours the childhood wish of becoming a superhero.
He buys himself a wetsuit online, prepares two sticks as weapons, calls himself Kick-Ass, and then trot onto the street trying to stop petty crimes. But sooner or later, he realises that the real world isn’t as simple as it seems.
Highly-trained and deadly masked-assassins – Big Daddy (Nicolas Cage) and Hit Girl (Chloe Moretz) – are on a mission to kill the town’s powerful mafia boss, and the powerless Kick-Ass is implicated into the mess.
Director Matthew Vaughn (of Stardust) gleefully mixes bloody action sequences and huge doses of humour to entertain the audience. On top of that, a rock-solid soundtrack ups the kinetic energy of the entire film.
The star of the show, decidedly, is not Kick-Ass. Rather, the pint-sized Hit Girl is the one providing all the fun. Her killing methods are undoubtedly brutal but there seems to be this sadistic surprise among the audience that an eleven-year-old girl can manage to come across as both lethal and cool.
The film includes humour, action, romance and even a social commentary on the proliferation of irresponsible social media all into one ass-kicking package – what’s not to like?
While the abrupt shifts in tone from moments of comedy to seriousness are quite apparent, the touchingly-realised father-daughter relationship between Big Daddy and Hit Girl is one moving storyline to behold.
No matter, though, I already can’t wait for a Kick-Ass 2.
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Starring: Aaron Johnson, Nicolas Cage, Chloe Moretz
By Wilson Ng
Kick-Ass opens in cinemas April 15, 2010.