I wonder how many idiot parents took their kids to this movie thinking it was some kind of normal super hero film. I won’t even get into the fact that it’s rated R and it’s called KICK ASS, for the love of Pete, but I had five-year-olds all over my theatre. This, for those of you have not read the miniseries by Mark Millar (who also wrote Wanted), is not a normal super hero movie. It…ok, I’m trying to think of another way to put this, but really the only way to accurately describe it (and I’m stealing this from a friend) is Kick Ass is some f@@$ed up shit. Pardon the language, but it’s completely true and we’ll just go ahead and invent the acronym FUS for future use.
The basic premise is what would happen if a normal teenager put on a costume and tried to fight crime? The answer, of course, is that he would get the holy hell beat out of him. My problem with the story, and my biggest problem with the movie, is that Millar (as is typical for him) can’t stick to this premise and the movie can’t decide what it wants to be. Is it a super hero film, action film, comedic parody, satire, or all of these at once? The original premise, which is a lot of fun and a good idea, is totally lost by the time the movie’s over. The overall story is faithful to the comic, but with a lot of little changes that I think actually improve the story.
The movie is completely stolen by Hit Girl and Big Daddy, who are vigilantes that gravitate towards Kick Ass once he goes public with his fight on crime. Hit Girl is an 11-year-old sociopath. Are you prepared to see a cute little girl cut up an entire room full of mobsters? How about watching her father shoot her in the chest while she’s wearing kevlar to make her tougher? Oh, how about watching her get in a fist fight with a mobster who repeatedly punches this 11 year old in the face? If these things may bother you, then I have to refer you to my above FUS summary. These aren’t even some of the weirdest things and they are NOTHING compared to some of the stuff in the comic. I apparently have no problem with all of this because when Hit Girl was onscreen, I loved the film. I love Nic Cage’s Big Daddy and how he adopted this horrible Shatneresque voice for when he was in costume. They completely overshadow the rest of the movie. I wanted more of them.
What I liked: the action scenes were outstanding, there were some truly funny moments, and have I mentioned how awesome Hit Girl is? What I didn’t: pointless crudity (yeah even in a movie like this), the meandering tone of the film, pop culture references that will date it, and some annoying song choices to underscore action scenes. Know what you’re walking into with it, and you’ll have some fun. Most people who do seem to like it even more than I do, but don’t fool yourselves….this is some FUS.