Opera North


31 March 10 words: Helen Gellion
Throwing in the refreshing twist of superheroes with no powers. Kick-Ass makes sure it’s not taking itself too seriously
 Aaron Johnson as Kick-Ass in, urm, Kick-Ass
The superhero franchise has been booming this decade and with the never ending search for the next hero converted to the big screen, sometimes creative ideas are sacrificed for safe big budget movies with special effects. But every now and then you need something to mix it up a bit; we need a movie that’s going to Kick Ass!

Director Matthew Vaughn went the independent route; financially funding this film himself and we're so thankful for it. Throwing a refreshing twist of superheroes with no powers, giving us crazy characters and fantastic action sequences making sure it’s not taking itself too seriously.
Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson) is the ordinary teenager who asks 'Why are there no real life superheroes?' Deciding to take a stand; purchasing a green and yellow wet suit - which I’m sure will be appearing in fancy dress shops soon. Dave’s first attempt realistically lands him in hospital requiring metal plating, a nod to Wolverine, and numbed nerve endings; allowing him to feel no pain.  After recovering, Dave doesn't give up, hilariously patrolling the streets in his costume. He intervenes an unfair fight and a passer by, instead of calling the cops, calls everyone in a nearby cafe to check out the awesome superhero fight, equipped with their mobile phones to record the action. Dave refers to himself as Kick Ass and, thanks to You Tube, an overnight sensation is born.

Chloe Mortez as Hit Girl in Kick-Ass

At the same time Dave sparks the interest of 'girl of his dreams', Katie Deauxma (Lyndsy Fonseca), playing along with rumours he is gay to become friends with her. Wanting to help Katie with an ex-boyfriend problem, dressed as Kick Ass, he confronts the ex and his gang. About to get his 'ass-kicked' he is saved by Hit Girl and Big Daddy in a great action sequence (you will never hear the Banana Splits theme in the same light again!). Hit Girl (Chloe Mortez) and Big Daddy (Nicholas Cage) are vigilante 'superheroes' on a path of revenge against crime leader Frank D'Amico (Mark Strong) - and these guys can fight! Confusion ensues as Frank D'Amico, whose crew is being killed off, looks to Kick Ass for revenge, which introduces our final superhero; Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse); Frank’s son trying to uncover who’s behind the killings.

Constantly referring to the superhero genre, the film holds its own with a realistic take on the story and mixes it with plenty of humour. Kick Ass and Red Mist are a comedy duo whilst Hit Girl and Big Daddy provide most of the action entertainment, with truly creative and exciting action sequences, including a one shot take, slow motion and video game style shots mixed with an original music score.

Christopher Mintz-Plasse as Red Mist in Kick-Ass
Nicholas Cage is on fine and crazy form as Big Daddy. No prizes for guessing who his costume refers to and his impersonation of Adam West whenever he’s suited up is brilliant.  However, it’s Chloe Mortez’s bad attitude eleven year old Hit Girl that steals the show. No doubt the use of graphic violence and language will spark controversy due to her age, but its so OTT adults should appreciate the comedy for what it is; after all this is a comic book movie for grown ups.  Don’t be totally fooled into thinking it’s a full on spoof either, there are serious touching moments too, whilst Hit Girl is thoroughly entertaining the director doesn’t forget that she is just a kid who needs normal life.
For true entertainment this is your film. Its only March and Kick Ass has set the bar high for 2010 films, lets see if any of them can take it on. 

Kick-Ass official website


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