Film: Review – Kingsman: The Golden Circle

By James

Hello, all. I do hope you excuse me whilst I dive straight into this one. It’s rattled my cage a little and I need to get a few things off my chest. There is a scene in Kingsman: The Golden Circle that has aided the flood of negative reviews this film has received...

The scene in question is the one I’m sure most of you have heard about if you’ve not seen it already. It is indeed crass, sexist and unnecessary. It’s unreasonable to assume that the objectification of women is okay. It’s not. The thing is that it seems to have majorly insulted everyone that has watched it. I, personally, think people are a little taken aback by its vulgar nature, more than anything. There have been far worse examples of women being objectified in films and they were reviewed much more positively than this movie.

Let’s not dwell on it though. You may have now gathered that there is a possibly insulting scene lurking in the film. If you’re open-minded and go in forewarned then it shouldn’t shock you too much. I’m sure you guys have seen worse.

We open with a high-octane, adrenaline-fuelled car chase to the pumping tune of ‘Let’s Go Crazy’ by the late, Prince. The amount of people that have said this is over the top is ludicrous. I thought it was just epic. It’s high voltage brain pasta that takes near to no digesting and is just fun for fun’s sake. Go and see a Bond film if you want spy realism and I bet you’ll still come out doubting whether that was even realistic. This movie is not realism and it doesn’t pretend to be.

What the opening scene does is paint the picture for us – a medley of music, action and off-the-chain stunts that both defy the laws of physics and inherently entertain (provided you’re not too caught up on the fact that it’s ‘silly’ or ‘unfeasible’). I know I didn’t walk into this film expecting a movie that shows off the power of action whilst keeping a lid on the fun factor. Vaughn has just gone for it and had a laugh – with the script, actors and every other aspect of it.

I can understand that it is not as original or clever as the first film, but I don’t think it needed to be. The premise of the first was its sophisticated flavour, whilst being full of action. This one, rightly or wrongly, has gone over to America - so, naturally, the style has gone somewhat ‘off road’. All I ask is that you approach it knowing it has far more of a wild kick to it than the concise prequel. Imagine you’re moving on from a smooth G&T to a Jager-bomb (or 12). You’ve lost the pleasant taste and refinement, but gained an unhealthy abundance of energy and reckless abandon.

I mean: It has Elton John in it, it has suitcase machine-guns, bagpipes, robot dogs, human burgers, electric lassos, Trump references, and countless other bizarre and wonderful aspects that do nothing but tell me to enjoy it for what it is and stop judging it like it should be serious. It’s a spy spoof that has the flair and style of a Saints Row game. I love it.

But anyway, more about the film...

I thought the acting was on point. From Mark Strong’s reserved, spy know-it-all to Julianne Moore’s Lex Luthor-like villain. Taron Egerton is extremely watchable and does not let up on his intense, yet comical, performance from start to finish. His intention and drives are clear throughout and are very easy to follow with a supporting cast that is just as gripping. My only qualm is that some of the cameos and peripheral cast could have been used a lot more and a lot more effectively. There are some big names in the mix that could have added a lot to the film, but they were either palmed off or ignored.

Then we come to the story. Again, it is simple. It’s linear, clear-cut, and follows an obvious path. There are twists and turns like all plots but these are obvious and anyone paying attention will not be taken by surprise.  

It is more the world and concepts that are of interest here. The inherently British spy network meeting the American equivalent is one of the highlights. Each brings their own qualities and each has their own drawbacks - it’s the humour that ensues which is so appealing.

And I can’t review this film without referencing the emotional impact some of the scenes have. The movie is littered with sentiment and scenes that pull the heartstrings. Whether it’s a puppy-fuelled, psychological episode or Merlin and John Denver in a jungle – it doesn’t let up.

I will never be able to listen to that song again...

All in all, it is a colourful emotion explosion. Whether it inspires laughter, sadness, or in many cases anger, you’ll all go away feeling... something...

I thoroughly recommend it.

Thank you for reading and I apologise if I have insulted anyone. I can be a bit hot-headed and opinionated at times (and not always the most informed opinion either). Take no offence, just ignore me or send me a picture of a puppy or something to help me calm down on Twitter @MugwumpBlog

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