Movie Reviews

Film Review: “Kick Ass”

(Lionsgate. 1 hour, 53 minutes. Rated R for strong brutal violence throughout, pervasive language, sexual content, nudity and some drug use – some involving children. Directed by Matthew Vaughn.) Aaron Johnson (Dave Lizewski/Kick-Ass), Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Chris D’Amico/Red Mist), Mark Strong (Frank D’Amico), Chloe Moretz (Mindy Macready/Hit-Girl), Nicolas Cage (Damon Macready/Big Daddy). Music by Marius De Vries, Ilan Eshkeri, Henry Jackman & John Murphy.

Based on a comic by Mark Millar (Wanted), Kick-Ass follows Dave (Johnson), a geeky high schooler who decides to don a scuba suit and fight crime under the name “Kick-Ass.” After his exploits go viral online, he gets dragged into a battle between the brutal father-daughter team of Damon and Mindy Macready (a.k.a Big-Daddy and Hit-Girl, or Cage and Moretz), and sadistic mobster Frank D’Amico (Strong) and his son Chris (Mintz-Plasse). A superhero-action/comedy that lives up to the name.

While the comic has a much darker tone, Kick-Ass wears its costume with a manic, infectious glee. The story is effective not only because of the cliches it skewers (such as Kick-Ass’s lack of a dramatic origin), but in how it portrays the usually unseen parts of the superhero experience: the beatings, the deaths and the abject failures. Johnson does a great job in bringing humanity and charisma to Dave/Kick-Ass, and even pathos as he gets further out of his depth, but he never devolves to cynicism. The duo of Nicolas Cage (doing his best Adam-West-Batman impression) and the adorable-yet-terrifying Chloe Moretz steals their every scene. Her action sequences are amazing, but also a little unsettling, watching an 11-year-old deal death so readily. That will probably be a sticking point for some (along with the language and overall gruesomeness of the violence), but there’s a lot of heart to balance it out. Definitely not for kids or the faint of heart, but a fun time at the movies.


Jared Counts

Digital Technology Manager

Jared Counts moved to Houston in 1995, survived high school and college, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Houston with a degree in Communications (Media Production) and a minor in Film Studies. After being hired part-time at KUHF Radio in early 2003, he proceeded to bounce between...

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