REVIEW: Kingsman – The Secret Service (2015*)

20th Century Fox poster for Kingsman: The Secret Service

*I attribute it to 2015 due to the fact that it was only released at a festival in late 2014 – and was officially released in its country of production in 2015. A similar thing happened with Jagten aka The Hunt starring Mads Mikkelsen from 2012/2013.

If you’re like me, then you like the Daniel Craig Bond-films. If you’re like me, however, then you think they take themselves too seriously. In what is a nice break from serious spy flicks, Kingsman takes over and captivates its audience. If you want to know what the love-child of The Spy Who Loved Me and Kick-Ass is, then watch this film and find out.

Warning – expect spoilers for the film in the following part of the review

Colin Firth stars as Harry ‘Galahad’ Hart a secret agent from the organisation Kingsman who made a mistake during a mission in the middle-east and got a partner killed. That partner’s son, Gary ‘Eggsy’ Unwin, is played by Taron Egerton – and his life has gotten off the rails. Eggsy is recruited by Galahad to be in the running for a place as a Kingsman agent – replacing the former Lancelot. Though unsuccesful in becoming Lancelot, Eggsy is soon thrown into an agent role, when Richmond Valentine, an internet billionaire, plans to cull the human race.

Colin Firth is spot-on as Galahad – meaning that he’s an absolute gentleman, until you show that you have no manners. I really like Firth, and to see him in an action role was a lot of fun. Speaking of fun – Taron Egerton blew me away. He is charming, funny and totally believable as a thug-gone-good. Instantly lovable.

I am extremely happy that they didn’t force romance down our throats – instead Lancelot was developed as more than just a love interest. Which also led to one of the funniest scenes featuring a ‘Swedish princess’. Which reminds me, this is not a family movie – not a simple Bond-movie – don’t expect that.

As for the villains? Samuel L. Jackson was great as usual – I loved Galahad and Valentine’s tête-a-tête about Spy-flicks – and Valentine’s Jaws-like side-kick Gazelle, played by Sofia Boutella, is fun to watch. However, I felt that they underused Michael Caine’s character.

I thought Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman did a great job with this film, and while a person sitting next to me thought it had pacing-issues – I didn’t think it was as much of a problem. I loved how the film felt like the plot of the original Star Wars at times – meaning that Firth had his Obi-Wan moments, and Egerton his Skywalker moments. I desperately want a sequel for Kingsman, and I want Vaughn to stick to a franchise for once.

Final Score: 8.6 out of 10.0 – A perfect love-child of The Spy Who Loved Me and Kick-Ass.

I’m Jeffrey Rex

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