Kingsman: The Golden Circle - 1.5 Stars
The polar opposite to the first film. This sequel is tacky, crammed full of unnecessary violence and plain dumb.
When their headquarters are destroyed and the world is held hostage, the Kingsman's journey leads them to the discovery of an allied spy organization in the US. These two elite secret organizations must band together to defeat a common enemy.
I loved Matthew Vaughn’s original 2014 action-comedy. It was quirky, British, funny - but very, very smart. This new film co-written by Vaughn and Jane Goldman lacks originality and the smarts of Part 1. Established characters and themes are ignored in favour of resurrecting Colin Firth, who was killed in Part 1. The Statesman (Pedro Pascal, Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges) are under utilised and sidelined. Pascal gets the most screen-time, but trailers set up more scenes for Bridges and Tatum - they have about 2 scenes each and are being set-up for roles in a possible third film.
Mark Strong is excellent, as is Egerton, Colin Firth also gives an admirable performance - but the writing lets all three down. Julianne Moore has the best role, she’s insane, unpredictable and funny. Surprisingly Sir Elton John actually gives the best performance, his comedy and action sequences are exquisite. He’s worth watching the film for.
The visuals are hurriedly done and you can tell, the script is packed with stupid gadgets that are no longer funny, cool (or making a mockery of Bond like things) and ridiculous exposition. A good 60% is dedicated to bringing Firth back from the dead, 10% is plot related and the remaining 30% sets up a third film.
Overall is a disaster, I expected, hoped and wanted so much more. Fans of the first film will inevitably be disappointed.
Review by Benjamin Maio Mackay
Screening courtesy of 20th Century Fox