[BD Review] Wolfman and Dickson Say ‘Kick-Ass 2′ Was Pretty Terrible…

Kick-Ass 2

The big story this year came when star Jim Carrey refused to take part in any press surrounding Universal Pictures’ Kick-Ass 2, the sequel to Lionsgate’s 2010 comic book adaptation. While that was telling on its own, the fact that Lionsgate passed on the opportunity to make the sequel should have been a major red flag.

Still, the comics for both arcs are amazing, so there was quite a bit of excitement building for the R-rated, violent as hell, superhero movie. Unfortunately, the buzz is absolutely atrocious.

We have not one, but two negative reviews of our own. In Evan Dickson’s review, he says that the film is a confused grasp at former glory.

The Wolfman agree, with his lengthy take on the sequel below…

If you are checking out a movie called “Kick-Ass”, there are a few things you can come to expect. There’s going to be blood, there’s going to be profanity, and it’s not going to take itself too seriously. The original Kick-Ass, based on the comic book from Mark Millar and John Romita Jr., delivered on all of its promises. Director Matthew Vaughn was able to give us an interesting combination of cartoonish and comic book styles of filmmaking for a movie that set itself apart from some of the other superhero movies out there, Nicolas Cage gave us a warped father figure, and most importantly, Chloë Grace Moretz made us all feel really uncomfortable for how much we loved Hit-Girl. There were a few differences from the original story that I didn’t really enjoy, and I thought the pacing dragged at points, but Kick-Ass ended up being pretty solid. Kick-Ass 2 follows in the footsteps of the original by….adding a “2” to the title.

Seeing how dangerous it was to play superhero, Dave Lizewski (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) hangs up his Kick-Ass costume during his senior year. The streets seem a little bit safer at least, because the popularity of Kick-Ass has inspired other people to start fighting crime in costume. Mindy Macready (Moretz) might’ve given the impression that she’s retired Hit-Girl, but the events of the first film only force her to train herself harder. With his father out of the picture, Dave/Kick-Ass’s former best friend turned villain Chris D’Amico (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) decides to use his father’s money to turn him into the world’s first supervillain, The Mother Fucker. Instead of training himself like Kick-Ass and Hit-Girl decide to do after bumping into one another at school, The Mother Fucker spends money on hired goons to spread crime throughout the city. Kick-Ass also decides to seek out a team of his own, and ends up joining the leagues of “Justice Forever”, led by Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey). For every good deed done by Justice Forever, The Mother Fucker’s gang (who refer to themselves as The Toxic mega-Cunts) does something even worse. This back and forth can only last so long before the two teams have a showdown to see if it’s good or evil who shall prevail.

When the first film came out, it was a nice change of pace so see a cartoonish, violent and vulgar story of a “superhero” when we had grown accustomed to things like Iron Man or The Dark Knight. Three years later, that same charm just doesn’t hold up. Maybe it’s because I became such a fan of James Gunn’s Super, which I saw shortly after Kick-Ass, that I couldn’t buy into the universe that this movie created where people weren’t just gunned down, whether they be heroes or innocent people. Jeff Wadlow’s directing of Kick-Ass 2 was a little too heavy-handed when it came to reminding people about comic books. The first film mostly just had the main characters reading them, this film would have characters who were talking in subtitles have the translation pop up in Comic Sans word bubbles and an arbitrary reference to Stan Lee. Most of the rest of the dialogue was just peppered with dick jokes, which you can only take so many of. There were maybe one or two entertaining action sequences, the rest all just kind of dull and boring.

Remember how great I said Hit-Girl was? Well, she still is, for the most part, and it’s pretty obvious that the filmmakers wanted you to remember that, too. The more interesting aspects of the story focus on Mindy trying to leave her crime-fighting life behind and blend in with the popular kids at school, only to realize that these high school girls could be just as evil as any villain she could face. It made a good audition reel for Moretz being in the upcoming Carrie, but they never found a successful balance between her story and the boring Kick-Ass story. Taylor-Johnson was adequate as Kick-Ass, despite looking like he was 30 years old, and Mintz-Plasse was successfully irritating as The Mother Fucker. A heavily talked about topic with the film was not only the addition of a big name like Jim Carrey, but also the fact that he completely reneged his performance and any publicity because of how violent the film ultimately was. It doesn’t really hurt the film, as the character he plays is relatively bland. It seemed like instead of finding a better actor for the smaller role, the opportunity to get Carrey involved was too good to be true, and they brought him in to play a somewhat goofy former mafia hit man turned born again Christian crimefighter. No thanks.

I was always surprised at how much of a reaction the line at the end of the trailer of the film got where Carrey says, “You got a dog on your balls!” Every theater had uproarious laughter, and I never even realized it was a joke. When that line came up in the theater, it got a huge reaction, as if no one had ever heard a grownup say “balls” before. That’s when it dawned on me that sometimes, audiences want exactly what is promised to them, nothing more, nothing less. With Kick-Ass 2, you get exactly what the trailer promises, nothing more, nothing less. If the things in the trailer look like fun to you, then I’m sure you’ll enjoy Kick-Ass 2 more than I did, but just like the comic book series sequel, I felt like the filmmakers were capitalizing on the name to try to give you a ton of stuff you’ve already seen before, but this time it’s three years late. Kick-Ass 2? More like…Suck-Ass 2! AM I right guys? Hello? Hey….you still there?

  • anthonyd1

    I agree that it is the same stuff as the first movie but that is what I wanted. I love that this series is different kind of super hero saga and I enjoyed it for what it was. I liked it a lot. Not as awesome as the first one but still pretty awesome

    • WalkWithMeInDarkness

      Completely agree. It wasn’t as good as the first film, but I didn’t go in expecting some Oscar winning bullshit. It was good for what it was, but I have to say, I really just want a Hit Girl spinoff film, as she’s easily my favorite character.

  • ImPetrified

    Critical score on Rottentomatoes, including (surprisingly!?) the BD review, is largely negative. It’s at like 26% or so.

    Viewer score on IMDB?…….7.5 out of 10.

    Can you guys say, “out of touch”?

    I will be getting a big bucket of popcorn to watch this masterful film tomorrow on my day off.

    • Raziel_cz

      Neither RT nor IMDB represent the objective public opinion at this time. So no, it’s not out of touch. And as a review it actually can’t be at all.

  • Murdock408

    Not terrible, but I was dissapointed. It was definitely writer/director Jeff Wadlow’s fault though, I hate to blame somebody but it was fairly obvious after a while. The cast did what they could and were pretty awesome and I enjoyed the film but definitely a let down.

  • Kwonkicker

    Definitely an improvement over the first film, this was just a solid good popcorn flick.

  • ShadowJayd

    Pretty much agree with you on most things, though I still found myself enjoying certain aspects. I’ve said it elsewhere on the internetz tonight, but it had its moments. Do I think it could have done without the tired as hell ‘girl posse’ storyline, and that problematic ‘black comedy rape’ trope bullshit? Yep! Do the action scenes live up to the first film’s? Not particularly. But it’s not TOO terrible. I’d say it’s even fun.

    The bonus clip at the end of the credits was kind of pathetic though…

  • feck

    Loved the first one, but I think I’ll wait a few months to rent the DVD for part 2. Disappointing…

  • K-Dogg

    This is 2 straight sequels I was very disappointed with, when I was loving the first parts…RED 2 sucked, and I was very disappointed in this one as well. Not enough Hit Girl in this flick at all, the high school shit they can shove up their asses, I would have taken this sequel to a completely different place. Oh well, at least You’re Next is out in a week, that should not disappoint.

  • Canucklehead

    I just got back from this and think you guys are way off base. Why the hate for Carrey? He was excellent in a limited role and Chloe was great. A typical comedy action sequel, lots of violence, what’s not to like? Other than your review that is.

  • ill_mindedd

    this movie was great! if you’re a fan of the first movie, you’re gonna love this!

  • GoreFaceSupreme

    *spoilers*

    I don’t know what you guys were hoping for? It was great for what it is, a violent and funny look at superheroes and arch villains. It doesn’t take itself seriously and you shouldn’t expect it to. The police massacre in the middle of suburbia was worth the ticket price alone.

  • cscheffer

    I loved the movie the action and gore was awesome and hit girl’s growing up :'(.. I think it did stray off a little from the original and isnt as good but still exactly what I wanted and keeps pretty much up with the comic book, replacing Todd was shitty though and nothing on background of the toxic mega cunts.

  • Guts

    This is one of those movies that all the critics are up in arms against, but after the dust settles and all that bullshit is long forgotten it’ll be considered a solid sequel. I vaguely remember the first Kickass, but after watching this one in the theaters I enjoyed all the characters and wanted to see what comes next. I think the criticism of this movies stems from the critics not really getting it. The story is supposed to be disjointed and all over the place, all of the characters are growing apart and that camaraderie from the first film wasn’t meant to carry over into this film. The second wave of superheroes was supposed to symbolize a kind of want of regression to go back to that moment in the past where everything made more sense, but by the end they’ve all matured and ready to move on. It’s a solid movie. I fucking loved it.