Monday, April 19, 2010

Kick Ass

I just saw Kick Ass this afternoon, I can't think of a more repulsive, offensive movie in a very long time, and you know what? I loved it! This one is not for the kiddies, in any way, and most 'decent' people will be offended at some point in the movie, but for those a little off like myself, who likes to find meaning in movies, this one is exceptional, albeit rude, vulgar and violent in just about every way. This blending of Kill Bill and Romper Room will please most any Quentin Tarantino or Robert Rodriquez fan and offend most any politically correct person alive.

Imagine a society where we had regular people who took on the role of a super hero? This hero may be kind of like Bruce Wayne of Batman Fame, but without all of the gadgets and with maybe a little more violent temper. Imagine no real super hero powers, no special gadgets, just a desire to fight evil and to stand up against the wrongs of society. Then imagine those heroes being the people who have been abused, hurt, and misunderstood. Mix in some teenage humor, social commentary and in the process shocking scenarios and you have much of what drives Kick Ass.

Kick Ass staring Aaron Johnson as Kick Ass, (who when in costume sounds an awful lot like Toby McGuire, another super hero in another movie,) Chloe Moretz as Hit girl, and Nicholas Cage as Hit Girl’s father, Big Daddy. Kick Ass, (Dave Lizewski) is a typical teenager, going through typical teenage issues, including sexual issues has had it as a nobody. Under the direction of Matthew Vaughn, we see the character develop from the opening comedic and shocking scenes, to the growing up by facing tragedy and difficult circumstances. From the very opening scenes, we see that while there may be humor in this story, there are also moments that shock and amaze the viewer. We also ultimately see Kick Ass come across an organized crime syndicate that has had its way in his city. His super hero persona becomes a hero of sorts in the city, but he also becomes a motivating factor in bringing out others to take part as a Super Hero.

Kick Ass is well directed, edited, with a moving soundtrack that doesn’t stop. I was either entertained or repulsed for virtually every frame of this movie. The special effects, especially the fight scenes are rather remarkable, especially when considering the age of the cast, especially Hit Girl. There is blood and gore, and action that by its very nature are sometimes difficult to watch. It is these things that takes this absurd idea of a movie and makes it work. While there will be, and have been, critics of the movie, primarily because of its violence and the age of one of the actors, I found that contributing to the disgust of the movie, which I think we should find repulsive. Some scenes are more remindful of a video game than a movie. We should consider that our children may be participating in more action of the nature presented in Kick Ass than we realize. I was expecting an action packed funny film. I got a film with some funny moments, yet was action packed with a rather remarkable plot.

Kick Ass portrays the desire for heroes in society. Just as in the movie, we live in a society that has been robbed of its innocence, which has influenced the evil around us, even evil among those who are supposed to be our protectors. Just like another hero I respect, it is as if sometimes we need a savior, a savior who may be a child, or a young person to help point us to justice, and truth. Of course the methods used in Kick Ass are not the best methods; in fact there is a great deal of violence used in that justice, but it doesn’t negate the need for justice. We can ask; what lessons are we teaching and using in society? Are we as adults standing up for justice? Are we just looking through our stained glass windows, doing nothing and letting good and decent people have to face the consequences of evil due to our own inaction and irresponsibility? Underneath the violent portrayals in Kick Ass we are forced to think about those questions. There is a scene where an adult is looking out his window, watching a robbery, seeing someone beat to a pulp, and that person, does nothing. Then we see a young ambitious hero come to the rescue, only to face what appears to be certain death, all while others look on. Which character are we? Do we realize that sometimes, standing for what is right, may result in harm? I am reminded here of the verse, no greater love has anyone than this, that they are willing to lay down their life for another. In Kick Ass, we see characters that are willing to do just that, lay down their life for the innocent.

As stated in my first paragraph, I have to admit, I loved this movie. I will get criticism for it for a variety of reasons, but one thing I appreciate is originality and taking a story line to a new level.

If super heroes existed, if a common person became one of those super heroes, I don’t think we would be much different than what is presented in Kick Ass. We would have weaknesses, sometimes the bad guy would still win because like the Bible says, it rains on the just and the unjust and bad things sometimes happen to good and decent people. Many will be upset by the use of a small child in the role she plays, and the language she uses, but do we realize that by our own inactions as adults, as parents, that sometimes we are leading children to these very behaviors we find so repulsive on screen? I challenge, some of us have children much more like this than we would like to admit, maybe not the killing machine this character is, but certainly using the language and having the thoughts. We have to ask ourselves, are we causing our children to grow up way too fast? Do we understand that we can, and should be the heroes our children look up to? Or do we stand by and let injustice continue to rule and do nothing about it. In that regard, due to the story, action, and yes, adult themes, I found myself liking this movie because in taking such an absurd idea, I found myself believing and accepting the struggles of these characters. I realize it isn’t for everyone, but it was for this guy.

On a scale of 1 – 10, for the perfect 10 that sometimes looses the one they love, I give a very enjoyable and surprising 9

The following is the PG trailer of the film, there is a popular R rated trailer out there, but out of respect for some reading this, I posted the milder version. I will remind you though, this film is rated R for a very good reason.

Just click on the trailer to watch it, if it don’t appear for some reason, just click on the following link:

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