When you read a description of Kingsman: The Secret Service – A spy organization recruits an unrefined, but promising street kid into the agency’s ultra-competitive training program just as a global threat emerges from a twisted tech genius – it would be easy to dismiss because that summary is so played out & stale. With that being said, I can safely say that Kingsman just reinvented the super spy genre. As a major James Bond film fan, I was interested to see what kind of new spin this movie put on the old spy movie brand because it appeared to also be attempting to be a comedy. Just as with every movie, I went in with an open mind as I always do and to be honest, it didn’t matter. Kingsman: The Secret Service delivered on every level.
From the very beginning of the film, we get a couple pretty generic British spy film anecdote of a well-dressed man with clever one-liners armed with only a pistol & an easy smile who completely obliterates a room full of bad guys. Right when you feel the film is going to continue down this familiar path of the British spy film playbook, Kingsman immediately deviates toward the road less traveled and gives you a glimpse of what you’re in for the next hour and a half.
The two main characters in Kingsman are Harry Hart, played by Oscar winner Colin Firth, and Gary ‘Eggsy’ Unwin, played by newcomer Taron Egerton were each home runs in their performances. Firth played the veteran Kingsman Harry Hart, whose code name is Galahad, who was a little rogue in how he felt the spy group MI6 should be recruiting from all aspects of the society not just from universities and ‘upper crust’ families. The entire movie Firth played his character so well that you felt at some point in his life he auditioned for the James Bond character but was passed over and never forgot. Egerton was perfect for the role of Eggsy, a lower class kid who had aspirations of greater things when he was younger but had to make career decisions based on his family situation, so right off the bat you feel bad for the kid for giving up on his dreams to take care of his mom, little brother and deadbeat step dad.
Kingsman director Matthew Vaughn, who’s last action film was the super entertaining and successful X-Men: First Class, did an incredible job with Kingsman. The story moved along at a perfect pace of not too fast but slow enough to not feel like you’re being ushered through the story. Samuel L. Jackson who played villain, Richmond Valentine, was perfect for the role as it was a Bond type villain role but also did the opposite of the typical villain in most action movies. I’ll just leave that part alone so you will be as surprised as I was throughout the movie.
Kingsman: The Secret Service is the total package and was one of the most fun experiences I’ve had in the theater in quite a while. All of the major action movies over the last five or six years have all had very dark themes to them and Kingsman just turns, adjusts its cuffs and winks to them as only a British MI6 agent in a well-tailored suit can (and there are some seriously gorgeous suits in this film) because it is light-hearted and fun. If you want to see a movie that has unbelievable action scenes, laugh out loud comedy, a fun story, great acting and some seriously witty cameos; Kingsman is for you. Kingsman has Wachowski Brothers-type action, is James Bond cool, is Coen Brothers smart and has Todd Phillips comedy.
Just remember before you buy your ticket that Kingsman: The Secret Service is a true R-rated movie with R-rated comedy and R-rated action. Which as an avid movie-goer, I can totally appreciate because a lot of the new action movies are very watered down and pointless. I can only hope that this film spawns a few sequels because Kingsman was really fun to watch.