12 Films of Christmas 2019 (Final Part)

We’re finally at the last part of this silly series of mine. It’s been fun for me to contrive reasons for non-christmas movies being christmas movies. And since we started this series with “Star Wars”, we might as well end it with “Star Wars”. *Checks title*. Oh god.

*Deep fucking sigh*. The “Star Wars Holiday Special” is a 1978 CBS tv movie somehow following on from George Lucas’ 1977 smash hit. It’s about the family of Chewbacca, and how they’re waiting for him to come celebrate the holidays with them. And as the creators try to fill out a 90 minute runtime, before that happens, we experience a whole bunch of different skits and music videos supposedly set a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. That’s right, it’s a variety show, including people like Art Carney, Bea Arthur, and Jefferson fucking Starship. So let’s get contriving.

Now, right off the bat I imagine you calling humbug on this, since it’s called “Holiday Special”. But let me clear something up, this isn’t about christmas… or hanukkah… or kwanzaa. It’s about Life Day. What’s Life Day? Fuck if I know, it’s some weird wookie holiday made up for this fever dream. But it’s not any actual holiday, so it goes. So what’s my contrivance then? Well, I could use the excuse of it being about a family get-together, which would be the easy way out so I could get this done quickly. But I’m gonna use something else.
So as mentioned earlier, this “Star Wars” thing is inexplicably a variety show, which is contextualized as things that Chewie’s family puts on through various monitors. And none of it is interesting or makes much sense… just like tv programming around the holidays. Sure, on occasion you might catch a decent flick (or in this Special’s case, a Jefferson Starship number), but for the most part it’s just a weird hodgepodge of stuff.

As you probably gathered from this post, I was not a fan. Christmas eve should usually be all about joy and love, but I guess I felt like a bit of misery was in order too.

Happy holidays.

12 Films of Christmas 2019 (Part 1)

Season’s greetings, ladies and gents. Alright, enough of that holly jolly shit, let’s get down to business. For a few years now, I’ve had this series on my blog where I do twelve shorter pieces starting on December 13th, leading up to December 24th (AKA the date where us in Sweden primarily celebrate christmas). First two years, I did christmas songs. The next two, I did films. Now, for this year, I’m doing films again. However, I’m throwing a monkey in the wrench this year… I won’t use actual christmas movies. Instead I’m just using 12 movies, and I have to contrive a reason as to why I’m mentioning them in a christmas series. Gotta find some way to switch up the monotony, you know. So without further ado… here we go.

As you probably guessed from the image at the top, I am starting this series off with a classic of sci-fi/fantasy cinema. “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back”, released in 1980, sequel to the 1977 super surprise hit “Star Wars”. It once again follows Luke, Leia, and Han (Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford) as they battle against the sinister galactic empire. Most of you probably assume that my contrivance for this is the first act of the movie, which is set on the snow-covered planet of Hoth. And while that adds to it, it’s not my main motivation (twist, motherfuckers). But for my contrivance to work, there will be spoilers. So if you haven’t seen “Empire Strikes Back”, then you’re either lying or you’ve lived under a rock for the past 39 years. So if you don’t want spoilers, go watch it, then come back. Don’t worry, I’ll wait…

Dramatic exaggeration of my long wait.

Welcome back. Now, spoilery contrivance time. If you’ve seen this movie, you should know that it’s all about bringing friends and family together, which is also what the holidays are about. First things first: We see Han get reunited with his old buddy Lando Calrissian (Billy Dee Williams). It seems slightly tense at first, but then there’s a hug and laughter and offers of refreshments.

And then there’s the family reunion. Later in the movie, we have Luke meeting the spooky looking Darth Vader (David Prowse/James Earl Jones). They scuffle a bit, Luke gets disarmed (HA!), and that’s when the classic line happens. No… I am your father! Got chills when I rewatched it yesterday, it’s still great. And isn’t it nice to see a boy and his father get reunited? Sure, it’s a bit awkward at first, but somewhere down the cockles of your heart, there’s still a bit of holiday heart warmth to it.

“Empire Strikes Back” is not only a fantastic movie, but also a nice, heartwarming movie about awkward reunions with friends and family. Perfect holiday analogy!

Have a good one.

 

My Star Wars Story

Hello there, ladies and gentlemen and potential space aliens. Today I wanted to do something a little bit different. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while, and with today (the 4th of May) being Star Wars day, I thought now would be as good a time as any to do it. I’m about to share with you my Star Wars Story. No, not my pitch for a spinoff movie for the franchise, but just my experience(s) with “Star Wars”. Where it began, where it went, and where it is. So let’s just jump into it.

For the cave dwellers who just found out about the outside world, “Star Wars” is a franchise started in 1977 by American director George Lucas with it’s first installment… “Star Wars” (I refuse to call it “A New Hope”). The movie was a smash hit, making all the money, and becoming one of if not the biggest franchise in all of history with sequels, prequels, spinoffs, novels, video games, toys, tabletop games, sex toys (yes really), and so much more. “Star Wars” has pretty much taken over the cultural world, and it’s influence can be felt throughout most media. With that out of the way, time for the bit I originally promised.

The year was 2003. Or 2004, I am a bit unsure on the exact year. But I was six years old. I went to the store with my dad to get some groceries. When we were getting close to the register I had a look at the magazine shelves, which of course both had magazines and a few comic books. I noticed a “Donald Duck” comic there with a weird and interesting cover, and with some odd toy following along with it. I (like the greedy little shit I was) asked dad if we could buy the comic, and he said yes. So it came along with us, and when we got home I asked what this weird stuff with the cover and the toy was. He explained that it was “Star Wars”, and the toy was a small, plastic lightsaber. I, not having seen “Star Wars”, asked what “Star Wars” was. He said it was a movie, and then he went to a shelf and picked up a VHS tape. That tape of course being “Star Wars” (recorded from a TV airing). He sat my butt down, put the movie in the VHS player, and I say for two hours and was in awe of everything I saw. I was engrossed by the music, the characters, the visuals, the visual effects… it was absolutely amazing. It was like having an epiphany. Then of course “Star Wars” became a big thing for me. Luckily for me, we had “Empire Strikes Back”, “Return of the Jedi”, and “The Phantom Menace” (shut up, I was a kid) recorded as well, so I had more movies to watch afterwards.

Few years later, and thanks to the TV and also my friend, I got to see “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith” as well (shut up, I was a kid). “Star Wars” was a huge part of my life. I watched all the movies that I could and I played several of the video games. This was more than just some silly sci-fi franchise to me… it was a huge fucking part of my life. As I got slightly older I began seeing the ups and downs of certain parts of the franchise. Most notably was when my friend showed me the animated “The Clone Wars” movie at his place once. I could tell that it wasn’t great. But I also didn’t care fully, because I was simply in love with this franchise.

Another few years go by and I am in high school (around 17 years old). Something has happened. While I haven’t fallen out of love with “Star Wars”, I just haven’t had the same kind of obsessions about it as when I was younger. Admittedly I also didn’t exactly watch the movies much around that age, making my love fade a bit into the background. It’s more or less just gathering dust at this point. Then November 2014 comes around and we get our first trailer for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. Now, regardless of your opinion of that movie, you can’t deny that the hype was massive when it was first officially unleashed upon the world with that trailer.

This was big. The first new “Star Wars” movie in nearly ten years (“Clone Wars” doesn’t count). And that’s when something in my head kinda clicked. This franchise that I had grown up with was coming back. A new movie to look froward to… something that I almost never had the privilege of as a kid. It was such a huge thing. My love started reigniting. But there was still something missing…

Skip ahead to late 2015, and “Force Awakens” is finally coming out. I watch it opening night with several friends. That’s when it truly clicked into place for me. The first was the lighter being used. But this was the lighter igniting the candle. It was a great experience. And of course it was made clear that we were getting even more movies in the series. We got the franchise back (and helped it in making all the money), and we were gonna get more movies. It was quite an exciting time to be a fan of this franchise.

So now we go into the present. What are my current thoughts on it all? I still love “Star Wars”. Are we getting close to over-saturation in terms of movies? Maybe a little, but I still look forward to seeing what this franchise will give us. New movies, new games (admittedly from the wrong publisher), new novels, new comics, new shows… so much “Star Wars”. It’s even more stuff for us older fans, and some new, introductory stuff for newer fans who came in through “Force Awakens” and such. It’s really the perfect time to be a “Star Wars” fan. You got your old stuff, and you’re getting some new stuff.

Speaking of “Star Wars”, here’s a link to an episode from last year of the We Have a Hulk podcast (friends of mine) where I, together with some other cool people, take a “Star Wars” quiz. You get to here arguing, voices, noises, and just a bunch of people having fun. I had a lot of fun doing it.

https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/wehaveahulk/episodes/2017-05-04T16_49_05-07_00

And that’s about it. I really just wanted to give you my story on how I got acquainted with this amazing franchise, as well as just gush about “Star Wars” in general. So yeah… May the fourth be with you.

Movie Review: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)

I really don’t have to make up a clever intro for this… it’s fucking “Star Wars”, so let’s just get into it.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”.

Set more or less immediately after “The Force Awakens”, the story follows Rey (Daisy Ridley) as she has found Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) and intends to be trained in the Jedi arts by him. Meanwhile, Finn (John Boyega), Poe (Oscar Isaac), Leia (Carrie Fisher, R.I.P), and the rest of the Resistance try to fight off the First Order. So now we have our plot. And is it good? Yes. It asks questions, it answers questions, and it dares tackle some dark subjects that haven’t ever really been talked much about in previous “Star Wars” movies. It is a for the most part a great fucking plot. I say for the most part, because there’s a section of it that, while entertaining, didn’t really do much. Sure, it had a reason to be there (sort of), but in the long run it felt a bit more like filler rather than a sensible plot thread. It didn’t ruin my enjoyment of the plot, but it does bring it down from near perfect to pretty damn good.

The characters here are layered, entertaining, likable, and entertaining. Daisy Ridley returns as Rey, the new hero of the franchise. She’s still kind of naive in how she wants to learn the force and bring back the Jedi order and such. And while naive, she’s still tough, determined, and just so cool. And Ridley is fantastic in the role. John Boyega returns as Finn, the Stormtrooper turned Resistance fighter. He’s funny, he’s cool, he’s charming, and he can be a badass when he wants to. And Boyega is still great. Oscar Isaac returns as Poe Dameron, the best damn pilot in the Resistance. While he didn’t have too much to do in “The Force Awakens”, he got a lot more to do here and he gets a good amount of character development (surprisingly so). And Isaac is fantastic in the role. Mark Hamill returns as Luke Skywalker (and he actually gets to speak this time!). You can tell that he’s older, damaged, and a bit more cynical than he used to be, but he’s still Luke Skywalker. And the stuff they do with him here are pretty great. And Hamill is fantastic here. Adam Driver returns as Kylo Ren, the conflicted force wielder. In the first movie his motivations could feel a bit vague when you step back and think about it, but here you get a much clearer picture on that stuff, and he gets some great development here. And Driver is great in the role. Carrie Fisher (may she rest in peace) returns as Leia, the leader of the resistance. She’s a badass, but she’s also older and not as energetic as she used to be. And she does get some solid dramatic moments throughout. And Fisher is great in the role. Domhnall Gleeson returns as General Hux. He’s over the top and a little bit goofy, but I forgive that as it works for me in this crazy galaxy. So yeah, Gleeson is good(?). Andy Serkis as Snoke… slightly underdeveloped, but it’s definitely a sinister performance. So yeah, great Serkis. New people! Kelly Marie Tran plays Rose, a Resistance mechanic that gets involved more than she would’ve expected after something happens. She’s tough, she’s charming, and she’s cool. And Kelly Marie Tran is really good in the role. Then we have Laura Dern as Vice Admiral Holdo, a high ranking woman who gets brought into the fight. She doesn’t see completely eye-to-eye with certain crew members, giving her an interesting dynamic within the movie. And Dern is great in the role. That’s it for now, as I don’t want to get too in-depth here. But expect some solid supporting performances from people like Benicio Del Toro and Billie Lourd.

The one and only John Williams returned to do the music for this movie, and it’s fucking amazing. Whereas the score to “Force Awakens” was really good, it didn’t bring much new to the table and never stuck out much to me, “The Last Jedi” then picks up the orchestra and says “Let’s make some epic and emotional music that the audiences will love”. And really, the score here is absolutely fantastic.

This movie was written and directed by Rian Johnson and he did a fantastic job. He gives this movie and incredibly unique vibe while still making it feel like “Star Wars”. His direction is sweeping, intimate, and filled with all kinds of epicness to it. And the way he directs action makes it feel heavy-hitting and like there are some actual stakes to it. When the movie wants you to feel like someone/something’s getting it’s shit kicked in, the movie succeeds in doing that. It’s also tons of fun and incredibly badass to watch. This is also a visually stunning movie. Johnson’s direction combined with Steve Yedlin’s cinematography makes this one of the most gorgeous “Star Wars” movies, possibly even rivaling “Rogue One” in that regard. There are seriously shots in this movie that took my breath away with how stunning they were. And yes, the visual effects are fucking amazing, no doubt about that one. And there’s a good amount of humor here, and I laughed quite a bit. Really, this movie is surprisingly funny.

This movie has barely even been released, but so far it has gotten some positive reception (keep in mind that these scores will change as time passes, but I refuse to edit along with these changes). On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 94% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 85/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,4/10.

Is this the best “Star Wars” movie? No. But “The Last Jedi” is still a great fucking movie. It has a damn good plot, great characters, fantastic performances, fantastic music, and fantastic directing/cinematography/action/effects. I guess my one flaw with it was that one bit I eluded to earlier, though it isn’t a total dealbreaker. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is a 9,57/10. So it gets the “PORG OF APPROVAL!”.
ladda ned

My review of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is now completed.

Rest in peace, Carrie Fisher. You are still severely missed.

We have a trailer for “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”!!!

Star Wars, nothing but Star Wars, give me those Star Wars, don’t let them end! Oh, hello there. Trailer time!

So as you have seen all over the internet, it’s seriously impossible to miss, we now have a trailer for “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”, the next installment in this amazing religio- I mean franchise. So if you haven’t seen “The Force Awakens” (you fucking cave dweller), some spoilers coming up. Okay? 3, 2, 1, go! So this seems to pick up right after the moment at the end of “The Force Awakens” where Rey (Daisy Ridley) has found Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) on that big rock in the middle of fucking nowhere. And she seems to be training with him and there’s some space battles and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) looks really pissed and Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) is still the most handsome man in the galaxy. Oh, and the trailer ends with a really ominous line that I think will be really interesting to see elaborated upon when the movie comes out. So what did I think? It was a cool trailer for a movie that I would’ve watched regardless because it’s motherfucking “Star Wars”! So yeah, I’m pretty fucking excited for this! “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is set to come out around christmas of this year.

What are your thoughts? Are you excited about “The Last Jedi”? And what did you think about “The Force Awakens”? Leave any and all thoughts in the comments!
Have a good one and enjoy the trailer!

Movie Review: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)

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I am one of those people that has a soft spot for DC’s animated movies. I’m not saying that I think all of them are great, but when a new one is announced I get a little excited. And this year we officially got one announced that is based on one of the most beloved graphic novels of all time. So… how is this adaptation? Well, I can’t speak for what you think… but we can get into the review and find out what I think. So let’s go!

Ladies and gentlemen… “Batman: The Killing Joke”.

The Joker (Mark Hamill) has once again escaped from Arkham Asylum, this time with a plan to terrorize the Gordon family to prove a certain point. So it’s up to Batman (Kevin Conroy) to find him and bring him to justice. And the stuff we get here is really solid. It is a dramatic, tense, and almsot disturbing plot where we get to see Joker do these horrible things, while also giving us a glimpse into his past. And all that stuff is great. However, the plot-based stuff isn’t 100% perfect. There’s a 30 minute period at the beginning of the film that has nothing to do with the actual “Killing Joke” stuff, instead having some plot focusing on Batman and Batgirl (Tara Strong) chasing some criminals. I understand what they tried to do here, adding some runtime to the movie while also trying to give us more of a reason to care about Batgirl. But I never felt that it really added anything worthwhile to the plot, instead just adding 30 minutes of average(ish) entertainment. Seriously, you can skip the first 30 minutes of the movie and not miss a single important thing. So the “Killing Joke” stuff is great, but it takes a while to get there.

The characters featured in this movie are ones that all know and love… except for like several in that opening 30 minutes. But the ones we came to see, they are very well represented. Kevin Conroy once again did the voice of Batman (I don’t think he will ever quit, #SteadyPaycheck). And really, I don’t have to say anything. He is as phenomenal as ever, he really is the Batman. Mark Hamill as the Joker… Yeah, he’s fuckin’ masterful. Let me put it like this: Nicholson and Ledger were both really great as the character, but Mark Hamill really is THE JOKER. His voice is iconic and simply perfect for the character (#HesMyJoker). We also got Tara Strong, returning to her role as Barbara Gordon/Batgirl. And she was really good. We also got Ray Wise (not a returning Bat-cast member) as Commissioner Jim Gordon. And he was really good in the role. Not as good as Gary Oldman or even Jonathan Banks, but still really good. Then the rest of the supporting cast was rounded out by a lot of other voice actors. All of them are very talented, but I don’t want to sit here and write all of them down here. But let it be known that they did a great job!

The score for the movie was composed by Lolita Ritmanis, Michael McCuistion, and Kristopher Carter. And it is a very exciting and very well composed score, perfectly fitting this type of action movie. I will also mention that there is an actual song in there too (as in a song with lyrics) and it is pretty amazing. And the scene where it’s featured is nothing short of a masterpiece.

DC animation regular Sam Liu stands as director of this movie, and I’d say it is for the most part a well directed movie. Scenes play out at a decent pace. However… the animation leaves a little bit to be desired. And I know that can be the thing with these DC animated movies, but you’d think they’d up the ante a bit with such an iconic story combined with the fact that this played in theaters. But here’s also the thing: Some scenes look great, with a decent amount of detail in them and overall really good flow of animation. But then some bits look kind of bad. Some movements look stiff and kind of jittery.

This movie has gotten some mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 48% positive rating. On Metacritic it doesn’t even have a score. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,6/10.

Guys, in the end, “Batman: The Killing Joke” disappointed me a bit. Is it as bad as some say? No. But it’s also not among the best DC animated features. It as a good plot, good characters, great voice acting, really good music, and some decent animation. howeer it is bogged down a bit by those first 30 minutes and the animation being as inconsistent as I mentioned. Time for my final score. AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! My final score for “Batman: The Killing Joke” is an 8,51/10. So it is flawed, but I think that it can still be worth buying.
Worth buying

My review of “Batman: The Killing Joke” is now completed.

And for those asking: No, I have not read the graphic novel. I know, shame on me!

Movie Review: Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens

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I really have no clever or witty introduction for this review. I really just want to get into the review so I can tell you about my thoughts on the movie. I guess I could give you my backstory on how I got into “Star Wars” in the first case, but I feel like that’s a thing for a separate post. So let’s just get on with the real deal here.

My dearest ladies and gentlemen, I present to you… “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens”!

This movie is set about 30 years after “Return of the Jedi” and follows a young scavenger named Rey (Daisy Ridley) who meets up with a man named Finn (John Boyega) who used to be a stormtrooper before he left for not liking what this “First Order” does. So it follows them meeting up with Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and the gang to try to stop the “First Order” and it’s leader, the nefarious Kylo Ren (Adam Driver). Guys… it happened, it finally fucking happened… a great plot in a “Star Wars” movie. That’s something we haven’t seen since “Return of the Jedi”, and that was 32 years ago. I felt like they actually put some effort into the plot of this one. You care about the good guys trying to save the day, you care about what happens in general. They actually did a great job… YES!!!

The characters in this movie are all great. Just like in the original trilogy, they were all instantly likable and they played their part in the story well. Let’s start with the old blood which we used to love and see if we still like them… was there ever any doubt? Harrison Ford is great as Han Solo, being just as fun and badass as he was back in the day even though he is a lot older now. Carrie Fisher as Leia… terrific. Peter Mayhew is still as awesome in the role of Chewbacca as he was back in the day. And I will not lie, some people will be disappointed if not mad about how they used Luke Skywalker in the movie. Me personally? I thought it worked, it was good. Anthony Daniels as C-3PO was also really good even though there was limited screen time for him. Now let’s talk some of the new blood they put in the movie. John Boyega as Finn was just great. His performance has a lot of energy, a lot of humanity and a lot of likability. Daisy Ridley was absolutely terrific as Rey. Her performance felt so real and so fine-tuned that she was just great. Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron… god damn badass! Seriously, Isaac was great in the role and his character was definitely one of my favorites in the movie. Finally we have Adan Driver as main bad guy Kylo Ren… yeah he was pretty damn fantastic. And he plays my favorite type of villain: the villain whom you can understand the motivations for. you can kind of get behind his thoughts in the movie. Sure, I didn’t condone what he did because he did some terrible shit, but I can still understand his thinking, and that’s the type of villain I love! And look, there are too many actors in this movie to tlak about them all, but let’s just say that they all did a pretty great job in the movie.

This is a part where I had absolutely no doubts at all: the score. Why was I so confident in it? Because a great while ago it was announced that the score would be provided by none other than John Williams, the man who has done the music for all previous movies in the series. And once again, the man fucking nails it perfectly. Both the classic themes that we’ve heard a million (billion) times and the new songs work perfectly in the movie. I mean, it’s John freakin’ Williams!

This movie was directed by J.J. Abrams who now have his hands in both “Star Trek” and “Star Wars” which means he might finally brings the fanbases together. Anyhow, he did a great job with the directing. Everything looks smooth, it’s all very swift, there are a lot of long, beautiful takes and it all just looks really nice. And oh my god… are those practical effects? Yes they are, holy shit. That’s right, movie has practical effects, which is something the crew wanted in the movie and they somehow made it the majority in the movie. Sure, there is CGI in the movie, but really only when they needed it. For the most part they stuck to the practical stuff (which is amazing to see). And I have to say that all of the effects in the movie look absolutely fantastic. The movie also moves at a great pace, never feeling slow or bogged down by exposition or overall boring stuff. And the action scenes are pretty great as well, all feeling very grounded and almost even real. I especially love the dog fights, those are so satisfying to watch. I also feel like I have to mention that there is actual humor in the movie and it is really funny… something that they failed at with the prequel trilogy. But here, they gloriously succeeded.

Sure, this movie just came out, but I will still say that it has been received well. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 97% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 81/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 9,1/10 which most likely will change by a good amount when more people have gotten the chance to see it, but that is what it stands at right at the time of this review.

“Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” is what I would really call a true “Star Wars” movie. It has a great plot, great characters & acting, fantastic music, great directing, great action, great visual effects, great writing and just an overall sense of fun. Time for my final score. My final score for “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” is a 9,89/10. It definitely gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

“Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” is at last reviewed.

You have no idea how long I have waited for this…

Movie Review: Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015)

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How many spy movies with any credibility do we get these days that aren’t “James Bond”? Pretty much zero, that’s how many. Really, that’s all I have to say on the matter.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Kingsman: The Secret Service”.

Harry “Galahad” Hart (Colin Firth) is a man working for an organization known as the Kingsmen. This organization pretty much consists of gentlemanly badasses. One day after a Kingsman dies, Harry gets the chance to recruit a young man called Eggsy (Taron Egerton) who happens to be the son of a former Kingsman. And they together wit ha few other members of this organization have to try to stop bad guy Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) from doing his evil things. To say that this plot is anything but basic would be a big fat lie, but at the same time the movie knows that it is quite simple. Mainly it’s just supposed to be an homage/send-up to classic spy films and something pulls it off pretty damn well. This isn’t a movie that is supposed to be taken too seriously even though there are some slightly more dramatic bits, but those bits never feel unnecessary or forced… they work. Everything in this silly plot works.

The characters are all consistently entertaining, interesting and pretty cool. Sure, there are some dickheads in the movie, but they are not really part of the central cast. Anyway… how was the acting? Well it’s pretty great. Relative newcomer Taron Egerton plays our hero, Eggsy and he is actually pretty damn great in the role. He is likable, he is relateable, he is funny and he’s actually pretty awesome. Colin Firth as Galahad was of course great if you look at it from a performance-based perspective. But I was also skeptical about it, thinking “Colin Firth: Action star? I don’t think so”. Oh, how I was wrong, he’s great in the movie. Samuel L. Jackson was great in the movie as well. He has this lisp throughout the movie which at first was a little distracting, but it kind of grew on me as time went on. Then we have a bunch more great actors who I don’t have the time/patience to fully go through even though I thought they all were great, so I’m jsut gonna go ahead and mention them and be done with it. Mark Strong, Jack Davenport, Sofia Boutella, Michael Caine, Mark Hamill, Sophie Cookson.

The score for the movie was composed by Henry Jackman & Matthew Margeson and I have to say that it was pretty great. If you’ve seen a few “Bond” movies, you know how it sounds. Big, bombastic, orchestral and fun. This movie also has a lot of licensed tracks that it uses and they all absolutely work within the context of the movie… sort of. There is one song that was in a scene that felt a little weird at first, but then I thought that it was just great and it added to the fun of it all. There are some songs I personally didn’t like, but still felt that they worked for the scenes they were used in, so I’m not detracting any points for them.

This movie was directed by Matthew Vaughn who also made “X-Men: First Class” and “Kick-Ass”, two movies I personally really enjoyed. And once again, he did a good job directing this movie. It is fast, it is well-shot and it’s just really good. Yes, there is a bit of shaky-cam in the movie but I feel like it actually sort of worked in some strange way. I don’t know, somehow it jsut really worked for the action scenes in the movie which are all pretty great. I mean the action is pretty violent, brutal and if you do not like violence and a lot of blood in your movies, then maybe skip this one because blood and gore galore. I have to also touch on the fact that we get to see Colin Firth, Colin fucking Firth… kick a lot of ass in the movie. Apparently he even did about 80% of his own stunts for the movie. And without spoiling it here, there is one scene that just has several factors about it that just made it one of the best scenes I have ever seen. Because it is both well made and utterly fucking ridiculous which is just something I really needed. I just might talk about it though in an upcoming “My Favorite Scenes” (Nudge nudge, wink wink). I also have to quickly mention that there is a lot of funny humor in this movie… that’s it.

This movie has been fairly well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 74% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 58/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,8/10.

“Kingsman: The Secret Service” is a ridiculous spy movie with a surprisingly good plot, great acting & characters, an awesome soundtrack, really good directing and great action. Time for my final score. *Bang bang*. My final score for “Kingsman: The Secret Service” is a 9,88/10. It definitely gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “Kingsman: The Secret Service” is now done.

Manners Maketh Man.