Kingsman The Secret Service Is A Very British Spy Caper And A Whole Lot Of Fun
Murder, mayhem and madness are unleashed in this absurdly enjoyable spy caper that David Niven or perhaps Patrick Macnee might have made in the 1960s.
Only this time we have exploding heads, potty-mouthed language and – towards the end – a certain X-rated gag about the queen of Sweden’s bottom that would have made everyone at Ealing choke on their Earl Grey.
With Niven unavailable, it’s down to Colin Firth to save the world as Harry Hart, a crack member of the ultra-secret Kingsman espionage ring, headed by Michael Caine.
Ever since a fellow spy died in a botched mission 17 years earlier, Harry has been wracked with guilt, causing him to approach his colleague’s tearaway son ‘Eggsy’ (newcomer Taron Egerton) to offer him a place at the agency’s training school.
It’s a programme, headed by Mark Strong’s agent, that sees the youngster transform from loutish thug to refined gent as he competes in a series of ever-more testing tasks.
But as the lad learns to become an ice-cold killer, a mobile phone tycoon (Samuel L Jackson) is hatching a plan to annihilate most of the human race.
Matthew Vaughn’s film very much resembles a Bond movie or an episode of The Avengers, only made by someone with Tourette’s.
Big mouth: Samuel L Jackson revels in his role as the film”s villain
While it ticks all the action movie boxes with copious explosions, slayings and a thunking soundtrack, a sense of British humour and panache runs through it like the letters in a stick of rock.
Here is a world of carnage committed by gents in bespoke suits, their hair groomed to perfection with the finest tonic Jermyn Street has to offer.
Heck, you can practically smell the Dunhill cologne, and this is the only place you’ll see someone murder the entire congregation of a redneck church with an umbrella.
It’s all enormous fun and, even if you aren’t snorting at the bad language and toilet humour, you’ll at least leave the film pleased to know there are people out there brave enough to put together such an hilarious, and peculiarly British, extravaganza.
Kingsman: The Secret Service is released next Thursday.
The Reel Lowdown
Best Quote: Harry to a redneck church- goer, “I’m a Catholic whore who needs to visit my black, Jewish boyfriend who works in an abortion clinic.”
Best Bit: Harry goes ballistic in a hellfire-and-brimstone American church
Worst Bit: The death of a leading character 30 minutes before the end is a shame.
If you liked… Get Smart, Casino Royale [1967 version], What’s Up, Tiger Lily? …you”ll like this
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