May 22, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

At the Movies: They Grow Up So Fast:

The old adage that comic books are for kids has gone by the wayside in the last couple years thanks to the explosion of popular comic book franchises on the big screen. Cult following comics and graphic novels are being adapted for films in astounding numbers and the trend has no line on the horizon. Instead of reaching for the New York Times best-seller list, many filmmakers are looking at the world of comic books for future projects.

Author Mark Millar’s comic book series, Kick-Ass, is only two years old and has already made it to the theatres. The new film directed by Matthew Vaughn, stays very loyal to the feeling of the comic, most notably the tongue in cheek ultra-violence. If anything, Kick-Ass reiterates that the comic book world is full of adult fans.

Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson) is your normal, run of the mill high-school nerd. He has no girlfriend, doesn’t play sports, and spends most of his time hanging with his two buddies in a comic book shop. He fantasizes about super heroes, among other testosterone filled daydreams, questioning why no one has really ever become a vigilante, a real life super hero. Dave decides that it’s high time, ordering a wet suit and mask off the Internet and training on rooftops to become the hero, Kick-Ass. Unfortunately, his crime fighting skills are not up to par and his first altercation sends him to the operating room, resulting in the inability to feel pain due to nerve damage.

Finally after weeks of recovery, Dave returns to patrol the streets of New York City and successfully defends a man in a gang fight. The incident goes viral with amateur footage of Dave fighting off the gang members, creating not only an excitement in the comic book circle but also inspiring other people to follow in his footsteps. However, after another close run-in with serious injury, Dave is rescued by an 11-year-old, knife wielding, foul mouth, killing machine named Hit Girl (Chloe Grace Moretz). Her partner, Big Daddy (Nicholas Cage), is waiting in the wings and Dave realizes they are the real deal heroes. Dave is finally getting some attention from his longtime crush (even if she thinks he is gay), and decides he’s not cutout for being a hero. But a drug kingpin whose operation has been meddled with by Kick-Ass is out for revenge, pulling all the vigilantes into a deadly and blood spewing fight to the death.

Kick-Ass is based on a comic book, but in no way is it intended for kids. It is a blood splattered, high-octane, raunchy mockery of the super hero genre, and the viewer needs to understand this when they see a youngster cursing and slaying victims with no remorse. The tone of the film becomes lost with all the violence, humorous references and serious undertones, but achieves what it really wants, a reaction. Leave the kids at home and turn off your moral compass for this one.


MARK SCHROEDER

Mirror Film Criticmark@smmirror.com

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