Kingsman - The Golden Circle: An absence of novelty
Long, unoriginal, and too much going on simultaneously, Part 2 isn't sufficiently impressive
Kingsman: The Golden Circle acknowledges all the facets that made the first part successful. It is filled with the same fetishization of violence and suave over-the-top daredevilry, but goes one step further with its stunts to seem even more ridiculous. While Kingsman: The Secret Service may have had its moments, it was not a film that had me floored. At least Part 1 had the ever-stylish Colin Firth attempting to make his protégé, Eggsy, into the ultimate gentleman superspy. Firth plays a secondary role in The Golden Circle, so that essential bit of panache and wit are indeed missing. The stylised action that is supposed to elicit roaring laughter may have you snigger a little here and there, but most of the supposedly comic parts aren’t that funny. Julianne Moore, who plays Poppy Adams, the primary antagonist belonging to The Golden Circle, is perhaps the high point of film. Her crazed character, bent on holding the world to ransom in order to become the drug kingpin of the globe, is delivered with just the right amount of bonkers for a decent laugh.
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Cast: Taron Egerton, Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Mark Strong, Halle Berry
One year after the events of the previous film, Eggsy has taken the place of his mentor, Galahad, at Kingsman. He is now in a committed relationship with Princess Tilde. A failed assassination attempt on Eggsy by a former disgruntled Kingsman employee leads to a security breach in the agency’s system. While Eggsy is dining with his girlfriend’s parents in Sweden, the rest of his colleagues (including Roxy) are strategically wiped out across the board. The only other survivor, barring Eggsy, is Merlin. After an initial distrust of each other’s real intentions, the duo follows the Doomsday Protocol. This leads them to the Statesman, a bourbon distillery in Kentucky serving as a front for a secret spy organisation. After being briefed about The Golden Circle and its plans, Eggsy and Merlin are unexpectedly reunited with Galahad. The only catch is that the latter remembers nothing of what happened to him, and fails to recognise his two partners.
The film tries to go bigger and better than its predecessor in every conceivable way. The action is more stylised, the plot stuffs in more than it can chew, the gags are supposed to be even more uproarious. Unfortunately, it falls heavily short on each count. Homage is paid to Part 1, with a recreation of the famous 'Manners Maketh Man' sequence, but The Golden Circle fails to retain enough originality of its own to stand by itself. But for two truly humorous scenes (the introduction of Poppy Adams to the audience, and Elton John executing flying kicks against his guards at will), the comic quotient is really stale. At two hours and twenty one minutes, the film is ridiculously long and boring to get through without fidgeting. Matthew Vaughn may have done all right with his ode to histrionic violence in Kingsman: The Secret Service, but his second effort at pretty much the same thing, with a tad more thrown in there, loses novelty rather quickly. Tarantino is one of the modern masters when it comes to depicting graphic violence as an art form. If there is to be another film in the series, Vaughn may be well advised to take cues from the former.