Kick-Ass, the 2008 super-hero dark comedy directed by Matthew Vaughn, is one of my favorite movies of all time. Not just because it's awesome and it's funny and it's totally freaking awesome, too. But because it represents something that I haven't seen in movies for a while: it's completely and utterly amoral and nihilistic. But not in a forlorn manner. It's happy to be what it is. It breaks taboos not to make any point about society or some boring crap like that. It breaks them just because it can and it looks cool.
The story about “regular” underagers donning costumes and hitting the streets to kick crime in the gonads is not making a statement about violence among children. It's not saying that 12-year-olds should go around throwing C-bombs and lopping off gangster's legs with a Naginata. It's not saying that, after they did that, that kid should also steal the cocaine money from the guy she just killed so she can buy more weapons. It's not even trying to be realistic. It's not saying anything other than “watch this small child mopping the floor with these assholes and rejoice!”, and to me that rocks major balls.
If there's one underlying subtext to Kick-Ass, it is that you should buy the goddamn ticket and watch it. It's punk-rock all the way, it scoffs at any notion that movies should have a “purpose” or a “responsibility.” It's anarchic, pure, unadulterated fun.
And that's why I'm looking forward to watching the sequel, Kick-Ass 2. Sure, Matthew Vaughn is not at the helm anymore, but what made Kick-Ass what it was wasn't the director or the writer, it was the sheer high-octane madness permeating it all.
The first trailer for the new iteration in the series was cool. Adequate, OK, but just seeing those characters doing their thing again, and now with none other than Jim Carrey tagging along for the ride, was enough to throw shivers of joy down my spine. Truth be told, I may be projecting my expectations on the movie, so it would probably have to drop the ball real hard to lose me over.
That said, I have to say that the new International trailer for Kick-Ass 2 got real close to crossing that threshold.
Everything was doing fine with all that I'd expect to see in a Kick-Ass preview – Rad action scenes, goofy costumes, and it even has its focus on Hit-Girl, who pretty much stole the spotlight and upstaged everyone else the first time around and is likely to do the same for the new movie.
Well, the premise this time around is that, after the events of the first movie, Mindy Macready, codename Hit-Girl, under the guidance of her new tutor, is trying to adapt to a more normal lifestyle for a teenager like her, so she tries to act the part around high-school, making friends, doing homework and ... uhm ... Sitting at a desk, you know, whatever else kids do in high-school (I'd probably have to do some regression therapy to remember all the horrible stuff from that time that my brain has instinctively erased from my memory), so she's put in a tough spot when she's asked by her gym teacher to do some dancing around in front of her class.
That's when the B.S. teen movie spirits kick in like a turd flopping out of a window and onto your head. To get herself out of that jam, she, no kidding ... Okay, I'm embarrassed to even write this sentence ... She pictures ninjas around her and starts throwing some kung-fu moves at them. Have I mentioned I was not kidding?
And then, when she's done, everyone in the bleachers does a standing ovation, except for the clearly "popular" girl who is probably her little rival.
I hope that isn't the kind of film it's going to be. Is the football quarterback going to ask her to the prom, too? And then when she's dancing with him he makes like a racist remark and she realizes the guy's a douche and decides to go out with her nerdy best friend from down the street instead? And before she ditches the jock she hands the Prom Queen crown to her fat classmate who is bullied by everyone?
I'm being overly dramatic. There's no indication that there's going to be any more of that kind of shenanigans from the trailers, and in truth they do look pretty bitchin' (even if the restrained budget makes itself obvious at some points), what with all the Jim Carrey action beefing up the deal.
Let's hope that that stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid scene is just a one-time slip-up from the director and nothing like that happens again in the movie.
I mean, there are too many crises going on around the world today. Humanity can't afford a bad Kick-Ass sequel. Not now.
So, for the sake of our future, and the future of our children, and the future of our children's children, and the future of our children's children's dogs, we hope and pray that Kick-Ass 2, indeed, kicks ass.