Kingsman: The Secret Service - DVD Review

'an occasionally irreverent, stupendously witty take on the spy genre, cut through with people pointing out that the whiskey is so good 'you will shit''

Matthew Vaughn makes fun films. Going all the way back to Layer Cake, there is arguably no director operating outside of the Spielberg level whose filmography you can look at and come away recognising that each production values giving its audience satisfaction. Kingsman: The Secret Service, for better or worse, is no exception.

On the one hand, this is an occasionally irreverent, stupendously witty take on the spy genre, cut through with people pointing out that the whiskey is so good 'you will shit' and Samuel L. Jackson cutting free as only he can as a lispy super-villain with a plan even he occasionally seems to not understand. Kingsman doesn't so much romp as traditional actioners do, but fashionably frolics with carefree abandon amongst genres and tropes, almost always pausing to satisfy.

It is though, still a Matthew Vaughn film, which means that it favours stylisation and satisfaction above everything else, including important things such as character and plot. The former of those might see Taron Egerton putting in an impressive turn as Eggsy, but the character himself is a one-dimensional male version of the 'tart with a heart' character, somewhat condescendingly claiming to represent and explain the reasons behind a dissatisfied social class. The plot meanwhile is about as predictable and formulaic as these things come, showing once again that even if you are aping a genre, it is not enough simply to copy its own tropes: you need to do something new with them.

There has been comment that the final scene is sinisterly sexist and I can see that argument, though whilst it doesn't match the tone of the rest of the film I would probably argue instead that it is actually in-keeping with Vaughn's raison d'etre: make them laugh, keep them entertained and bugger the rest.





By Sam Turner. Sam is editor of Film Intel, and can usually be found behind a keyboard with a cup of tea. He likes entertaining films and dislikes the other kind. He's on , Twitter and several places even he doesn't yet know about.

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