Kingsman: The Secret Service – Review ★★★★

At some point during Kingsman, Colin Firth mentions that spy films are getting too serious. And he is right – in recent years, due to Mega-Spy Bond, James Bond (that now attracts “proper” directors to the franchise), spy films are getting further and further from the gadget, bad pun mythology that made us endure yet another close-up of Roger Moore’s face.

Enter Matthew Vaughn and the team behind Kick-Ass. They grabbed Mark Miller’s comic “The Secret Service”, gathered everything that we loved about old spy films,  slapped some good old  ultraviolence and voilá, here it is, the film that will make everyone go enlist in MI6 because, wow, how could we forget spies are so cool. (and in the meantime, it seems that Melissa McCarthy will soon enlist on the the trend as well.)

Kingsman: The Secret Service is the story of Gary “Eggsy” Unwin (Taron Egerton), a lad of the British working class, whose father was killed during a secret mission in Afghanistan. When Eggsy gets into trouble with the Justice, Harry “Galahad” Hart (Colin Firth) appears from thin air to recruit him for the “most dangerous job interview ever”. There, surrounded by posh kids, Eggsy needs to prove he is, too, Kingsman material. In the meantime, because a spy movie is only as good as its villains, Valentine, who seems to have borrowed his dress sense from Samuel L. Jackson, and helped by a blade-legged Gazelle (Sofia Boutella) plots to make the world a better place and solve, once and for all, climate change – wait, what??

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It’s been a while since a proper, intelligent popcorn film has graced us to make an appearance on the silver screen, and therefore, we welcome Kingsman as a great start for 2015. The dialogue is witty, with the occasional bad taste pun and the strange pop references (“have you ever seen the movie “Trading Places”?), the editing mouth-watering, and though we are not sure how mind-sick we are for laughing at the final “fireworks” (and we can’t say any more without spoiling it), golly gosh, this was a fun ride altogether. Colin Firth was born to play this part, and Taron Egerton delivers way above expectations, so, yes please, more of him soon. Even Michael Caine, in the short screen time he is on screen, delivers a swear word – yes, this is the kind of film where everything is possible, both breaking the stereotype (a brilliant Samuel L. Jackson playing the speech-impeded villain who cannot stand the sight of blood) and reinforcing it, with a cheeky and spoofy wink (the womanising moments between Eggsy and the Princess of Sweden). 

So yes, what the hell are you waiting for? Are we gonna stand here, or are we going to watch this repeated times?

Kingsman: The Secret Service will be released in UK cinemas on 29th January. 

Sara is originally from Coimbra, Portugal, where she studied Film Studies before moving to London to enrol in film school. Having made her first short film about her neighbour's chickens when she was 9 (a dystopian sci-fi, still her favourite genre), she is now a London-based film director and editor, and also a writer for the Portuguese Take Magazine. She is a huge fan of Lars Von Trier, Krysztof Kiéslowski, and David Lean.