Along with 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World,' Matthew Vaughn's big screen adaptation of the Icon comic series 'Kick-Ass' by Mike Millar and John Romita Jr. was one of the pleasant surprises of 2010. Irreverent, ultra-violent, exploitative and loaded with black humor, 'Kick-Ass' is beloved by fans and critics alike for its witty satire of the superhero genre and allowing Comic-Con geeks to fantasize that they, too, can be superheroes.
'Kick-Ass 2' picks up where 'Kick-Ass' left off, and we see Dave Lizewski (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Mindy Macready (Chloë Grace Moretz) go their separate ways. While Dave still wants to fight bad guys and defend the weak and innocent, Mindy, who's now adopted by Detective Marcus, has to hang up her purple tights and wig in order to live a normal life. It's Hit-Girl versus Mean Girls as she attempts to navigate the perilous waters of teen angst and catty high school clique bitchiness. Meanwhile, without Hit-Girl by his side, Kick-Ass joins a new 'family' of masked vigilantes called 'Justice Forever' led by former mob goon Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey) while Chris D'Amico, formerly 'Red Mist' (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), seeks revenge for the bazooka-killing of his dad at the hands of Kick-Ass by transforming himself into a villain mastermind called 'The Motherfucker.'
Like its predecessor, KA2 brilliantly balances its R-rated, blood-soaked violence and sexual content with a good dose of zaniness and humor. Once again, Chloë Grace Moretz steals the scene and shines bright as the irresistibly cute and potty-mouthed little bad-ass Hit-Girl, who told Kick-Ass to do what the title of this review says when he writhes on the ground after a brief bout with her on the training room floor. And wow, her climactic battle with The Motherfucker's über-henchwoman 'Mother Russia' is quite literally one for the ages. Therefore, I felt it's only appropriate to rename the movie accordingly in the poster below.
Sure, KA2 is a bit formulaic and predictable, but in a movie like this what's important is the journey and not the destination. And what a gleefully fun ride it is! The bittersweet ending of the movie also provided the perfect closure to the Kick-Ass/Hit-Girl saga. What can I say? It had me at 'hello.'