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Kingsman: The Secret Service - Film Review

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by Zac and Kiri (subscribe)
Reviewers from Brisbane, Australia.
Published February 25th 2015

Kingsman: The Secret Service came close to being a good movie. It is a tongue-in-cheek comedy spy film, which constantly references and almost parodies old spy flicks, in the line of James Bond and Maxwell Smart.

"Eggsy" (Taron Egerton), a rough-around-the-edges young man with a military lineage, is recruited by the dapper and deadly Harry Hart (Colin Firth) to compete for a place in an independent spy agency. Then add a super villain, played by Samuel L Jackson who refreshingly did not have Nazi or religious associations, and his bladed-limbed female sidekick (Sofia Boutella), who have a plan to induce mass homicide in order to save the planet.

The film, directed by Matthew Vaughn (Kick Ass, X-Men First Class), has all the great aspects of the old James Bond's the gadgets, the colourful villain with a far-fetched master plan, and the unrealistic but talented henchman (or henchwoman in this case). But unfortunately it also retained the propensity for marginalising and objectifying female characters. It would not have been mention-worthy if it had not been for the final scene, which contained a very lewd joke, which seemed out of place with the rest of the movie.

True, there were some guffaws in the audience, so not everyone was offended and many people did appreciate Vaughn's humour. However there has been some criticism of this joke in mainstream media to which Vaughn responded, saying (I paraphrase) he was surprised that the audience weren't offended by violent scenes earlier in the film but were offended by overt explicit objectification of women. Casual sexism at its finest "calm down ladies. It was just a joke. Don't be so hysterical". For a more in depth and eloquent argument of this point see this article (warning: spoilers).

To get down to the bottom of it - before the final scene, I would have given it 3.5/5 stars. However, as a whole it gets 1/5 stars.

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When: Now showing
Where: In cinemas
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