‘Kingsman’ thrills in Bond spy spoof

Posted March 2, 2015


In a thrilling spoof of the James Bond theme, “Kingsman: The Secret Service” provides an imaginative, adrenaline-pumping plot with well-staged fight scenes and solid acting from main characters.

“Kingsman” is spy action-adventure film, directed by Matthew Vaughn (“Kick Ass”, “X-Men: Days of Future Past”), and based on the comic book The Secret Service. The film stars Colin Firth, Samuel L. Jackson, Taron Egerton, Mark Strong and Michael Caine.

The plot begins with a mission gone wrong, where secret agent Harry “Galahad” Hart (Firth) is unable to prevent the death of another fellow agent. Feeling guilty, he provides a bravery medal equipped with a phone number and coded message to the deceased man’s widow and young son, Gary “Eggsy” Unwin (Egerton) for any future favor.

Seventeen years later, Gazelle — a badass assassin with bladed prosthetic legs—kills another Kingsman agent, Lancelot, while trying to rescue a climate scientist. Gazelle works for the Internet billionaire Richmond Valentine (Jackson) who develops as the key super villain for his outrageous fear of global warming and human overpopulation.

Ignorant of his own potential, Eggsy now lives in a grim estate in South London as an unemployed, Royal Marines training dropout who spends time with thugs and risks life behind bars. After taking a car for a joyride and landing in jail, Eggsy contacts Galahad for bailout; the two are reunited.

Eggsy learns of the Kingsman and is offered an alternative to his current lifestyle: to train for the opportunity to replace secret agent Lancelot and become the newest member of the secret service.

“I have nothing to lose,” says Eggsy and he accepts.

After meeting the Kingsman leader Arthur “Chester King” (Caine), Eggsy joins a team of young recruits to train for a last-man-standing type of duel for the only Kingsman spot. He endures a series of challenges overseen by experienced agent, Merlin (Strong), and after making it to the final two; Eggsy is defeated for the opportunity.

Meanwhile, Valentine, who previously announced a global giveaway of SIM cards that allow free phone calls and Internet access, has killed Galahad after it was discovered that the Kingsman were tracking and aware of Valentine’s plans to use his SIM cards and satellite network to cause a massive harvest of the human population—in attempt to save the Earth from further environmental damage—and sparing only select individuals that Valentine deemed worthy of living.

Eggsy then discovers that Chester King is involved in Valentine’s plans and is one of the selected members for survival. To honor Galahad, Eggsy kills Chester King and partners with Merlin and the winning agent to replace Lancelot in order to put a stop to Valentine, Gazelle and their entire operation.

Between scenes and climax peaks, “Kingsman” is never short of cheeky language, dark humor (even 007 and Star Wars references), graphic violence and over-the-top action bits. This film makes the viewer gasp, chuckle and brace themselves for wild scenes. Although it the idea of a secret service is believable, some of the scenes were not, however still made for a good script.

The acting is strong in “Kingsman” and the cast was well selected. Overall, it is a surprising, yet satisfying film with mystery and suspense that could potentially develop into multiple sequels. Recommended.

  • Title: “Kingsman: The Secret Service”
  • Director: Matthew Vaughn
  • Released: Feb. 13, 2015
  • Starring: Colin Firth, Samuel L. Jackson, Taron Egerton, Mark Strong, Michael Caine
  • MPAA Rating: R for sequences of strong violence, language and some sexual content
  • Runtime: 129 minutes
  • Rating: 3/5 stars