Kingsman: The Secret Service renews faith in spy movies

BY: MICHELLE VALDEZ

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Kingsman: The Secret Service brings a light, laugh-worthy film to theaters, while challenging the routinely romantic movies released Valentine’s Day weekend. Kingsman centers on the life of street kid Gary “Eggsy” Unwin (Taron Egerton) and his recruitment by Harry Hart (Colin Firth) into an elite training program for a secret spy agency known as "Kingsmen.” Eggsy brings an unrefined personality to the organization that is traditionally exclusive to the privileged and high-educated.

Although his recruiter Hart comes from a privileged past, he shares Eggsy’s unwillingness to conform to the organization’s strict guidelines and outdated philosophies.

The unlikely mentor-mentee bond showcases the best in British humor, while tech genius Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) brings in some American style and an unconventional plan to reverse global warming.

At the start of the film, audiences are thrown into the graphically cringe-worthy violent nature of the film. Writers Jane Goldman and Matthew Vaughn bring the bloody mess from Kick-Ass to Kingsman with the same satirical brilliance in hand.

Colin Firth is Colin Firth like you have never seen him. The usually dramatic actor brings action in full gear to portray the veteran elite spy, codename Galahad. Taron Egerton without a doubt places himself on the map for breakout star in 2015. There is no doubt his Google-search ranking spiked following the opening weekend release.

Fans of classic James Bond movies will enjoy the comical transition from serious to satire, while comedy nerds will enjoy the jabs at the classic, structured genre. What many fans may not know is the film is based off the comic book series, The Secret Service written by Mark Miller and Dave Gibbons.

The satirical nature of the film is exaggerated (in a good way) by the characters’ understanding of the roles they play. Valentine embraces his villainous role, as well as his love for spy movies, while the rest of the cast plays into or against the classic spy movie routine.

Classic spy movies are predictable and usually involve a mysterious woman who serves mostly as a romantic love interest. Kingsman features two strong women without blatantly tying them to a relationship.

Double-amputee Gazelle (Sofia Boutella) redefines the villainous minion and makes us question why no one had thought of this character before. Roxy (Sophie Cookson) plays a spy candidate who deals with realistic fears that any non-experienced spy would face without the unnecessary love interest to validate her character’s involvement in the film.

Kingsman brings us the best of classic spy movies, an all-star cast and humor that gives the genre a fresh start for the upcoming year. With British spies, strong female characters and men in suits what more could we ask for? A sequel maybe?