Kick-Ass

posted Apr 29, 2010, 7:23 PM by Jeff Brandt   [ updated Apr 29, 2010, 8:41 PM ]
Despite what I'm about to say, I think Roger Ebert kicks much more ass than this movie. I had a fantastic time at the 12th Annual Ebertfest (which I'll be writing about soon), and saw 12 movies out of 13 total, most of which were outstanding.

All of that said, his review of this movie -- and his recent "video games can never be art" rants -- are hopelessly dating him.

Kick-Ass
, as you may know, is a superhero satire -- based on an eight-issue comic series by industry giants Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. -- that both pokes holes in and celebrates the genre. You've got your nerdy high schooler (Aaron Johnson), a guy with no real superpowers or advanced training, but who saves up enough cas h to buy a full-body swimsuit on the internet and can take a beating due to his dead nerve endings.

He becomes an instant internet sensation when his fight with a couple of street thugs gets recorded on some bystanders' camera phones, which leads him to team up with a couple of more advanced "superheroes," middle-aged, insane, goofball Big Daddy (Nic Cage) and his 11-year-old daughter Hit Girl (Chloe Moretz).

Ebert's main objection to the film seems to be its lack of compassion . . . or something. That it's morally reprehensible for this 11-year-old girl character to be slashing people with double-headed spears and whatnot. Because school shootings exist, we can't have a sense of humor about this kind.

What can I say? I guess there is an unbridgeable gap for Mr. Ebert. He simply doesn't have a comic nerd's sense of humor, and I can't blame him for that.

My main criticism of the movie is that there was kind of imbalance in the humor. The first half of the movie was joke after joke -- utterly hilarious and not serious at all. But the second half was a little more sober, more like a standard action movie. I just sensed an unevenness about it, as though it started off creatively and ended a little more generic.

Still worth a watch in my book, but maybe not one you absolutely must see immediately.



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