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Kingsman: The Secret Service - Blu-ray Review

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Kingsman: Secret Service - Movie Review

4 stars

Matthew Vaughn – the acclaimed director of Layer Cake, Stardust, Kick-Ass, and X-Men: First Class - returns to the comic book-minded genre with the wildly irreverent Kingsman: The Secret Service and kicks some serious cinematic ass in doing so.   Loosely based on the 2012 spy comic book series written by Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons, Vaughn’s new film is a swift, spiked-shoe kick to seat of the pants for anyone who cannot poke fun at just how serious the cinematic spy and comic book to screen business has become.

Colin Firth is Harry Hart, the ringleader of an independent international intelligence agency operating at the highest level of discretion. They are known as the Kingsmen. After a disastrous Middle East mission, the well-dressed Hart finds himself in a position of uncomfortable grief upon the death of one of his team members. He offers his phone number to the fallen member’s widow and son and life moves on.

Hart’s phone number rings years later when the widow’s son, Gary “Eggsy” Unwin (Taron Egerton), is busted for stealing a car. Hart suddenly has an opening and introduces Eggsy to the Kingsman and everything that the life of a spy offers. It’s a world full of unrealistic gadgets, super stellar suits, and strange VIP disappearances. Unfortunately, Eggsy has to pass the test. He is competing for the spot alongside another hopeful, Roxy (Sophie Cookson), but fails the last challenge given to him by Merlin (Mark Strong).

When the truth about technology tycoon Richmond Valentine (Samuel Jackson channeling some serious Blofeld-like mania) emerges and his Dr. Evil-inspired plan to take over the world is found out, the Kingsman group must kick it into high (tech) gear and figure out a way to keep it from happening. Saving the world in stylish swagger is what they are all about. Don’t believe me? There’s a clothing line inspired by these Dapper Dans hitting the clothing racks soon.

Featuring solid performances from Michael Caine, Sofia Boutella, Jack Davenport, Mark Hamill, Samantha Womack, and Richard Brake, Kingsman: The Secret Service manages to juggle its absurd comics with some engaging thrills and high-stakes adventure without dropping one single ball. Within the context of the film, everything works. The trailers just can’t sell a product as inspired as this. This is a feast of lean adventure that is heavy on the comical aspect of well-funded tailors backing a super spy ring. You either get on board and enjoy the ride or get off as soon as possible.

For all those complaining about Marvel and DC comic book films, you’d be remiss to miss this one as it absolutely nails the thrills flipping through comic books often provide. And, yes, most everything about Kingsman: The Secret Service is incredibly ridiculous. I suppose that’s another reason why I am championing it; Vaughn, once again, gets it right.

Co-written by Jane Goldman, Vaughn’s film has a thick skin that delivers some pretty wicked subversion thanks to the intelligence steering the celebrated antics. This is Kick-Ass times two and, because of the Bond jabs coming from every direction, a bit more enjoyable. If you are at all curious about this film, you should check it out. You just have to keep in mind that it is there to make you laugh … a lot. And it certainly does because never – and I do mean not once – does it EVER take itself serious.

While the film opens opposite of the much-hyped release of Fifty Shades of Grey, I certainly hope to hell that it manages to find an appreciative audience. A film like this – character-driven, action-packed, and fun – rarely comes along in the early months of the cinematic year.   I have liked every single one of Vaughn’s films. I have to say, though, that Kingsman: The Secret Service is my favorite. I will even go so far as to suggest that it is his best film yet. Some people just get better and better; Vaughn is one of those artists.

With more gadgets and well-dressed lads than a movie has any right to, Kingsman: The Secret Service is a joyously fun mission that practically does cartwheels within its own secret spy ring.

Kingsman: Secret Service - Movie Review

MPAA Rating: R for sequences of strong violence, language and some sexual content.
Runtime:
129 mins
Director
: Matthew Vaughn
Writer:
Jane Goldman, Matthew Vaughn (screenplay)
Cast:
Colin Firth, Taron Egerton, Samuel L. Jackson
Genre
: Action | Adventure | Comedy
Tagline:
Kingsman: The Secret Service
Memorable Movie Quote: "You are about to embark on the most dangerous job interview in the world."
Distributor:
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Official Site: http://www.kingsmanmovie.com/
Release Date:
February 13, 2015
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
June 9, 2015
Synopsis: Based upon the acclaimed comic book and directed by Matthew Vaughn (Kick Ass, X-Men First Class), Kingsman: The Secret Service tells the story of a super-secret spy organization that recruits an unrefined but promising street kid into the agency’s ultra-competitive training program just as a global threat emerges from a twisted tech genius.

Kingsman: Secret Service - Movie Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - June 9, 2015
Screen Formats: 2.40:1
Subtitles
: English SDH, Spanish, Portuguese, Cantonese, Estonian, Indonesian, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Malay, Mandarin (Traditional), Russian, Thai, Ukrainian, Vietnamese
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1; French: Dolby Digital 5.1; Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1; Portuguese: Dolby Digital 5.1; Russian: DTS 5.1; Thai: Dolby Digital 5.1; Ukrainian: Dolby Digital 5.1
Discs: 50GB Blu-ray Disc; Single disc (1 BD); UV digital copy; iTunes digital copy; Digital copy
Region Encoding: A

20th Century Fox releases Kingsman: The Secret Service on blu-ray with an AVC encoded 1080p transfer in 2.39:1. The film is expertly color graded due to digital cameras and the color saturation provides minute detail puncturing, replicated here in great moments. The cartoon action is sharp throughout the feature and the transfer handles all the happenings expertly. Blacks are deep and colors, as mentioned early, are varied and supple. The lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 track that accompanies the picture is just as strong, rattling window frames and walls with its immersive field of sound.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

The release contains an hour and a half of behind-the-scenes featurettes that can be viewed separately or as a longer documentary. This is pretty thorough – which is probably why there is no commentary – and covers all aspects of production from creating the comic book adaptation, to casting, the stunts, the costuming and much more. Galleries and the film's trailer are included, too.

  • Kingsman: The Secret Service Revealed (90 min)
  • Galleries (10 min)
  • Theatrical Trailer

 

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