Kingsman: The Secret Service
The King’s Peach
Release Date: 29 January
15 | 123 minutes Director: Matthew Vaughn Cast: Colin Firth, Samuel L Jackson, Michael Caine, Mark Strong, Taron Egerton, Sofia Boutella
Matthew Vaughn’s third
comic adaptation in a row returns him to the creator of his first, Mark Millar. While Kick- Ass riffed on superheroes, Kingsman takes on the superspy. Inspired by old- school Bond, there’s a yearning here for the days before 007 got all serious.
The story revolves around elite espionage team Kingsman. Our guide is Harry Hart ( Colin Firth), but he’s not our main man; that’s teenage tearaway Gary “Eggsy” Unwin ( Taron Egerton), the son of a fellow agent, who died due to a mistake Harry made. Raised on an estate by his mum, he’s heading for reform school. But Harry’s kept an eye on him, even giving him a number to ring when in trouble. After a spell in custody, Eggsy finally dials the digits.
And so Harry takes Eggsy under his wing. Watching the plummy Harry tutor the hoodie- wearing Eggsy is a delight: think My Fair Lady meets Moonraker. With the agency a man down after an agent’s killed, Eggsy is put forward for intensive training.
Like Millar’s original, Kingsman is defiantly self- aware – although Vaughn tones it down. While Millar’s story saw celebrities kidnapped, opening with Mark Hamill plunging to his death, Vaughn ditches the famous faces, although he nods to it, with Hamill cast as a boffin snatched by biotech pioneer Valentine ( Samuel L Jackson). Jackson’s lisping baddie is good value, even if he’s not quite on the Blofeld level. But it’s Harry’s relationship with Eggsy that draws you in. The plot is a bit daft, and when that takes over Kingsman begins to lose its lustre. As good as Egerton is, he’s not quite able to sustain our interest for two hours.
Vaughn, however, has hit on a great twist on the action flick – a pinch of Lock, Stock cheekiness with a dash of ’ 80s retro. It’s not perfect, but there’s enough to keep the blood pumping. James Mottram As he’s a well- spoken lad, to prepare for his role Egerton watched movies like Harry Brown and Ill Manors.
Dolce & Gabbana’s new collection was nothing if not eclectic.