Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
Want more? Listen to our discussion of 'Kingsman: The Golden Circle' on SWITCHCast
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
The SWITCH team has checked out their top picks from the Perth Festival - click here to check out the reviews.x
review, Kingsman: The Golden Circle, Kingsman:, The, Golden, Circle, film, movie, latest movies, new movie, movie ratings, current movie reviews, latest films, recent movies, current movies, movie critics, new movie reviews, latest movie reviews, latest movies out, the latest movies, review film, latest cinema releases, Australian reviews, cinema, cinema reviews, Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Taron Egerton, Mark Strong, Halle Berry, Pedro Pascal, Elton John, Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges, Sophie Cookson, Matthew Vaughn film rating

KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE

★★

AN OFFENSIVELY MISJUDGED DISAPPOINTMENT

THEATRICAL REVIEW
LATEST REVIEWS
By Chris Edwards
21st September 2017

When ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ burst onto screens in early 2015, it was the kind of delightful surprise that happens all too rarely in big-budget blockbuster filmmaking. An entertainingly fresh spin on the 60s spy film by way of the modern superhero origin story, it was a crass, bombastic, inventive and fun slice of popcorn absurdity - which is why it’s such a shame to find that the much-anticipated follow-up, ‘Kingsman: The Golden Circle’, is decidedly and disappointingly inferior in every possible way.

Picking up where its predecessor left off, ‘The Golden Circle’ finds former council-estate pariah Eggsy (Taron Egerton) a newly minted fully-fledged Kingsman agent. Plot mechanics get started immediately; after some convoluted place-setting, almost the entirety of Kingsman itself is blown up by Poppy (Julianne Moore), the head of the eponymous international drug cartel. Somehow this leads to Eggsy and Merlin (a charming Mark Strong) travelling to America to seek refuge with their American counterparts, the whiskey-swilling Statesman, who just happen to have in their possession Eggsy’s mentor, a somehow reanimated Harry Hart (Colin Firth).

In case you couldn’t already tell, it’s a hot mess. The ways in which this film falls short of its predecessor - and of the best of Matthew Vaughn’s work in general - are upsettingly plentiful, as the usually reliably entertaining director turns in a bloated, lacklustre, convoluted and downright offensive sequel. There’s nothing of any weight here, as Vaughn and frequent co-writer Jane Goldman effectively remove any stakes from proceedings by killing off swathes of characters while bringing others back from the dead.

SWITCH: 'KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE' TRAILER 2

Sure, Colin Firth’s Henry Higgins-riff was one of the true highlights of the first movie, but bringing him back for a beyond tired amnesia arc with the help of a magical gel that can somehow reverse fatal headshots (and is used multiple times) seems like it may not have been the best of ideas. On top of these resurrection shenanigans, the film also stops in its tracks in order to introduce a whole slew of new American agents whose purposes are negligible and whose characterisations are nonexistent. Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges, Pedro Pascal and Halle Berry give glorified cameos, and are asked to do so little that it’s genuinely confusing as to why any of these characters exist.

Worse still is the overall rushed look of the film, which can be boiled down to one word: cheap. Where the first film looked like it was taking place (for the most part) in actual real places, here absolutely everything screams of an art department pushed to the brink. Not helping matters is the stunning ineptitude of the visual effects, which in one particular scene make James Bond’s ice-wave surfing from ‘Die Another Day’ look like a stroke of Mike Leigh-style realism, while every other scene looks like it might have been the first time literally anyone involved in the film worked with a green screen.

The ways in which this film falls short of its predecessor, and of the best of Matthew Vaughn’s work in general, are upsettingly plentiful...

But, if we’re going to talk about how this film really falls flat on its face, then we need to talk about some casual misogyny. Though no one could confuse the first film with a Kelly Reichardt-directed feminist call-to-arms, it wasn’t the toxically ignorant rape-culture encouraging garbage fire that a particular sequence in ‘The Golden Circle’ can be accused of being. Suffice it to say, it takes place at Glastonbury Festival, and it’s where the movie most aggressively feels like it was written by a thirteen-year-old douchebag who fell into a Red Bull-induced coma while jerking off to a Bond movie. It is genuinely galling that a huge studio film actually includes this sequence in 2017. Seriously.

Even if you were to somehow ignore that particular horrifically misjudged attempt at a comic setpiece, elsewhere the film continually acts like the Male Feminist from Hell, constantly ignoring and pushing to the side its female characters but still wanting credit for its tiny, meaningless attempts at being “progressive”. Nowhere in the film is there a single action scene that involves a woman. Fun fights are for boys, of course, so the girls are relegated to damsel in distress status, or cruelly punished for having an ounce of sexuality, or immediately and unironically talked down to by every male in sight. Even Poppy, the film’s ostensible supervillain, relies on male henchmen in order to be a physical threat, and her big world-endangering plan is instantly undercut by – you guessed it – worse (and less interesting) male characters.

Sure, there are some entertaining moments. Taron Egerton is a charismatic delight, as always. Julianne Moore is incapable of giving a bad performance. There are even a couple of lines that are actually funny. But none of those points can make up for the bloated mess that the rest of the film is, and they most certainly cannot excuse casual misogyny masquerading as liberalism.

This is a huge, disappointing misfire of a sequel.

FAST FACTS
RELEASE DATE: 21/09/2017
CAST: Colin Firth
Julianne Moore
Taron Egerton
Mark Strong
Halle Berry
Pedro Pascal
Elton John
Channing Tatum
Jeff Bridges
Sophie Cookson
DIRECTOR: Matthew Vaughn
WRITERS: Matthew Vaughn
Jane Goldman
PRODUCERS: Adam Bohling
David Reid
Matthew Vaughn
www.KingsmanMovie.com
KingsmanMovie
KingsmanMovie
KingsmanMovie
Want more? Listen to our discussion of 'Kingsman: The Golden Circle' on SWITCHCast 
TOP-RATED REVIEWS
The Keep - Michael Mann's cult gothic thriller hits DVD for the first time ever!
TRENDINGWIN THE KEEPMichael Mann's cult gothic thriller hits DVD for the first time ever!
Gemini Man - Seeing double with Will Smith's action thriller
TRENDINGWIN GEMINI MANSeeing double with Will Smith's action thriller
Standing Up For Sunny - A comedy without the comedy but very sweet
TRENDINGSTANDING UP FOR SUNNYA comedy without the comedy but very sweet
God of the Piano - A tale that tickles the ivories
TRENDINGGOD OF THE PIANOA tale that tickles the ivories
Underwater - A solid subaquatic monster mash
TRENDINGUNDERWATERA solid subaquatic monster mash
A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood - Mr Rogers: healing the world one lost soul at a time
TRENDINGA BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBOURHOODMr Rogers: healing the world one lost soul at a time
Inseparable Bros - A heartwarming tale about disability and the power of friendship
TRENDINGINSEPARABLE BROSA heartwarming tale about disability and the power of friendship
The Violin Player - Sex and strings
TRENDINGTHE VIOLIN PLAYERSex and strings
1917 - Sam Mendes' personal war story
TRENDING1917Sam Mendes' personal war story
Double Lover - Softcore pornography for cinephiles
TRENDINGDOUBLE LOVERSoftcore pornography for cinephiles
Bangla - A truly beautiful mess
TRENDINGBANGLAA truly beautiful mess
True History of the Kelly Gang - A magnificent deconstruction of the great Australian antihero
TRENDINGTRUE HISTORY OF THE KELLY GANGA magnificent deconstruction of the great Australian antihero
The Odd Family: Zombie on Sale - An extremely silly zomedy
TRENDINGTHE ODD FAMILY: ZOMBIE ON SALEAn extremely silly zomedy
School's Out - The children know too much
TRENDINGSCHOOL'S OUTThe children know too much
A Guide to Second Date Sex - A quintessentially awkward British romantic comedy
TRENDINGA GUIDE TO SECOND DATE SEXA quintessentially awkward British romantic comedy
In My Blood It Runs - An eye-opening tale of struggling Indigenous youth
TRENDINGIN MY BLOOD IT RUNSAn eye-opening tale of struggling Indigenous youth
Perth Festival 2020 - The reviews
TRENDINGPERTH FESTIVAL 2020The reviews
Ride Like a Girl - Melbourne Cup biopic plagued by race's questionable history
TRENDINGRIDE LIKE A GIRLMelbourne Cup biopic plagued by race's questionable history
Portrait of a Lady on Fire - A perfect film on the language of desire
TRENDINGPORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIREA perfect film on the language of desire
School of Seduction - Husband hunting in Russia
TRENDINGSCHOOL OF SEDUCTIONHusband hunting in Russia
© 2011 - 2020 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Support SWITCH | Disclaimer | Contact Us