Monday, 20th August 2018
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Kingsman

Made by the same people that brought you KICK ASS this film shares many of the same sensibilities as that movie. It is funny, smart and more than a little violent. The plot of the film is that there is an evil billionaire who wants to get rid of much of the world's population as he can and because he has the time and the resources to do it he is about to put his plan into action.

There is only one force that can stop the man and that is the Kingsmen, an elite branch of the British secret service that has been operating undetected for over two hundred and fifty years, recruiting its operatives from amongst the elite of the British upper class. However in this film there is something of a change in the Kingsmen's recruiting plans. Seventeen years previously the Kingsmen recruited a man who didn't come from the upper classes but unfortunately he died on his first mission saving another Kingsman in the process.

This man, played by Colin Firth, feels a depth of gratitude to the man and says that if his family ever needs help then they should phone a certain number with a particular message.

Fast forward all those years and now child of the dead man, played by Taron Egerton, has grown up and is looking for help. Firth helps him out and also sees him as a potential recruit. Egerton agrees to go through the process and is whisked off to training. The only thing is that only one of the recruits will get a position. Almost all of the film is taken up with the recruitment process with people dropping out one by one.

Egerton appears to be one of the top candidates but at the last moment he refuses to carry out a task and is sent down. All throughout this the evil billionaire is putting his plan into action and by the time that he is ready to go the Kingmen have finally figured out what he is up to.

Firth is killed by the man and Egerton devastated by his loss rejoins the Kingsmen and with a few sidekicks goes to finally tackle the bad guy. There is much to recommend this movie, it is bright and sharp with some good turns by some great actors. It is violent at times but it is cartoonish more than anything else.

The biggest drawback is the fact that it is way too long, something that it has in common with KICK ASS. The sequel to this movie has already come out in cinemas so it's good to see that the characters are still around, hopefully that movie won't be as long and as drawn out as this one.

American Assassin

Even though this is a CBS movie the film has much to recommend it and is not your usual straight to tv affair. The story revolves around a man whose girlfriend is murdered in a terrorist attack just minutes after he has proposed to her.

He makes it his life's mission to track down and kill the men that were responsible for her death. He is so hell bent on revenge that it isn't that surprising that within a short amount of time he is being tracked by the CIA. They don't however see him as a threat but a possible asset that they can use for themselves. They approach him and he agrees so his training begins. The training is brutal but he survives and is brought onto active missions.

His first major mission involves him being part of a team that is trying to track down a group that is trying to buy up all the components needed to make a nuclear bomb. Each time they are near their target they miss out on it and before long it's clear, even though they are travelling over half the globe, that their target is one step ahead of them. That is not so surprising when it turns out that the target is an American who went through the same training as the man did himself. He knows their moves and how they think.

There are a lot of twists and turns in this film and as you might expect quite a bit of violence as well. Of course the baddies don't win, that wouldn't do, but that doesn't mean that it's an outright victory for the good guys either.

It's an interesting movie, well made and well acted.

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