Today: February 22, 2024

Kingsman: The Golden Circle

Before seeing Kingsman: The Golden Circle you should know two things. One; the violence is toned down, a little. Two; the innuendos and crass humour have been turned up. With that in mind though it’s fair to say Kingsman: The Golden Circle delivers on the first film’s promise and gives fans of the original exactly what they want.

With Kingsman coming under attack from a mysterious drug cartel Eggsy (Taron Egerton) and Merlin (Mark Strong) have to go off radar in order to track down their would-be assassins. Said drug cartel is led by the bat-crap crazy Poppy (Julianne Moore) who has plans on ending the war on drugs. But in order to defeat her, and her robot dogs, Eggsy will turn to Statesman, Kingsman’s US counterpart.

It’s worth remembering that Kingsman is essentially a pastiche of James Bond, but you know, in a satirical way rather than a slapstick comedy kind of Austin Powers way. Throw in some genuinely stunning action sequences, the kind Austin Powers reserved for a pastiche movie version of itself starring Tom Cruise, and Kingsman: The Golden Circle feels like a timely and much needed antidote to James Bond’s current pouting.

The Golden Circle lacks some of the character of the first film, Eggsy is no longer the fish out of water but rather the super agent that even his mentor from the last film has to turn to. But where it really works is instilling genuine heart into the mix. As a direct middle finger to Bond Eggsy has the decency to call his girlfriend to ask if it’s okay to seduce a target in order to save the world. Yes, it’s ridiculous in many ways but highlights Eggsy to be the true gentleman spy, rather than a misogynistic pig. What’s more, writers Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman take the time to really invest in the characters’ relationships, so when things go bad you actually have a sense of emotion that is often lost on films of this nature.

While the action is stunning, Vaughn seemingly managing to capture almost entire action sequences in single takes (presumably with the help of CGI), it does sometimes feel like style over substance. The desperation to shoehorn in the cliched Bond setpieces, even if they are turned up to 11, feels distracting from the main plot. Given that the running time is over two hours that is not a great thing and actors like Julianne Moore’s screen time is frustratingly cut short as a result.

The performances are all solid with Mark Strong on wonderful form, his Merlin being revealed to be a John Denver fan – Country Road sung with a thick Scottish accent is surprisingly moving. Meanwhile Taron Egerton continues to show why he should be on most casting agents “To Cast” list. He carries the whole affair with such charm and maturity that it’s hard not to love his Eggsy.

A teenager’s wet dream of a ridiculous movie Kingsman: The Golden Circle delivers a whole lot of fun a whole little story.

Alex Moss Editor

Alex Moss’ obsession with film began the moment he witnessed the Alien burst forth from John Hurt’s stomach. It was perhaps ill-advised to witness this aged 6 but much like the beast within Hurt, he became infected by a parasite called ‘Movies’. Rarely away from his computer or a big screen, as he muses on Cinematic Deities, Alex is “more machine now than man. His mind is twisted and evil”. Email:

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