I have an exceedingly difficult time going into movies with an open mind. Whether I think the movie is similar to another or I have lofty expectations based on a trailer, I’m always judging. That is probably why I like sequels so much more than most people.
It is, essentially, expected that you compare it to its predecessor, whether that
means scrutiny or joy.
Generally a sequel disappoints (see fig. A), unexpectedly bests the previous
installment, or (in some cases, like Toy Story or Indiana Jones) continues the legacy of the original. I wish I could say Kick-Ass 2 was the latter, however it somehow does not fit into a category. I sat through the entire movie grinning like a stupid idiot yet, somehow, still left disappointed.
Kick-Ass (the first one) was a fresh take on the, now extremely popular, superhero genre. With its over-the-top cursing, ultra violence, and awesomeness, it took a lot of people by surprise. It was super fun but, most importantly, was very well made. The cast, the style, and the music were all spot on. Kick-Ass 2 didn’t have the luxury of coming out of nowhere. Expectations were high and, like all sequels, everything had to be bigger and better; and that’s where the problems lie.
The cast is, once again, great. The irreplaceable Nicholas Cage and Mark Strong are… well… replaced by Jim Carrey, Donald Faison, and Johnny Legz! (Leguizamo to the layman). The music and the style also match the high standards set by the first movie. What hurts the movie, though, is the “bigger and better” part. Nothing is bigger and nothing is better; only grosser and over-the-top-er. They took the R-rated nature of the Kickass comic (and subsequent movie) and took it way too far, with poop and F-bombs (that’s “fuck”) galore, Kick-Ass 2 pulls no punches (pun intended. I’m sorry). It was this nasty, dirty tone that had me second-guessing anything I enjoyed in the movie. It played like The Farrelly Brothers present: Kick-Ass 2. I blame this entirely on Michael Wacker who, apparently, wasn’t quite ready to make the jump from Grip to Best Boy Grip. Better luck next time, Wacker!
6.5 Heads of lettuce out of 10.