In this Kingsman: The Golden Circle review, we discuss strange plot lines and the failure of sequels.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle is the sequel to Kingsman: The Secret Service, which was one of my favourite movies released in 2014. And, as with anything successful in the movie business, it spawned a sequel.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle is an entertaining flick that has a heavy reliance on cartoon violence and slapstick comedy. Yet it fails to achieve what the original did – grab hold of my attention and refuse to let it go.
Director Matthew Vaughn (who also co-wrote the script with Jane Goldman) decided to make the sequel louder in terms of stunts, action sequences and music.
Unfortunately the story and characters took a back seat to the big bang followed by bigger bang approach.
The central plot of Kingsman: The Golden Circle revolves around a drug kingpin, Poppy (Julianne Moore), who decides to infect her products with a virus that can quickly kill their users, unless illicit drugs are legalised.
If she gets her way, only then will she release the antidote.
To make sure no one stops her, she launches missile attacks at all Kingsman agents.
Eggsy (Taron Egerton) and Merlin (Mark Strong) follow the doomsday scenario and team up with their “brothers” in America, who are called “Statesmen”. The Statesmen own a brewery, which subsequently leads to their agents being named after types of alcohol (shotgun Jagermeister).
This leads to introductions of Tequila (Channing Tatum), lassoo wielding Whiskey (Pedro Pascal), Champagne (Jeff Bridges) and the Statesman version of Merlin – Ginger Ale (Halle Berry).
Through some convoluted reasoning, The Statesmen also have amnesia affected, butterfly obsessed Harry Hart (Colin Firth) in residence.
There are some needless subplots. What subplots you ask? Here’s a list:
1 – Tequila falling foul with Poppy’s drugs.
2 – The group trying to shock Harry into remembering who he is.
3 – The American President wanting drug users to die.
4 – Whiskey having his own agenda in dealing with the blackmail situation.
5 – Eggsy navigating a relationship with his Princess girlfriend (Hanna Alstrom) while being a Kingsman.
6 – Watch for the rather bizarre sequence of Eggsy seducing Charlie’s (Edward Holcroft) ex-girlfriend (Poppy Delevingne) to tag and track her.
7 – There’s also Poppy holding captive a superstar music celebrity (who becomes a central figure in the finale) for no apparent reason.
All these subplots are tied together by a series of action sequences and stunts, which lead to over two hours of run time.
I was disappointed that Bridges’, Berry’s characters were underused, and it felt like Channing Tatum’s character was an afterthought.
As a result, the “Statesmen” side of the story was skipped over in terms of character development.
There’s a nonsensical bar fight that’s a throwback to the original. It was a rather laboured attempt to showcase Whiskey’s fighting skills, framed around Harry’s problems with returning to active duty.
The rest of the film revolves around the efforts of Whiskey, Eggsy, Merlin and Harry to find Poppy’s location and have her release the antidote.
I think the final act of the film is probably the most entertaining. It showcases the skills of both Statesmen and Kingsman representatives.
Was I entertained? Yes, for the first hour or so. But I started losing interest soon after.
If you want a mindless action film with some good jokes, then this is the movie for you. However, it’s not unreasonable to wait for when a streaming service decides to show it.