Released as Kingsman: El Circulo Dorado here in Mexico, this film sees British director Matthew Vaughn team up with some of Britain’s finest acting talent for a second time to continue the Kingsman story.
It stars Mark Strong, Colin Firth and the versatile Taren Egerton. If you have not seen Egerton’s turn as Eddie Edwards in Eddie The Eagle, I urge you to do so. You will be hard pressed to believe it is the same actor! All of the original actors return, along with many well-known American faces, including Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges, Julianne Moore and Halle Berry. We get Elton John as, well, Elton John. We also ‘meat’ British character actor Keith Allen (you will just have to go and see the film to get that one).
With the majority of The Kingsmen and their headquarters destroyed, the remaining members have been forced to travel across the pond and seek out help from The Statesman, an American organisation similar to theirs.
Eggsy (Egerton) and Merlin (Strong) meet Agent Tequila (Tatum) for the first time. Despite a good first scene together, Tatum is then sparingly used, which is a pity because I think he is just the right actor for this type of film. So instead of Tatum, our heroes team up with Agent Whiskey adeptly played by Pedro Pascal and his lasso or skipping rope, depending on which side of the Atlantic you were born.
The first film was very good in its use of supporting characters, such as Eggsy’s mum and stepdad. But this film lacks these touches. The action also feels over-styled and just that little too far-fetched even for The Kingsman. Although it did not feel like its nearly two-and-a-half-hour runtime.
I would strongly advise seeing the first chapter before watching this. It will help you get all the little nuances, such as the bar-room fight scene. This week’s star of the show is Elton John and I never envisaged writing this next line – I even enjoyed the 70 year-old’s fight scene.
In summary, I did enjoy the film, but with a cast including five Oscar winners I had hoped for more. I think some of that was driven by affection for the characters developed in their first outing. As a stand-alone film it is OK, but I hope for an improvement from Vaughn in the third installment. If the first outing was a right royal 8, this one is only a stately 6.5 out of 10.