Director: Matthew Vaughn
Cast: Nicolas Cage, Chloe Moretz, Aaron Johnson
In the past few years, several films, TV shows and comic books have tried to broach the idea of superheroes in the real world. None have done it as well and as entertainingly as “Kick-Ass,” based on the comic book of the same name. Starting off with a basic question (“How come nobody ever actually tried to be a superhero?”), the movie follows awkward teen Dave Lizewski (Johnson) as he dons a mask, becomes Kick-Ass, and tries to make the world a better place — with bloody and painful results.
What makes “Kick-Ass” really work is its blend of reality and fantasy, with bursts of hyper violence punctuated by very real consequences. Throughout the story, director Matthew Vaughn maintains a light tone that never becomes dismissive or overindulgent. The steadily maintained sense of humor is probably the film’s second-greatest strength.
Its first, though, is 13-year-old Chloe Moretz, who stars as the pint-sized and deadly Hit-Girl. Moretz steals absolutely every scene she’s in. Guided into a life of vigilante justice by her father, Big Daddy (a delightfully kooky Nicolas Cage), she racks up a higher body count than most any other middle-schooler in film history. It’s only a matter of time before fans are clamoring for a “Hit-Girl” movie.