Kingsman is a terrific film. It's not highbrow, it's just really funny, even in the bits that probably shouldn't be. It stars Michael Caine as an old snob and Colin Firth as the modernising influence(!) in a secret service run independently of governmental organisations. Its only affiliation is to good tailoring, leading to martial arts performed in a tweed suit. The old guard have to recruit the next generation of spies to their company, and Firth's choice is newcomer Taron Egerton whose combination of cheeky chappy rudeboy and debonair operator suggest his rise to fame and fortune will probably be swift and sure. Mark Strong is well worth watching as the trainer and technician of the young spies.
Samuel L Jackson is a terrific baddy with a terrific lisp, and his henchwoman is Sofia Boutella, better known as a dancer and choreographer, but here with deadly blade legs. The plot is suitably ludicrous, and cheerfully cynical about the regard politicians have for their voters.
I've been looking forward to seeing this film since catching a trailer back in November, and it had me chuckling from before Colin Firth's first line ("Shit!") through to the climax. The great thing about the James Bond franchise being back on its feet is that it's a better target to take the mick out of, and Matthew Vaughn and co know all the old spy movies well enough to be irreverent to all of them. It's great to see a movie that's been made by people rather than committees, and that hasn't changed scriptwriter three times during its lifetime.
Other good things: a cameo from Mark Hamill as a climate scientist, some ridiculous dogs, the fact that about twenty minutes from the end of our screening some people shuffled into the front of the auditorium, who (it transpired) thought they were watching some trailers before Into The Woods, the fact that today Taron Egerton has ever so slightly fewer twitter followers than Daily Info but I can't believe that'll last long, the backwards car chase, the soundtrack, the likelihood there'll be a sequel in time.
As Colin Firth says, what makes a gentleman is not his accent, it's being comfortable in his own skin. This film is not high art, but it's absolutely comfortable with itself, and as a result so are its audience.