The Golden Circle”
We enjoyed the first “Kingsman” movie three years ago because
it brought the charm back to the British spy drama.
And the tongue-in-cheek. And
the dapper demeanor. Not
nearly as innocuous as the old James Bond, but not nearly as grim as the
new James Bond. Suave and
sophisticated were back in the vocabulary of secret operatives.
As well as creative gadgetry. But
this overly-long sequel seems to have invested the charm in the wrong
place: in the person of the villain.
Poppy (Julianne Moore) plays the world's richest drug dealer, who
acts like the gracious hostess of a cooking show, even donning the classic
apron in her private diner. But
she regrets that the exigencies of her chosen profession conspire to
confine her to her jungle compound in Central America, where she is safe
enough, but somewhat under-stimulated.
So she kidnaps Elton John, who provides unexpected comic relief?
Eggsy (Taron Egerton) is the secret agent who's no longer an
apprentice; he's been around long enough to earn the wrath of a rejected
agent, and also to develop an outside romance, which is supposedly against
the rules, but since she's really a princess (her father's the King of
Sweden), he can hardly resist. Nor
can he resist receiving assistance from headquarters through his hidden
earpiece, when the King begins to question him about his political
But Eggsy's absence from Headquarters actually spared him, because
Poppy launched a systematic attack against all the Kingsman outposts, and
then threatens the President of the United States.
She's put a killer virus in all her drugs, and if he doesn't
appoint her the only and only official supplier, she's going to withold
Ah, but the President, while seeming to cave in with the
negotiations, actually wants Poppy to go ahead and kill all the druggies.
Instant victory for him in the drug war, right?
Wrong, marijuana-breath. There
are far too many “respectable” recreational users to risk their
immediate elimination. Or at
least that's how the Kingsman group sees it, or at least what's left of
it. They have to ask help from
their American counterparts, and they have to save the world while
wondering if one of their own is actually working against them.
There's a Keystone Kops aspect to some of the battle scenes, which
lends enough suspension of disbelief to allow most of the good guys
virtual invincibility. When
the smoke finally clears, we're still enamored with the idea that there
are some great undercover operatives out there who are looking to keep the
world safe from both dastardly deadly viruses and dreadful fashion sense.