For those who have grown tired of excessively grim and serious spy movies, Matthew Vaughn’s upcoming film Kingsman: The Secret Service might be the perfect antidote. Based on the comic book series by Mark Millar, Kingsman stars Colin Firth as a master spy who recruits gifted but directionless street thug Eggsy (Taron Egerton) into Kingsman, an independent intelligence agency dedicated to grooming the next generation of gentleman spies.
Obviously Eggsy doesn’t quite fit in with the usual tweed-wearing, privately educated Kingsman recruits, but he does possess skills that the agency will need when a psychotic (but squeamish) villain called Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) starts experimenting with biological weaponry. Before he can save the world, however, Eggsy first needs to pass the most dangerous job interview in the world and get a My Fair Lady style makeover.
As Firth’s character, Harry, explains in a new featurette for Kingsman: The Secret Service, a spy’s three-piece suit is the new armor (which may be taken literally, given the number of gadgets at their disposal) and the Kingsman agents are supposed to be the new knights: protecting the world but taking not credit for their heroics. They also each get a free puppy when they join up, which seems like a good deal.
Vaughn once again teamed up with his X-Men: First Class partner Jane Goldman to write the screenplay for Kingsman: The Secret Service, which also stars Sofia Boutella as Valentine’s henchwoman Gazelle, who has a deadly set of prosthetic feet, and Mark Strong as another Kingsman senior.
Obviously the premise of a kid being hand-picked for spy status isn’t new – Agent Cody Banks and Alex Rider: Stormbreaker have been here before – but Vaughn’s film looks a lot more violent than either of those films without descending into the trap of gritty realism. The spirit of Kick-Ass definitely seems to be present, albeit with a straight-laced English twist, and Kingsman looks like a fun, outlandish spy movie to warm the winter season.
Kingsman: The Secret Service premieres February 13th, 2015.