"Manners Make the Man, But Not Necessarily a Good Movie"
KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE is a sequel that ramps up ridiculous action and plot elements about the elite spy organization that poses as a tailor shop called the Kingsman. A little less offensive than the first movie and more entertaining, with some positive Christian content, KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE still misses the mark of being a great movie that’s appropriate for moviegoers.
Eggsy, the young recruit from the first movie who helped save the world, but not without losing his mentor Galahad (Colin Firth), is the Kingsman’s top agent. He’s also in a somewhat serious relationship with the Princess of Sweden, Hanna, whom he met in the previous movie. When a former recruit of the Kingsman who was thought dead tries to kidnap Eggsy, the Kingsman must figure out why. Before they are able to learn who, the Kingsman headquarters bombed and nearly everyone involved is killed. The only two surviving members are Eggsy and Merlin (Mark Strong), the trainer/tech support for the agents.
Merlin and Eggsy must open the doomsday vault that the Kingsman have in place in case of just such a situation. They learn they must go to Kentucky where the Statesman organization is, an American version of the Kingsman that’s led by Champagne, aka “Champ” (Jeff Bridges). Statesman is a whiskey company that’s worth trillions of dollars, so with their support, maybe they can find out who tried to completely eliminate the Kingsman. The Statesman agents include Agent Tequila (Channing Tatum), Whiskey (Pedro Pascal) and their tech support person Ginger Ale (Halle Berry). Merlin and Eggsy also learn that agent Galahad is actually alive and that the Statesman saved him, though he suffers from memory loss.
Meanwhile, the movie’s 1970s nostalgic villain, Poppy Adams (Julianne Moore), hides away in the jungles of Cambodia running her drug empire. Her desire is to run a legal drug empire just as profitable as a company like Statesman. In order to get this, she ironically spikes all her drugs with a deadly poison that infects millions across the world. Poppy tells the President of the United States (Bruce Greenwood) that if he doesn’t legitimize her company, everyone who used her drugs will die from the poison since she’s the only one with the antidote. The President, however, secretly doesn’t care if millions of “druggies” die, because then he’d essentially win the war on drugs.
Since Tequila, one of the Statesman’s own agents, is also infected, Eggsy and Merlin work with Statesman to find Poppy and the antidote to save the world. Can Eggsy keep his relationship with Hanna, and can he also help Galahad get back to normal?
KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE is purposefully colorful, outlandish and highly exaggerated. The heavily coordinated action sequences don’t even try to be realistic, which gives the filmmakers room to make the movie as over-the-top as possible. The characters are much more likable in this sequel, with touching friendships between Eggsy, Merlin and Galahad.
That said, the plot leaves much to be desired. A great spy movie is more than cool toys and fight scenes, it’s intricate plots with big stakes. Sadly, the plot of THE GOLDEN CIRCLE is fairly simplistic and uninteresting.
The movie’s statement on the war on drugs is confusing too. In one respect, drug use is seen negatively since it poisons everyone, and one character at the end even states that he’s never doing drugs again. On the flip side, individuals such as the President, who believes in the war against harmful drugs, are portrayed as heartless jerks who are happy to let millions of Americans die from the poisonous drug because they’re all “criminal druggies.”
Positively, there’s no attack on Christianity in this movie, like there was in the first. Eggsy tries hard to stay committed to Hanna, and by the end he learns that that means getting married. Sacrifice is also extolled, and some of the American Statesman characters make positive references to God.
That said, the movie is still excessive due to extreme and sometimes disgusting violence, brief nudity, lots of strong foul language, and some vengeful killing by the main hero.
(BB, C, P, PaPa, PC, Acap, Cap, C, LLL, VVV, S, NN, AA, DD, MM) Strong moral worldview with light Christian, redemptive, patriotic elements extolling sacrifice, honor, commitment, marriage, decency, duty, and patriotic service to Britain and America and its people, including Christian statements such as “Thank the sweet Lord” and “God help us all,” with a wedding in a church, mitigated by strong immoral pagan elements concerning vengeful murder and some politically correct anti-capitalist statements but mitigated by the fact that the heroic organizations are financed by their private corporation; at least 85 obscenities (including 55 f-words), five strong profanities, and some obscene gestures; very extreme violence with intense fights, shooting, men are stabbed, men shot point blank, men shoved into meat grinders, men impaled, men ripped apart, men cut in half, men are blown up by explosions and land mines, and poison causes people’s eyes to explode and blood come out; main character needs to woo a target and implant a tiny mic into her body through intercourse, but because he’s in a relationship, he doesn’t want to cheat on his girlfriend, so instead he quickly plants it with his finger, but in a bizarre shot the camera follows the micro-devise through the woman’s underwear and into her vaginal canal; woman attempts to lure a man by wearing revealing lingerie, plus upper male nudity; moderate alcohol consumption and some drunkenness; no smoking but light depicted drug use, and, much of the plot revolves around drugs; and, a bad guy is forced to eat a burger that is made out of body of a henchman he just killed, villain blackmails the United States, vengeance, and greed.
KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE is a sequel that ramps up ridiculous action and plot elements about the Kingsman, the elite British spy agency posing as a tailor shop. Poppy, a villainous drug lord, poisons her drugs to hold her customers hostage so that the American President will legalize her product and legitimize her company. She also assassinates nearly all of the Kingsman’s employees. This leads the young Kingsman spy Eggsy to go to America to work with the Kingsman’s sister organization, called the Statesman.
KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE is purposefully colorful, outlandish and highly exaggerated. Sometimes the style works, but it doesn’t make up for a boring story. Unlike the first movie, THE GOLDEN CIRCLE has some positive Christian, redemptive elements. Eggsy tries hard to stay committed to his girlfriend and even learns he should marry her. Sacrifice is extolled, and some of the American Statesman characters make positive references to God. That said, KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE is still inappropriate due to extreme and sometimes disgusting violence, brief nudity, lots of strong foul language, and vengeful killing by the main hero.