Susan Granger's review of 'Kick-Ass 2'
Based on Mark Millar and John Romita Jr.'s comic book franchise, the "Kick-Ass" (2010) introduced Chloe Grace Moretz as feisty pre-teen Mindy Macready -- a.k.a. Hit-Girl, the cleverly cartoonish, leather-clad, purple-wigged epitome of female empowerment, spewing profanity and hurling lethal nunchuks.
Having lost her beloved father (Nicolas Cage), she's now living with NYPD detective/guardian Sgt. Marcus Williams (Morris Chestnut) and trying to cope with the Mean Girls and their cruel, competitive, cheerleading cliques at Millard Fillmore High School.
When dopey Dave Lizewski (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) -- a.k.a. Kick-Ass -- asks her to join him to form a dynamic duo of misfit teens, at first Mindy refuses, sneering: "I'm in the NFL. You play pee-wee." So Kick-Ass teams with a deluded, spandex-clad squad, called Justice Forever, that includes Dr. Gravity (Donald Faison), Mr. Radical (Matt Steinberg), Night Bitch (Lindy Booth), Battle Guy (Clark Duke) and an older couple -- Tommy's Dad (Steven Mackintosh) and Tommy's Mom (Monica Dolan) -- whom the police refused to help when their son disappeared. Led by crook-turned-born-again Christian, sadistic Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey), these vigilantes patrol the streets and help at food banks. The uber-villain is Red Mist, Chris D'Amico (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), in his late mother's bondage gear; his mob boss father was killed by Kick-Ass. He's hired brutal bodybuilder/former-KGB agent Katharina Dombrovski (Olga Kurkulina) -- a.k.a. Mother Russia -- with her manservant (John Leguizamo).
Using upper-corner panel captains, writer/director Jeff Wadlow recycles the same costume-wearing caricatures, same crime-fighting concept, adding even more misogynistic violence. Indeed, after last December's shooting tragedy in Newtown, Jim Carrey has publicly disavowed Wadlow's all-too-realistic depiction of brutal carnage.
Chloe Grace Moretz retorts: "If you believe and are affected by an action movie, you shouldn't see `Pocahontas' because you'll think you're a Disney princess ... if you see `Silence of the Lambs,' you'll think you're a serial killer ... If anything, these movies teach you what not to do."
On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Kick-Ass 2" is a flimsy 4, one of the stupidest sequels ever.