Channing Tatum (left) and Halle Berry star in Twentieth Century Fox’s “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” (Photo Credit: Giles Keyte/Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation).
Outshining its Predecessor
Who said that sequels never outshine the original?
Well, whoever started that stereotype obviously never saw “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” because the sequel helped the “Kingsman” franchise acquire a new fan when the original could not.
“Kingsman: The Golden Circle” does not sway too far from the outlandish quirkiness and charm of the original, but benefits from more clever dialogue and an A-list cast from Academy Award winners to Netflix stars.
In “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” Harry (Colin Firth) rescues his colleague’s son Eggsy (Taron Egerton) from a tumultuous life and recruits him for the secret spy agency known as the Kingsman.
In the original, Eggsy transforms from someone rough around the edges to a man of class and sophistication.
Eggsy’s transformation seems complete in “Kingsman: The Golden Circle.”
In the sequel, Eggsy’s new life has helped him snag a literal princess for a girlfriend, Princess Tilde (Hanna Alstrom).
Unfortunately, Eggsy’s problem is that he still has not learned to separate his old common life from his new regal life.
When Princess Tilde takes Eggsy to meet the king and queen for the first time, he needs his old friends from the neighborhood to housesit and look out for his beloved canine.
But when his friend stumbles upon his office loaded with Kingsman gear, some of his enemies are able to locate Eggsy’s house and the houses of the rest of the Kingsman.
Poppy (Julianne Moore) and her drug cartel bomb all of the Kingsman and the only two left standing are Eggsy and Merlin (Mark Strong).
Not knowing how to regroup, the surviving Kingsman stumble upon allies that they did not know existed in Kentucky called the Statesman.
The two spy organizations discover that they have a common enemy in Poppy, who wants to infect the drug users of the world, so that she can coerce the president of the United States into legalizing drugs so she can rake in a fortune and emerge from the shadows of a life of organized crime.
Poppy’s message to the president is to save lives and legalize.
While the original “Kingsman” might have seemed a bit juvenile with its over the top shenanigans, “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” is a bit more refined and a lot more charming than its predecessor.
Eggsy is more refined.
Halle Berry is Halle Berry and that is good enough for any film, even for the Razzie Award winning mistake “Catwoman.”
Channing Tatum is convincing as a country bumpkin cowboy with a secret addiction.
And Pedro Pascal continues his law enforcement pursuit this time in a much more comical way than in the Netflix series “Narcos.”
Berry, Tatum and Pascal all play members of the Statesman spy organization.
Instead of using tailoring as a front like their European counterparts, the Statesman use booze as the cover for their activities of espionage.
However, what’s really funny about the Statesman is that they all take on a moniker of beverages as their name code name.
Berry is known as Ginger Ale.
Tatum is known as Tequila.
And Pascal is the infamous Whiskey.
Their leader is Champagne or Champ, played by the great Jeff Bridges.
Despite all of that A-list acting talent, pop icon Elton John steals the show as an intoxicated and belligerent version of himself.
Please bring John back if there is another installment of the “Kingsman” franchise.
The film also gets an assist from music like “Let’s Go Crazy” by Prince and the Revolution to the sounds of the Glastonbury Music Festival.
“Kingsman: The Golden Circle” even gets the Fox News Channel to participate in its tomfoolery.
The film might have detractors because of its outlandish storyline and light acting performances, but that is also why the film is such a great success.
Its success will overshadow its predecessor and convert new fans to the franchise.