This sequel to the irreverent action-comedy antidote to the solemn superhero genre will be best remembered for guest star Jim Carrey refusing promotion duties because Kick-Ass 2 was too violent in the wake of the Sandy Hook school shootings.
Carrey would have been equally justified in distancing himself from Kick-Ass 2 for it being a terrible movie.
Why the high level of violence came as a shock is not clear, when punches, kicks, crunches, stabbings and shootings saturate every frame of this comic book follow-up.
The original breath of fresh air has become stale as we find costumed high-school hero Kick-Ass joining a band of masked do-gooders led by a barely recognisable Carrey.
Meanwhile, former partner in crime-fighting Hit Girl (Moretz) faces a more terrifying opponent than street thugs: fitting in at high school, with all the associated cliches.
What reunites them is the return of the dastardly Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) and his own league of evil costumed villains who threaten to steal the show.
However, in Kick-Ass 2, the laughs are supposed to come from playground swear words and bodily functions, which may appeal to undemanding teenage boys but will leave everyone else cold. – Queenstown Times
Kick-Ass 2 (R16)
Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Anna Karenina), Chloe Grace Moretz (Dark Shadows), Morris Chestnut (Identity Thief).
Director: Jeff Wadlow (Never Back Down).
Screening: Reading Cinemas Queenstown – visit www.readingcinemas.co.nz for times.
Rating: One star (out of five)