Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman seem like a match made in heaven. From reviving the X-Men franchise with First Class to riffing on fantastical romance with the brilliant Stardust, the pair have shown serious aptitude for creating consistently enjoyable cinema experiences.
Arguably the crème de la crème of their filmography, though, is Kick-Ass; a sharp-witted, perfectly cast and wonderfully violent adaptation of Mark Millar’s celebrated graphic novel. More than any other of Vaughn and Goldman’s projects, Kick-Ass was the one that benefitted most from their endless commitment to self-referential frivolity.
Their latest release, Kingsman: The Secret Service, is to the spy genre what Kick-Ass was to the realm of comic book superheroes. Once again Millar’s source material has provided Vaughn and Goldman with plenty of licence to craft something gleefully irrerevant and stylish, with action that hits hard and gags that hit even harder.