Amph Kick-Ass & Kick-Ass 2

Discussion in 'Community' started by The2ndQuest, Jun 23, 2008.

  1. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Referencing the trope is referencing the trope. No way around it. Add the sexual language and its an open and shut case. Again, there's broad agreement with this among the better critical reviews. I could understand if I were having this discussion with junior high school students. They wouldn't understand the broader cultural context.
  2. Cobranaconda Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2004
    star 7
    Meh, if they were trying to sexualise her they failed. That uniform was ugly :p
  3. Juan-King Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 24, 2004
    star 2
    can't see it myself , personally I don't automatically equate school uniforms with sex .
    Just 'cos she's wearing a school uniform doesn't make her Lolita !
    in the movie she exploits the school uniform as an image of innocence (it works ) but hey - if you see sex then I don't know what to tell ya .



    it's not a satire .
  4. Darth-Lando Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    Maybe it's because I went to Catholic school for twelve years but when I see a schoolgirl outfit my mind does not immediately think of sex. Saying it's a porn trope means nothing. There are also porn tropes regarding pizza delivery boys but that doesn't mean every time someone orders a pizza in a movie that's what they are referencing. I think this is just a case of people seeing something that just isn't there.

    The only time, in the entire movie, that they come even remotely close to sexualizing her is when one of the friends says "I think I'm in love". And even that is acknowledged and shot down by the very next line when the other friend says "Dude, she's like twelve!"
  5. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Maybe it's because I went to Catholic school for twelve years but when I see a schoolgirl outfit my mind does not immediately think of sex. Saying it's a porn trope means nothing. There are also porn tropes regarding pizza delivery boys but that doesn't mean every time someone orders a pizza in a movie that's what they are referencing. I think this is just a case of people seeing something that just isn't there.

    Sure, it's possible to make movies with girls in school uniforms that don't reference the Lolita trope, for example, in a movie that takes place in a school where everyone wears a uniform. It's not possible in a movie where the girl is using scatological/sexual slang, is in scenes that reference Tarantino movies and Leon, and the only time she isn't wearing the schoolgirl outfit or schoolgirl-based crimefighting outfit is at home or when she actually is in school.

    I'm not saying Kick-Ass is a bad movie. I enjoyed it. But it lacks the moral center that pulls a movie like Leon back from the brink of the depravity of its violence and sexual subtext. And a satire without a strong moral center is not a great satire.

    If it isn't intended to be satirical, then it's even more shallow and morally hollow than I gave it credit for being.

  6. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    It's not referencing the trope just because the uniform is used- at no point does she present herself in a sexualized manner, nor does anyone respond to her in a sexualized manner- with or without the uniform.

    She uses the schoolgirl uniform to make herself seem like the innocent, lost little girl to lower the guard of the security to get her access to the lobby. At no point is she acting, or shot, suggestively in that sequence, and none of the mobsters even react to her in a sexualized manner (they're not going "Hey, honey" or grinning suggestively, they're either going "Help the kid, what's wrong with you? Have some decency." or reacting in a silent "don't trust her" paranoia type way).

    You'll note she changes back to her costume the moment she's done in the lobby- it was a way in through duped innocence, not a way in by being alluring or suggestive.

    It's just plain not in the movie at all.

    And the foul language, again, changes nothing- because it's also not sexual in nature, delivery or context (nor is it out of place for a kid her age to know such words).
  7. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    You're the one referencing it as a sex trope. When I saw her in a schoolgirl outfit I did not think it sexual.
  8. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    A girl wearing a superhero costume that incorporates the schoolgirl trope refers first to the female reproductive organ, and then, soon after, to the male organ. How is that not inherently sexual in nature? "in the form of a giant ...." isn't maybe definitionally an erect "...." but that's the image it's going to evoke.

    To be fair, I don't think sexualizing a prepubescent is as morally awful as turning her into a ninja assassin. Big Daddy would have been taking the moral high road if he had merely pimped her out as an underage prostitute.



  9. Reynar_Tedros Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 3, 2006
    star 6
    Can we let this post be the end of this ridiculous topic? It's the most correct thing I've heard all week, and I'm disappointed to see so many people letting something so trivial get in the way of a pretty awesome movie.
  10. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    It's not sexual in nature- it's not suggestive, as the context/implication/intent was as a sarcastic insult to Kick-Ass in a "Oh, yeah, cause we obviously have a batsignal, ****head.".

    There are a dozen different profane slang words for reproductive organs that can be used as insults without ever having any kind of sexual context. The ones in the film are probably among the dullest of that selection (even if they utilize two of the more harsher words).

    She's basically just doing a Clint Eastwood impression the whole time.

    [image=http://tengossip.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/hit-girl-kick-ass-poster.jpg]

    Ok, taking a closer look at her costume, the skirt does kinda look like a dark schoolgirl uniform's skirt- but the rest is just your typical superhero costume, and most woman/girl heroines tend to have skirts in their costume, so it strikes me as simply a part of that "Costume has to show the girl in Hit Girl" concept (or, perhaps, to visually covey the opposite of what is expected of an 11 year old girl (dark, violent, ninja, etc)- which is pretty much the point of Hit Girl), especially since the design/pattern/coloration is so subtle and never focused on or played off of as suggestive in the film.

    I mean, seriously, besides the noted reaction of the one friend (whose context is made clear in the film), there's not one character who ever treats or reacts to Hit Girl in a suggestive manner (they're all either scared, bewildered, or pissed off at her) or one scene where she acts suggestively (she's either being a sarcastic Eastwood badass/smartass, luring enemies into a false sense of security through a false appearance of innocence, or being the joyful/mourning daughter).


    In other news:

    20-min of deleted scenes possibly to be added back into DVD extended cut

    If there's one problem with director Matthew Vaughn's action-packed adaptation of "Kick-Ass," it's that there's just too much ass to kick. The filmmaker found this out the hard way when he had to cut nearly 20 minutes of footage from the final version of the film.

    "There is about 18 minutes of [deleted] footage, which is really good stuff," the director told MTV News. "If the film is a hit, I'll do an extended cut."

    According to Vaughn, the deleted 18 minutes weren't necessarily problematic, but he worried about over-stuffing the "Kick-Ass" experience.

    "The problem about this movie is that I was trying to make it snappy and short, because I think a lot of movies have become way too long," he explained. "I had a cut that was 20 minutes longer and I went, 'You know, this is just indulgent. Let's do a film that's fresh and energetic, and if people want to have more, then I'll put more in.'"

    As for what was left on the cutting room floor, Vaughn revealed that "three Hit-Girl and Big Daddy scenes" didn't make it into the final version of the film.

    "It was really tough to get rid of them because they're so popular," Vaughn confessed, adding that another deleted scene involved "the funniest groupie sex scene with Red Mist and Kick-Ass basically behaving like Mötley Crüe with two girls ? it was really funny to film and to watch but, again, it wasn't right for the pacing of the film."
  11. JMJacenSolo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2006
    star 4
    I lol'd when I drove by the theatre today and "Kick A" was on the marquee.
  12. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
  13. Asterix_of_Gaul Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2007
    star 5
    People complaining about Hit-Girl, I'm willing to bet, have not seen The Bad Seed.
  14. SHAD0W-JEDI Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 20, 2002
    star 3

    Saw the movie tonight, and loved it. SPOILERS ahead, so please don't read on if you want to stay UNspoiled.

    Should say that while I am a fan of comic books/superheroes in general, I never read the comics this was based on, so I took what was on screen at face value. I should also say that I was one of those who was really troubled when I saw previews that included the scene of "Big Daddy" and his daughter talking in the bowling alley, and she cut loose with some...er... extremely salty language. To clarify - it wasn't her CHARACTER that bothered me in that clip, it was the idea of some parent out there deciding this was a great part for their daughter. It "broke the plane" for me, took me out of the suspension of disbelief, made me think about some real, actual young girl having her parents say "Sure sweetie, this would be way cool!".

    But having seen the movie... have to admit, I really enjoyed it.

    It was clever and fun. And yes, over the top. It was manipulative in the way a LOT of genre movies are - it worked the audience in an admittedly heavy handed way to get you wanting to see the "bad guys" get it good, but... for me, it worked. Big Daddy and Hit Girl were great, and I do NOT feel that Hit Girl was sexualized (and trust me... I was LOOKING for that, based on what I had heard going in, and would have been inclined to come down on this movie BIG TIME had they gone that way). Was it rough seeing her take some shots towards the end? Definitely. And it SHOULD be. But overall? A clever, fun, unique take on the superhero genre.

    Shadow

  15. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    From what I've read, they took an appropriate amount of caution in casting Hit Girl. Her parents read the script ahead of her, obviously, and she apparently has several brothers, so she said it's nothing she hadn't heard before. She also went on to say she doesn't talk like that in real life and isn't inclined to- she'd be severely punished if she used some of the language she uses in the film.
  16. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
  17. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    I don't want to belabor the point about Hit Girl as an overt reference to a sexual trope, since so many disagree. The movie is morally hollow and repugnant in so many other ways I don't want that to be a distraction.

    First, let me say a movie is not required to have a moral message. It's not required to be a parable or cautionary tale or fable or teaching tool of any kind. If it doesn't aspire to any of those things, which is of course fine, it will have a hard time succeeding without characters we can empathize with, appreciate and root for.

    Kick-Ass doesn't have any. I hate to be doing this, because Kick-Ass really isn't an interesting enough movie to deserve all the attention it's getting.

    Voynar's reference to Taxi Driver only highlights the difference between a movie with a powerful theme and one without. Taxi Driver isn't glorifying child prostitution - Foster is seen as a victim too young and immersed in her crappy environment even to understand exactly how and why she's being victimized.

    Hit Girl is as much a victim - exploited by a depraved an insane father as an instrument of revenge, an involuntary agent of an immoral adult's perverse will. But not only does she not see herself as a victim (why should she, she's only 11?) but the movie doesn't recognize it either. It glorifies the violence as integral to everything that is entertaining about the movie. I see that as a serious moral failing.

    But Hit Girl is the only tragic figure in Kick-Ass, the one victim in a movie that, like a small child, doesn't acknowledge or seem to understand the moral implications of its own narrative.

    Aside from Hit Girl, everyone else is a loser. Kick-Ass himself gets into the business as a two pronged strategy to get laid (the other being lying to the object of his affection about his sexual orientation - good one!). As soon as achieves this important goal, he immediately loses interest in vigilante street brawling, returning only to meekly follow an 11 year old into combat and so avenge an attempt on his own life. I know this is supposed to be his moment of redemption, but it really falls flat, given the circumstances and events that lead up to it. Rarely have I disliked a movie's narrator and protagonist so much.

    A movie with characters motivated by some kind of nobility of purpose is a workable substitute for one with real subtext or thematic interest. Instead, Kick-Ass offers up one interesting damaged goods character who is captivating merely because she is such a one-girl circus freak show.



  18. Radical_Edward Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 2, 2002
    star 3
    All I get out of this is "Whine, whine, whine; it doesn't conform to my opinion of social values; since it's not part of my limited worldview, it is therefore bad."

    Your complaints are rather petty, and have taste of an Ebert-like childishness.

    Criticism of this film seems to fall into only two categories: Reviews from those that are self-indulgent enough to judge movies by personal standards of social values (who see it as a uniformly bad film) and those that chose to judge movies based upon their cinematic quality and execution (who see it as a very good film).

    In effect it's like two restaurant critics reviewing the same establishment: One gives it a good review for the high quality of its food and service; the other gives it a poor review because the color of the walls reminds them of their grumpy second-grade teacher's classroom.
  19. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    I'm pretty flexible on social values, but I'm wondering whose values this movie does represent that I'm forgetting about.

    And in terms of cinematic quality, Moretz's acting is pretty much the only thing about Kick-Ass that is worthwhile. I can see people wanting to see the movie to gape at that particular freak show, but the rest of the film is all tired cliches, worn out memes, trite ideas about teen angst and sexuality, suggesting I think convincingly that the movie doesn't have the slightest bit of respect for its audience.

    If I could think of a similar kind of movie that really succeeds where Kick-Ass fails it would be Zombieland. Also fairly shallow, without much of a message or purpose beyond entertaining people with lots of gory violence and black humor, it features a gun toting young girl. And it has a moral compass. It fills out its narrative with sympathetic characters who have heart and purpose.
  20. Asterix_of_Gaul Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2007
    star 5
    This film is no more morally reprehensible than most Tarantino films in my opinion (see Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, Death Proof). People are just freaked out because it involves a young girl instead of a young woman. A young girl being a cold, heartless, killing machine is not new. She and Kick-Ass don't seem to hesitate to be violent--kill enough bad guys, and win the game. However, the film never seems to take itself too seriously, which makes for an arguably funny film based around a very cynical outlook on people trying to play the role of a "hero." I felt like the ending was intentionally over-the-top and not intended to encourage anything. Actually, I think the film seems to aim for going from semi-normal to extremely over-the-top i.e. if a normal person did this, it would suck, but this is a movie, so...here's a jetpack.
  21. Yodaminch Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 6, 2002
    star 6
    1) Read the comic and you'll see where people such as Quest and myself have issues with the creative liberties the movie took in key areas.

    2) You're overlooking several things. Here are the motivations for the characters in the comic vs. the movie


    Kick-Ass: Fed up with being a victim of crime and wondering why no one helps others essentially. Wonders why no one has ever tried to be a superhero to right these wrongs. His idea of crime fighting isn't the mob. It's the muggers. And being a hero is more like getting Mr. Bitey and helping people with manageable problems. As awed as he was by Big Daddy and Hit-Girl, he wanted no part in their war. In the comic: Big Daddy essentially threatens to out Kick-Ass if he doesn't help them. Also, getting the girl was never really a part of the plan. But his ego did get a healthy boost to make him think he was better than he was. The primary goal is evident in his video encounter: While everyone else stands and gawks, he takes action to defend the weak. While he may have been inspired by Spider-Man and the other heroes, he wasn't looking to take on large villians. He was happy to leave that to the cops. It was the small things for him. The myspace thing was again ego resulting from his early success.

    Big Daddy: Comic: Fantasy role-playing best describes him. He was a comic nerd who, like Kick-Ass, wanted to become a superhero. And he was bored with his life as an accountant So, he kidnapped his daughter from his wife and brainwashed her with a story that he'd
  22. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    Roger Ebert's stance on the movie highly reminds me of his "Fight Club" review -- not that this movie should be compared with "Fight Club" or anything.

    Actually I thought the movie was rather satiric; the thing is about most movies on satire is that the satire, almost by necessity, is dropped by the halfway point or 2/3s into the movie. Becuase if you continue the satire then your hero gets tarnished and for a large amount of your audience, that gets less entertaining.

    I don't think Hit-Girl was sexualized in the way we generally think of sexualization. I don't think the picture was trying to get it's audience to visualize *ahem* scenarios. I do think there was something going on though, in a sort of idealization of the girl. Not so much that what the girl was going through was good, but that the fact that such a person existed was a 'good thing' if you get my meaning.

    Hit-Girl is the ultimate comic-boy reader's dream -- and the movie sort of touches on that with a short comment of one minor character's reaction. But I don't think it's classified so much as sexualization like you'd get from anywhere as extreme as the pages of Playboy to as brief as a scene from the Sopranos at Ton'y nudi-bar. I think this was a form of a sort of virgin-worship. A girl who was dangerous but in the way that's actually NOT THREATENING to young boys. Or heck, maybe even men in general. Yeah, she can slit a throat without a second thought but you're a good person so she'd never slit YOUR THROAT, right? And she's certainly never going to expose however inadequate you may or may not be.

    It's almost like the equivalent of girls perferring "safe boys", which I don't think is sexual at its root either. The appeal to the character is minimal risk.

    Myself, I couldn't get over thinking what was going on in the reality of the film with her was the equivalent of the Hitler Youth. It just so happened that the victims deserved what they got, I guess. The message though, would have been more relevant 20 years ago when the urban crime rates around 1989 were climbing and climbing with no end in sight. Today I'm not sure anyone actually beleives -- and if they do, they shouldn't -- that we're programming the youth of today into video-game killers.
  23. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    That's probably reading more into Hit Girl than is necessary- I think, in the film, she was meant to be portrayed as a kid who is really a grown-up- at least while she's in costume. You could recast her with a 40 year old and the performance and dialogue wouldn't have to change. She's shown as competent and intelligent, moreso than the adults around her (save Big Daddy).

    When she's out of costume is the only time she acts like a kid/let's child tendencies to the surface (ice cream, etc). But even then, it's just more of a "daddy's girl" scenario.
  24. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    That's probably reading more into Hit Girl than is necessary

    I meant more of this as the effect rather than the intention.
  25. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    I was reminded of Ebert's Fight Club review as well.

    yodaminch, the differences between the comic and movie you describe suggest there was an opportunity there to make a much harsher, more challenging and interesting film, and that was definitely the road not taken.