Courtney Howard is a LAFCA, CCA, OFCS and AWFJ member, as well as a Rotten Tomatometer-approved film critic. Her work has been published on Variety, She Knows and Awards Circuit.
Courtney Howard // Film Critic
Ever watch a trailer for a highly anticipated sequel and, after, reach the point of anger at the glaring mistakes it made? This was my reaction to the new trailer for director Matthew Vaughn’s KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE.
Now, before the MRA’s come at me with their sharpened knives (and unoriginal comments), they must hear me out. With exception of that tonally disjointed anal sex reference, I dug the hell outta KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE. Here’s my archived review as proof. I was completely on board with its brash, ballsy bombastic nature. I was totally down for its bonkers ultra-violence and suave bespoke suits and oxfords (not brogues). And I was – repeat WAS – so looking forward to a follow-up that would equal or surpass my feelings towards the original.
Then this trailer showed its ugly face and wrecked everything for me. Take a look and strap in to seethe too.
“Oh it’s not so bad, Courtney. You’re making it seem worse than it is.” – You, right now
Yeah, no. It’s bad.
Ranked from least offensive, to most egregious, here are the top five reasons why it’s not good:
5. The use of Frank Sinatra’s overplayed “My Way.” This Paul Anka-penned ballad is a song people revert to in order to excuse their shitty, selfish behavior. If it’s not enough that, according to the always-infallible Wikipedia, the song has been reported to cause numerous incidents of violence and homicide amongst drunkards in bars in the Philippines, it was sung at Trump’s inauguration. Do I need to say more? It’s also been used countless times prior in movies like HAPPY FEET, SING and GEORGE OF THE JUNGLE, to name a few. There needs to be a moratorium imposed on the use of this song in films – and that goes for trailers as well. I’m surprised those who cut this trailer didn’t at least use Sid Vicious’ punk-rock version as it thematically seems better suited (get it?!) to echo this comic book’s middle finger-flipping nature.
4. We can barely tell who the new stars are. The cuts are so quick and frenetic that there’s no time for the impact of Julianne Moore and Channing Tatum’s cameos to land. Yes, I know this makes me sound like an old lady, but if you want Firth’s older-skewing fans you’re pandering to with his inclusion to grab hold – let alone Moore’s non-millennial fanbase – you gotta show more.
3. There’s always time for female objectification. I know it’s a nod to the Bond influence, so please don’t @ me. However, it’s 2017 and women enjoy the franchise just as much as the men. Learn from your mistake. Don’t alienate us (or the male critics who even hated it). I only hope the filmmakers now know better, include a twist on it in their finished product and this underwear shot was exclusively marketing catnip.
2. They blow their wad early. Wouldn’t it have been nice if you didn’t know Harry Hart returns? And does knowing this honestly make you want to see this any more or less than when you thought he wouldn’t be back? Worse, is that it appears like it’s possible soap opera levels of raising that character from the dead. Perhaps it’s fitting and I should have expected the creators would pull an audacious, bombastic move like this. Nevertheless, the fact it’s in a trailer this early seems like they’ve given away their hand in a odious, desperate attempt to put Firth’s fan’s butts back in seats.
1. It’s generic when it should be electric. I sincerely hope it’s not an indicator of what’s to come in regards to the full film, but this follows a pretty standard path when it should be blazing new territory – especially given the fact this was cut by Fox, who consistently have cut some of the best trailers for their movies. I would’ve expected so much more from them and we’ve been shown A LOT less.
KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE opens on September 22.