I enjoy spoof movies. Robin Hood: Men in Tights, Get Smart, and The Producers are excellent movies. So I enjoyed the ‘spoofing movies made about comic book heroes’ aspect of Kick-Ass.
However, that was about all I enjoyed in the movie. Yes, there were some quite funny moments when "normal" people tried to be heroic. And although many of Nicholas Cage’s lines bordered on campy, he was able to deliver them well enough to make them funny. Or maybe it was just his "redneck" moustache and psuedo-Batman outfit.
I was actually rather disturbed by the rest of the movie. I found it vulgar and graphically gory. But perhaps the most disturbing part was the character of Mindy Macready, aka Hit-Girl, the eleven-year-old daughter of Damon Macready (Nicholas Cage), aka Big Daddy. Hit-Girl sort of steals the show, and she is amusing and appealing. But she’s also vulgar, cold-blooded, and conscienceless. There is a scene where she kills off a number of heavily armed men, and the action looks almost like some video games. Could this not even further blur the line between fantasy "killing" and reality for some people?
A lot of the humor in Kick-Ass is juvenile, vulgar humor. It is funny, to an extent, but it’s the kind of humor that glories in someone else’s pain or humiliation. In other words, it is a type of narcissistic humor. Since I’m already disturbed by the amount of narcissism that seems to be accepted, even promoted, this movie shouldn’t have come as a surprise. But it still did, and not in a good way.
However, there was a sort of appeal to Aaron Johnson, who played Dave Lizewski, aka Kick-Ass. Lizewski honestly seemed to want to help others, even if he was misguided and untrained. Yet that’s not enough of a positive for me to be able to recommend this movie to others.