What made ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ a fun movie were not just its action sequences or sense of humor, but its elements of both surprise and danger. Almost every moment kept you on your toes – making you wait for something to happen – only to provide a twist at each and every turn. Here, in ‘The Golden Circle’, every bit of surprise and sense of humor is traded in for a gleefully out-of-place story-line involving Julianne Moore playing a drug kingpin named Poppy, living in a hideout drenched in 50’s nostalgia, while grinding unsuspecting victims up as burgers as if she were Mrs. Lovett in ‘Sweeney Todd’, only the opposite. Cheerful and bubbly, but not actually creepy enough to pass as a good villain. Let’s take a look at Samuel L. Jackson’s Valentine from ‘The Secret Service’. He was a ridiculous and clichéd spy movie villain with a cliched agenda, but one with an appeal to make him entertaining. I must mention that ‘The Secret Service’ was an action-comedy, which added to the fun.
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Illumination Entertainment has failed this year with their box-office hit, yet shameful film, ‘The Secret Life of Pets’. With ‘Sing’, it looks like they may still have some of that charm that has made ‘Despicable Me’, ‘Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax’, and ‘Minions’ animated masterpieces; except the only problem is unlike those films, ‘Sing’ is a clunky mess that hasn’t figured out a way to set up what could be lovable characters that could instantly become action figures and toys to fill up the rooms of children everywhere. (It’s possible this movie is succeeding at the box-office based on Christmas returns, so toys are sure to happen.) If ‘Zootopia’ meshed with the likes of ‘America’s Got Talent’, and ‘American Idol’, we would have ‘Sing’. Despite the title, ‘Sing’ is less of a musical, and more of a comedy in the style of ‘Noises Off!’ and ‘Footlight Frenzy’, wherein everything on stage that could go wrong does, and it’s up to the director/manager/host to keep everything together while the cast/variety of talent deals with problems of their own.
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