- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A subversive tribute to the James Bond genre brought to cinematic life by director Matthew Vaughn (“X-Men: First Class”) gave movie audiences a wild ride earlier this year.

The recent debut of Kingsman: The Secret Service (20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, Rated R, $39.99) on Blu-ray should further thrill fans looking to carefully appreciate Mr. Vaughn’s extremely violent, stylish and often mind-boggling action scenes throughout the 129-minute epic.

The story, adapted from the comic book series “Secret Service,” chronicles a new recruit Gary Unwin’s (played by newcomer Taron Egerton) entrance into the super-secret spy program to potentially become one of Britain’s covert agents and part of Kingsman.

The organization’s work gets complicated when a madman, played to scene-munching delight by Samuel L. Jackson, hopes to permanently change the world by offering free mobile Internet access, and that’s not all.

A pair of Academy-Award winners — Michael Caine and Colin Firth — help fuel the over-the-top fun while Gazelle, a lethal bodyguard/assassin to the bad guy, steals the show during every one of her attacks.

The digital transfer impressively brings the practical and computer-generated chaos to home theater screens in a format highlighting such sequences as a perilous skydive, an insane car theft, numerous close-quarters fights and an unusual, outer-space balloon ride.

The action is backed up with a DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 sound mix to emphasize some great music, firefights and monstrous explosions.

Fans will appreciate the primary extra, a 90-minute look at the making of the film broken up into six-parts. It includes a deeper look at the brutal combat scenes, gadgets, the film’s comic book origins and casting.

It features interviews with Mr. Vaughn, Mr. Firth, Mr. Jackson, Mr. Caine and Mr. Egerton as well as very welcomed words from the comic book creators Mark Millar and legendary artist Dave Gibbons.

I especially enjoyed the great sequential-art panels drawn by Mr. Gibbons (“Watchmen”). Pop culture and “Star Wars”’ fans will also relish Mark Hamill’s (Professor Arnold in the movie) explanation on how he appeared in the comic as himself.

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