Visually Dazzling, Fascinatingly Strange!
Visually dazzling, fascinatingly strange, oddly sweet and laugh-out-loud funny, "Kung Fu Hustle" is truly something special. How special? This Hong Kong chop-sockey comedy features amazing special effects; cartoonishly frantic fight scenes; a dance number performed by tuxedoed gang members wielding hand axes; a pair of blind musician-assassins who magically conjure up flying swords and skull-faced demons; the most abusively loud landlady in history; a toad-man master killer; a mute and sweetly adorable ice-cream vendor; an all-powerful butt-kicking savior from the skies...and more!
Director/producer/writer Stephen Chow stars as Sing, a lovable-loser con artist pretending to represent the murderously evil Axe Gang. After his attempted shakedown of Pig Sty Alley goes hilariously wrong, he tries to join for real. One of his first assignments is to spring the fastest and most dangerously lethal martial-arts master alive from prison, which leads to some positively epic fists-of-fury faceoffs.
If you're thinking that "Kung Fu Hustle" sounds like cold Quentin Tarantino camp, think again. This isn't some soulless, post-modern pastiche, full of forced irony and lamebrained pop-culture references designed to make girlfriendless nerds chuckle in mirthless appreciation. "Kung Fu Hustle" is more like a weird cross between screwball slapstick comedy and surrealistic anime fantasy, with affectionate nods along the way to Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and "The Matrix." Who says homages can't have heart?
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Unmissable Kung Fu, Authentic Kung Fu, Fantastic Kung F
Being a chow fan myself, I must say this is by far the best work he's done. I was absolutely captivated and immediately at home in this very foreign place. This film is so strangely retro and yet tangible. Stephen Chow's name has been around the Chinese cinema for more than twenty years. His special style of dry humor is not only known but also recognized by Chinese viewers as his trademark and uniqueness. It's only until recently with the release of Shaolin soccer did people around the world started to take notice of this Asian pop icon. But when we thought it couldn't get any better, he surprised us with this masterpiece, Kung Fu Hustle. I have never laughed so hard, yet come away feeling as if I had been uplifted.
The effects are fierce, and yet organic. The characters are strong, vivid and effective. The imagery and magic of the story and scenery and amazing overwhelmingly inspired soundtrack blend. It's like this film picks you up and never puts you down, doesn't miss a beat, and never spends a fraction of a second too long in any one spot.
Viewers will find themselves drawn into the fantasy world of Kung Fu with funny, fascinating characters that blow people's mind away. References to Forrest Gump, The Matrix, Silence of the Lambs, traditional Chinese Woosha novels can be found in many scenes. I also find myself laughing so hard in several parts. Most of the jokes are easy to understand for they are usually short phrases or body movements. This allows general audiences around the world to get pass the cultural or language barrier and enjoy the atmosphere it's creating. The action scenes are also visually stunning according to the design by famous action designer Yuen Ho Ping (Responsible for Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and The Matrix trilogy). But being a Kung Fu watcher, I personally thought it would've been even more superior with less CGI.
Overall I give it 5 stars. It's probably the most entertaining Chinese film to date. This one will sure save a spot for Steven Chow in the history of Asian cinema.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Nothing like it!
I've seen this in the theaters once before but it wasn't until I watched it on DVD a second time that I realized at how great this movie truly is. There is no other movie out there that can combine comedy and action so damn well, there just isn't. I was amazed at how much slap-stick comedy could be found in an action Kung Fu film (although Jackie Chan's films do it well, but in a different way). At one point you'll be laughing because it's so funny and rediculous and then the next you'll just tense up with excitement watching all that cool choreographed Kung Fu. You'd think with all the Loony Toon type shtick going on it would ruin it's chances of being taken seriously, not so. I just love the way this film changes gears and never loses pace.
While watching this I was left with such nostalgia for my past favorite Kung Fu films. Even the way this was shot, it almost seemed like I was just sitting back and enjoying an age ol' classic. Than at the same time I'm thrown off kilt by the slap-stick humor and fantastic special effects, and as we all know this is the perfect recipe for keeping people interested...atleast when it's done right. And it was. Remember what I said about "changing gears"? Yeah, it does it very well. One moment it's a spoof and the next it's an intense fight scene. It's almost as if the funny stuff was to give you a breather from the action.
Now if you know my writing, you'll first notice I gave KFH a 5/5, a first for me here at eBay. That's not to say this is the best movie of all time, but it's definitely the best movie of it's kind. As funny as this movie can be, it makes Couching Tiger Hidden Dragon look like the real joke when it comes to choreography. This one just hit the nail on the head and gave us Kung Fu fans something to be proud of. Kung Fu Hustle is like Disney World, you'll never see everything your first time through. I've seen this a dozen times and always pick up on something new. This review just doesn't do it justice alone, go see it for yourself!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Looney Toons meets Kung-fu
This has got to be one of the funniest Kung-fu parodies that I have seen in a long time. Shaolin Soccer was good but this movie has scenes that had me crying with laughter. The special affects are done is such a way that you get the feeling that you are watching an episode of Bugs Bunny, but it's all real live action. There are no cartoon scenes in the movie, it's all real life people with some computer graphic manipulations which gives this movie it's very unique points. If you are looking for a good laugh and a martial arts film I recommend this one. I'm pretty sure that at one point in the movie you'll be laughing hard.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Kung Fu Hustle
Kung Fu Hustle is definately a movie for guys. Why the stereotype you might ask? Watch it with your wife or girlfriend and you'll see why (though their is a romantic sub-plot). The action scenes are over the top (almost animated), yet if you let yourself be drawn into them they are highly entertaining. From high flying classic karate kicks, to a cigarette smoking housewife with super-lungs; the characters are common people with super hero powers. Another appealing aspect of the movie is the humor.
Read along with the sub-titles and you will laugh. Throughout each scene, the mishaps and mayhem the main character and his side-kick get themselves into are loaded with side bar comedy.
Overall Kung Fu Hustle is worth your time and money from a purely entertainment standpoint. The characters are common everyday people who live common lives yet surprise you as they display their hidden talents. This movie is fun to watch and a break from those super hero movies that are all to common (see Spiderman and Batman). Like Superman these charcters disguise themselves as one of us, unlike Superman they dont have a costum they change into.
The only drawback to this movie is the subtitles, (unless you can speak the language of the movie:I think it is Mandarin Chinese), the subtitles are not much to put up with to enjoy the movie.
P.S. I have watched the movie a few times and I even got my wife to watch it once! She actually liked it. I think you will too.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.