Kung Pow: Enter the Fist

The sole reason to see Kung Pow: Enter the Fist is to witness director Steve Oedekerk's seamless integration into the 1977 martial arts film Tiger and Crane Fist. Even though I knew the background behind the making of the film, I was surprised at how well the integration of the modern characters with the ones already fixed on celluloid was done.

Since I've not seen the original film, I've little idea what the plot is about. But in Kung Pow: Enter the Fist, a baby grows up to be The Chosen One who will rid the world of the evil Master Pain (Fei Lung). In doing so, he has to deal with his talking tongue, a one-breasted warrior, aliens from France, and a cow that would give Agent Smith in The Matrix a run for his money.

Kung Pow has some hilarious moments, including the baby rolling down the hill scene, the parody of The Matrix (which was more amusing in the trailers), and the incongruous name-change of the chief villain. This is an intentionally bad film that's so badly done that's it's genius (I'm assuming everything here was done on purpose). While it doesn't always generate humour, I kept marvelling at how Oedekerk twisted the context of the original film.

The movie has its place, especially coming at a time when martial arts films are in the vogue and are being taken way too seriously. There used to be a time when seeing a martial arts film involved dealing with bad dubbing and cheesy dialogue. These days, choreographing martial arts sequences is an art unto itself. Kung Pow: Enter the Fist reminds one that it wasn't always like that. The film is worth watching with a group of like-minded people who can laugh easily and appreciate parodies of parodies.

Movie ramblings || Ram Samudrala || me@ram.org