Kung Fury Review (2015) : Don’t Hassle the Hoff

A few days ago while I was bored at the office, I had a chat with a friend about absurd movies. He told me all about Kung Fury. The latter, as he described, was a 30-minute flick that pays homage to all things 80s. With my interest piqued, I googled the film and saw its poster. What greeted me was the following low-budget hack job.

I didn’t know what to think of the movie. It had a dinosaur, Thor, a triceratops humanoid, and Hitler?! How will everything fit the 30-minute screen time?

One night I had some free time and decided to watch a film. I had Blue is the Warmest Color all set up, but saw its 3-hour duration and nope’d out of it.

I’ll watch it some other time, I thought. I was looking for something quite short because recently I’ve been having attention deficiency problems. I then thought of Kung Fury and was elated to see that the whole film was up on YouTube:

Well, here are my thoughts on the film.

At its core, Kung Fury is a buddy-cop drama with elements of Asian action and sci-fi. David Sandberg stars as the titular Kung Fury (yes, that’s his actual name), a police officer who was hit by lightning and bit by a cobra, which granted him master kung-fu skills. With a time-travelling Hitler, a.k.a. Kung Fuhrer, who is another kung-fu master in this alternative universe, wreaking havoc in the present, Kung Fury decides to go back in time to Nazi Germany to kill Hitler once and for all.

There is one word to describe Kung Fury: absurd. The plot, it seemed to me, was anything goes and very surreal. And I absolutely loved it. There was very little filler in the movie, and for someone with attention deficiency problems (like me in recent times), Kung Fury was perfect. It’s not going to win Best Picture at The Oscars or Cannes, but it’s solid entertainment all the way through.

In terms of cinematography, the film is shot with a very strong chromatic aberration effect which gives it a distinctively retro feel. I’d say it works for me but sometimes the effect is so strong that it’s distracting. One funny element of the film is that the dialog is voiced over. At some points the film also resembles 2D fighting games like Mortal Kombat, which elated the gamer in me.

If I were to nitpick, I’d probably fault how ‘weak’ Hitler is in the movie. The heroes were basically overpowered, and Hitler just seemed like a total pushover. Entertaining, but a total pushover. His ‘death’ was also just a very big cop-out, but at least it leaves room for a sequel (which is happening, yey).

At each step of the way, Kung Fury is entertaining. The film was obviously made for this purpose alone, and it’s very hard to criticize a movie when it doesn’t take itself too seriously. What I will say is basically just watch the movie. It’s only 30 minutes, and there’s a high probability that you will like it… unless you’re a rock.

Rating :