60 of 68 people found the following review helpful
on March 26, 2004
Kung Pow is one of the most hilarious movies I have ever seen. I've seen it more than 15 times, and I still laugh out loud every time I see it. This movie uses footage from an old 1970's Kung Fu movie and splices it together with some new footage made specially for this movie. This mishmash is then dubbed with cheesy sounding voices. It's a completely nonsensical and silly movie. You won't be able to resist laughing. Perhaps the most famous scene in this movie is when the hero happens to find a cow and this cow jumps up and challenges him to a fight. There is even milk shooting out like the bullets in The Matrix. If you have a craving for a goofy movie, this is my top recommendation. If you don't like goofy movies, then avoid it.
32 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on July 9, 2005
It's insane, and I'm not talking about the movie... yet. I've seen reviews where the person is straining their vocabulary to make their negative review of this movie sound credible and intelligent. Truthfully, reviews have to be intelligent if they are going to be negative, (the critic's reputation depends on it) but this movie doesn't deserve such spellchecking. It is stupid and wonderful and that's all that matters. Why? That's a question you almost don't need to ask. Either you like this movie or you don't, (but even if you don't you may eventually change your mind).
For the record, writer director Steve Oedekerk has taken an obscure Hong Kong movie from the 70s, digitally transferred it, and incorporated new footage of his own and redubbed the voices for some well needed comedic insanity. The result is something you don't need the IQ of say... a movie critic (*ahem*) to appreciate. Sometimes in life, things don't make sense nor do they need to. I imagine that movie critics would pee themselves if it were the case that every movie have a perfect plot and the same kind of "intellectual" comedy... but what's life without variety? The very fact that this movie, (that some even have the nerve to call the worst ever) has found a nice "cult" fanbase and is rated so highly in fan reviews is proof that movie critics sometimes collectively drop the ball on certain reviews to make themselves appear quite respectable... they should be thanking their lucky stars that they have a job at all.
The plot itself is very typical, (as far as the kung-fu master seeking revenge bit goes) although it isn't necessary to enjoy the movie. A special child is born to a small family in ancient China, and according to prophecy a child such as this (with a special "birthmark") is destined to stop the holy council from it's diabolical plan, (which we may not know until the second movie). Thusly, a gang of murderers lead by Master Pain goes to the family's home to murder them and wipe out the child... The Chosen One. Master Pain kills the family, however he finds out very quickly that killing Chosen, even as a baby, is not so easy. Chosen is very skilled in kung-fu, even in infancy (and here begins the insanity) and he fights Master Pain's attacks off quite skillfully. In a rage Master Pain barracades the child in the family's house and burns it to the ground.
Chosen jumps out and barely escapes the flames, only to crawl away and roll down a very long and (very rocky) hill. He is found near the middle by a peasant woman, who picks him up... and drops him once again to roll down the rest of the hill. That very act should set up how ridiculous this movie is going to be. If you aren't prepared for these kinds of surprizes to continue, then this movie isn't for you. Chosen One then is found and raised by rodents (cheap joke but certainly nowhere near the best in the movie). Throughout his life he is hunted, and so constantly fighting for his life his fighting skills are quite amazing as he walks along... searching for Master Pain, to kill him and avenge his family.
In the vien of Airplane, Naked Gun and Hot Shots, this movie is complete lunacy... even more-so than those mentioned if you can imagine that. Some have compared it to Woody Allen's "What's Up Tiger Lily?" because it combines old movie footage with new footage, but that's where the similarity ends. Steve Oedekerk wanted complete freedom from the constraints of comedy rules for this movie, and that's exactly what we get. However unlike the similar genre of improvisational comedy, this movie is edited to include the most funny moments and dialogue (mostly). Some notions in life are thought about too much when the solution is obvious, so for this movie you may have to regress a little bit to realise how funny it can be (whatever substances you may or may not use to do so is out of my control). And there are all different kinds of laughs to be appreciated here. Most of them are things I'd forgotten was funny during my childhood, but that's not to say that they are completely immature.
Maybe some reviewers felt the need to bash Steve Oedekerk because he not only starred in the movie, but he also wrote it, directed it, produced it, and did most of the voice overs. And while it may seem arrogant, nothing could be further from the truth. This was an experiment... just like the anime Furi Kuri, or the first Star Wars movie, or video games like the original Super Mario Bros., and as such I'm sure that the director may have concluded that the results could have completely backfired. However the results are in fact more impressive than most of Steve's other works like the "Thumbs" series or Jimmy Neutron, or even Ace Ventura. He could have easily gone the way of complete gross-out jokes that many former SNL cast member's seem so commited to, (vile though they may be) ...he could have throw a lot of sex and flashy images at the audience, he could have even vindictively directly parodied certain films which "deserve" it. But he kept things in balance, and he directs with a kind of innocence (that oddly went against Ace Ventura's character traits for the sequel he directed).
The original movie from which half of this film is taken, (called Tiger and Crane Fists) was directed by Jimmy Wang Yu, and Oedekerk directed his film in exactly the same way. Even when fighting a computer generated cow, the footage matches the old footage extremely well, (although the DVD version cleans the newer footage up a bit too well). There is some very good composit work done to make Steve O fit into the old footage, many are love connection scenes with a character from the original film named Ling. The curly cues on her face and cute demeanor would make anyone swoon. Other original film characters make similarly interesting appearances, such as Master Tang of the crane style Kung Fu school. He becomes likable because of Steve's silly voice over and his hilarious dialogue. And the humor in the antics of the individual characters is where the movie shines, even though the new footage has it's moments, the re-edited old footage feels like long lost comedic genius that was lost in time. Steve must be thanked for fleshing this idea out.
So what's so funny? There are some jokes about bodily fluids, but they are somewhat clever yet unique. Still they are few and far between, so you needn't worry. Most of the jokes are about the ridiculous English dubbing and strange scenerios made in Hong Kong movies of the 70s, literal impossiblities of time and space, and how often times heros and villians over-emphasize their strengths. And they are easily grasped once you appreciate the actual voice work, (if sometimes needing a "getting used to") which was done entirely by Steve Oedekerk with one exception. Some reviewers have gone on record to say that the jokes repeat themselves making the movie too long of a skit, I never felt such a feeling when watching the movie and as of yet have no idea of what they're referring to.
-So 5 stars? Yes.
-Why? Because the movie does exactly what it's supposed to, it's extremely funny if you aren't too high brow of a movie expert, plus the DVD is packed with extras.
-Would you recommend this to anyone? Yes, and everyone. Everyone should see this movie at least once, but not take it so seriously.
-Is the DVD worth buying? Yes, because you gain a lot of insight into the reasons for the making of this movie, how the movie was made, and the extras are plentiful (even more-so than some supposedly "big" movies). You can even watch the movie with the original Mandarin Chinese and Gibberish English dialogue done before Odedekerk's voice overs.
-Who is Tonguey? You'll just have to find out.
-Will there be a sequel? Supposedly we'll be seeing Kung Pow 2: Tongue of Fury in 2006, hopefully... cross your fingers with eyeballs on the ends of them.
26 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on April 25, 2002
Sometimes a movie's best charm is in perfectly hitting upon a certain relaxed pace that lets a viewer just flow with its light screwball comedy. This movie did that for me. Sometimes specific episodes seemed like they'd be tedious or boring in some movies, but this movie set its mood so precisely that they were welcome here. A movie like CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON, with its dead-serious tone demanding a creedence that was certainly stretched by scenes seeming to defy gravity and other things, invites having minor fun poked at it by a spoof like this. As such this movie is timely, and that perhaps increases its charm. Should someone call this film stupid, that would be hard to refute, but if stupid, it's delightfully stupid. Maybe its success is due to being perfectly attuned in what it demands from its audience. I've seen movies that were stupid but begged to be taken seriously, and watching them can range from embarrasing to insufferable. But KUNG POW: ENTER THE FIST begs only to be taken for precisely the farcical diversion that it is.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on July 18, 2002
One of the funniest parodies I've ever seen. The dubbing is hilarious. "If you've got an [butt], I will kick it!" "Gentlemen, from now on I demand that you refer to me as Betty." "I apologize for him. We trained him wrong on purpose, as a joke." The guy with the squeaky shoes and the big nipples is my favorite. I'd say anybody who generally loves Ben Stiller and Tom Green movies will enjoy this, since they're my two favorite comedians. There's also a lot of Mystery Science Theater 3000 influence in KP. I'll definitely be getting KP on DVD, along with everything Ben Stiller is in. Feel free to visit my wishlist and buy me anything on it!
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on August 19, 2002
I understand that TIGER AND CRANE FISTS was a serious martial arts flick, and then the creator of this took that flick and dubbed it with new sound to make a comedy. Seems the video portion of the original was surprisingly adaptable for this purpose. If you thought that CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON was a cinematic gem, then you might find tinkering with martial arts films like this to be a sacrilege. But if you thought CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON was overrated, then you just might think it could stand some of the same treatment that created this present spoof. Those who like farce should find a lot of laughs in KUNG POW! ENTER THE FIST. For those of us who find martial arts films to be a hit-and-miss proposition, a spoof like this can be a refreshing diversion. It had me thinking what other films I might like to see twisted this way, not necessarily with total disrespect for the originals. I thought of Jackie Chan movies, for example. I really sort of like Jackie, but surely I'm not alone in finding that plot lucidity is sometimes not the strong suit in his movies. So it got me to wondering if any of his might be given this sort of treatment and maybe even produce sometimes a movie more coherent than the original. But for that matter, why limit it to the martial arts genre? It's equally intriguing to wonder what this kind of re-dubbing might do with THE VIRGIN SUICIDES or VANILLA SKY or INSOMNIA. Maybe even WHAT DREAMS MAY COME or MEET JOE BLACK? Well, that might be asking too much.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on September 14, 2008
Kung Pow- Enter the Fist
This is a parody movie. Wait...do not run away just yet. Unlike the mass of crappy parody movies that are produced these days, this movie is actually very funny. If you are into the Japanese Martial Arts genre, you need to pick this one up. This movie is a parody of that specific genre. Luckily, you do not actually have to known anything about the movies it is spoofing to find this movie laugh-out-loud funny. Even if you hate martial arts movies, you will enjoy this one.
The movie starts in a small village. Master Pain and his group of thugs enter a home looking for a baby. The baby could affect their evil plans in the future if he is not stopped now. After the baby takes down most of the gang, Master Pain burns down the home in hopes to kill the child. Unfortunately, the baby narrowly barely escapes the flames. His family has been killed, so he is raised by the local wildlife.
The baby would become known as "The Chosen One." Chosen One will be forced to fight off Master Pain's henchmen for the rest of his life. However, after growing into an adult, he encounters Pain in a nearby village. Chosen One now seeks revenge on Pain, who will change his name to Betty. "Isn't Betty a woman's name" is the question running through your and Chosen One's mind. Betty is still a force to be reckoned with despite his feminine name.
This is not a intelligent comedy. Kung Pow expects you to lose about 20 IQ before viewing it. There is nothing wrong with a stupid (in a funny way) comedy every now and then. Some of the jokes are insanely humorous; other jokes are lukewarm stupid comedy. All of it mixes fairly well together. You will see references to The Lion King and The Matrix at certain points of the movie that will make you laugh. The other idiotic characters will have you laughing for a long time.
The only problem with this film is that the video quality is low sometimes. Kung Pow takes pieces from other Japanese movies that originally played in the 70s. I enjoy this idea, but some might get annoyed by it. The ending credits show how they achieved this in more detail.
I wish a sequel were made for this movie. There is plenty of reference to the making of a sequel in this film, but no sequel has been made to my knowledge. This movie has become a Cult Classic and the sequel would probably ruin this movie anyway. I want you to pick up this movie right now if you enjoy a fun spoof every now and then.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Kung-Pow has got to be the stupidest movie I've ever seen.
That doesn't mean it isn't funny, though. I spent most of the 80-something minutes laughing, so how bad could it have been..?
Writer/Director Steve Oedekerk stars as "The Chosen One" (raised in a ditch by "Various Rodents..), chosen for WHAT we never learn. We Do know that the mark of The Chosen One is a bizarre face that sits on the tip of his tongue, and the the evil Master Pain, A.K.A. "Betty", wants him dead. That's pretty much it, plot-wise. The really amazing part of the movie is this: It's an old Hong-Kong action movie, with Oedekerk digitally inserted; kind of a Zelig/What's Up Tiger Lilly?/Forrest Gump mish-mash. (Stick around for the credits and you'll see scenes from the original, and see how they put Oedekerk into the action.)
The BIG problem with Kung-Pow IS Oedekerk. He looks like your next-door neighbor; not someone who should be on the big-screen. I just didn't think HE was that funny. (He DID provide EVERY VOICE-OVER for the Movie, so I guess he's funny as long as I can't see him...) The real laughs come from the other characters.
There are a lot of laughs to be had in Kung-Pow. As long as you're expecting a low-brow, lightweight film, you won't be disappointed.
And stay until after the credits; there's still one more joke....
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on November 2, 2002
Okay, so you've seen the commercials, the trailers, the magazine ads, and I'll agree that they did the movie no justice. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and take the risk of watching a movie that could be potentially bad or potentially great. This movie will entertain a certain audience; an audience that can sit back and say, "This is a low-budget movie with a crazy man at the helm. I am ready for anything." If you don't like spending money on a movie that might make you say, "That was ridiculous! Why would anyone say/do/suggest that kind of thing in this situation??" then don't spend your money on this movie, because you will not truly appreciate this hour and a half of raw and senseless slapstick comedy.
Steve Oedekerk plays a martial arts prodigy aptly dubbed The Chosen One who is stuck in the typical 70's Hong Kong Action Flick storyline: An evil kung-fu master(body doubled by Leo Lee) named Master Pain...I mean...Betty, has killed the Chosen One's family, and he must avenge their deaths. The Chosen One, who wailed on everybody anyway, travels the East and trains in his unorthodox fighting style to locate and prepare himself for the Evil Betty. On his way he is assissted by many wacky and ludicrous counterparts, which range from his dog who is constantly disappearing form wide angle shots, and the one-boobed superwoman, Whoa(Jennifer Tung). The movie's visual quality and low-budget are stunning to say the least. The movie took eight days to shoot, and some scenes were shot in parking lots, beaches, and even Oedekerk's backyard! This short filming time is due to the fact that more than 3/4 of the movie is old footage from a 70's martial arts sleeper. Oedekerk digitally replaced the main character with himself in scenes where the Chosen One was needed and often just replaced the original character's head with his own. This technique was also topped off with beautifully accurate stage designs that were almost identical replicates from the movie it spoofs. All dialogue, except for Jennifer Tung's, is dubbed by Oedekerk in the most wacky way possible. Most lines were improvised and make for an almost impossible storyline, however this is NOT a movie rich in story!
Rent this movie when you just want a night of hilarity with no strings attached. Keep your standards for the comedy high, and your standards for the story extremely low, and let the impossibility of this movie entertain you. You will either like this movie, or you won't. There's really no grey area. Keep in mind that this movie is no blockbuster, but it is one of my personal top three favorite movies. You can't get much more original than this! Although the movie is actually a spin-off from the original kung-fu flick it spoofs, it's done at a perspective never thought of before. If you like this movie, check out some other Oedekerk movies and featurettes such as the Thumbation series(Thumb Wars: The Phantom Cuticle, The Blair Thumb, Frankenthumb, Bat Thumb, Thumbtanic, The Godthumb) or some of his previous works like the two Nutty Professor movies with Eddie Murphey and Ace Ventura 2: When Nature Calls.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 12, 2006
If you don't like this movie then simply turn it off, it's not your speed. If you're a fan of films like `Scary Movie' or better yet `Monty Python' then this is a movie for you. Dubbing himself into a 1976 Hong Kong film, Steve Oedekerk gives us one hilarious acid trip of a film complete with quirky dialog and hilarious special effects. Spoofing everything that makes classic Kung Fu films so funny in the first place and adding a touch of modern cinema like a Matrix fighting cow, `Kung Pow! Enter the Fist' delivers laugh after laugh after laugh. So little tonguey may be ridiculous, but renaming the villain Betty was a classic stroke of genius!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 30, 2005
I always read negative reviews first at Amazon.com. If the negative reviews have no substance, and their critiques sound overly-biased or misunderstanding, then I figure that the product is probably good enough to try. For Kung Pow, I don't think that most of the people who gave negative reviews really "get it".
People were slamming the acting, the production levels, etc. Hello!? It's suppose to be bad and cheesy! That's what makes movies like Red Neck Zombies, Evil Dead 2, etc. great movies. They are corny, and they don't try to fool anyone into thinking that they are anything else. Being bad is what makes this movie good. Oederick (sp?) is also a perfect (if convenient) lead for this movie as well. You don't WANT Will Smith or Jim Carey or someone like that in a movie like this. The character's "blandness" (straightness) is what keeps the movie together. The movie itself is charismatic and attention-getting, for the lead character to be overly-developed would have simply caused confusion and made the project fall flat on it's face.
If you don't like over-the-top movies, then of course you won't like this one. But if you are the type of person that doesn't like that kind of movie, giving a negative review and calling it dumb would be like someone who hates rap giving a negative review for a rap album. It's very misleading.
Personally, I laughed quite a bit while watching this movie. Some of the set-ups for jokes were brilliant, and many of the jokes hit their mark perfectly. A good example is when Wimp-lo and the girl he likes are first introduced, and Wimp-lo walks up to a guy and asks him a question, and then you see the guy's lips moving for like 10 seconds, with a short 1 second "I don't know" dubbed in at the end. Yeah, it's been done a hundred times; but then again so have most concepts/jokes. It's all about delivery, performance, etc. And in this case, Kung Pow hit the nail right on the head; the timing was absolutely perfect, and it made what could have been a stale "I've already seen that" joke into a very funny "I'm gonna rewind that and watch again" joke. This is a small example, but I think it is representative of the whole movie. You either "get it," and can laugh along; or you don't "get it" and insist that the movie is bad.
I don't think people realise how they sound when they say that this movie has bad acting, production, etc. This is like the people who say rather proudly to wresting fans: "You know that Pro wrestling is fake, right?" (fwiw, I don't watch pro wrestling, I just think it's a good example). Gee, really? Who knew? This is so condescending that it's hard to say anything at all in response. Actually it's scripted and not "fake" per se, but that's another discussion. Anyway, it's the same thing with these types of movies. Saying that they are "bad" is doing nothing more than stating the obvious. It never claimed to be anything else. Why give a negative review for something that is living up to what it claims to be?