Kung Fury is an incredible action movie that started out as a Kickstarter project before garnishing a whopping $630K total amount of pledges early last year. The 31 minute movie was released for free on Youtube just before last weekend and it has already racked up over 10 million views. The short film follows a cop with a penchant for martial arts in the 1980’s who must go back in time to assassinate Hitler.
The film is wholly a throwback and love letter to 1980’s cinema and retro styles. The SFX are deliberately trashy, one-liners are spewed frequently, 80’s synth pop plays on repeat and the acting is as hammy as you’d like it to be. However, it goes beyond hitting all the right notes, and ends up trying a little too hard sometimes. It goes beyond the immense likability of the similar throwback, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon, and it feels compelled to really live up to what the fans paid for. It is almost as though the creator and star, David Sandberg, sees this as his only chance to follow his dreams of recreating his favourite era. Despite this, it is still incredible and a really special short film.
The project earned a little over half a million dollars and you can tell that it was put to good use. Basically every scene is made digitally and the use of special effects is pulled off very well. They are meant to look low budget, while still looking fantastic. I have no idea how this independent director managed to pull it off. It looks very appropriate and awesome. The character ‘Kung Fury’ pulls off some impressive stunts including ride on the top of a car, pulling off insane flips, and taking on a seemingly unlimited swarm of Nazis with his super martial arts moves. If that list sounds awesome to you, then watch this short film as soon as you can. On the other hand, if you think it sounds dumb or brainless, then this really isn’t for you.
The short is full of action from start to finish. It’s exactly how it should be and it has an acute knowledge on formulas and pulling off generic structures. Sandberg has created a very apt throwback short and he should be proud of what he managed to do. Backers of this project should be happy with what they funded because I believe that he more than delivered on what was promised.
Of course, this wouldn’t be much of an 80’s throwback if it didn’t have a rocking theme song. Top Gun had ‘Danger Zone’ (sorry Berlin), Scarface had ‘Push It To The Limit’, Rocky 3 had ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ and Kung Fury has David Hasselhoff singing ‘True Survivor’. This song has all the ingredients of an 80’s classic. I can’t praise this song enough. It’s catchy, retro, astounding and bursting with appropriate style. The lyrics are wonderfully generic and very fitting to conventions. It’s truly an amazing song that I listen to multiple times per day.
Overall, there is not much more I can say about ‘Kung Fury’ due to how it is only half an hour long. It is however a spectacular throwback to a beloved era. It channels this time perfectly and it is a guaranteed good time for fans of trashy action. It doesn’t take itself seriously at all and this certainly isn’t for everyone.
+ AMAZING soundtrack
+ Very entertaining
- Tries too hard with cliches
- Infrequently overbearing