So, just to be entirely honest here, the original topic for this week’s column was to be Akiba’s Trip, a goofy beat-em-up that is gaining a cult following on the Playstation platforms that is making its way to Steam. I’m still going to hit that, but it is taking me longer to complete than I originally thought. In my panic, I wasn’t sure what I could possibly write about. So, instead of playing more of the game like I should have, I watched the newly (and freely) released Kung Fury last night. And then I watched it again today. Holy ****, this thing is awesome.
This half-hour short film stars the titular Kung Fury, a cop on the edge. After watching his partner get cut down by a rogue kung fu master, he is struck by lightning and then bitten by a cobra, rendering him the Chosen One: the only person who can wield the fabled Kung Fury style. What follows is a time-spanning adventure that finds him desperately trying to stop Adolf Hitler, the self styled Kung Fuhrer.
With this basic plot description out of the way, I must confess: I don’t wish to give any more particulars on the plot and the jokes from here on. To do so would be a disservice to anyone who has not watched this yet, and could ruin the experience David Sandburg and company have worked so hard to create. My describing the jokes would ruin what has to be the best thing I have viewed in a long, long time.
Everything about this piece is a loving homage to the 80’s, from the VHS styled tracking lines that pop up throughout (don’t worry, they don’t over-do that joke), to the expertly cheesy low grade synth-pop soundtrack. While the visual effects take advantage of technology that wasn’t available during this period, it was done with a loving reverence to how the films of the era were.
The attention to detail really comes forth. Occasionally, someone might manage to accidentally create a “so bad it’s good” masterpiece. Those who end up trying to go this route intentionally usually end up just making something that’s bad. As much as I love Troma, I have to give Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead as an example. To really manage to loop the scale of quality around and do it intentionally is harder than just creating a legitimately good movie from the get-go. David Sandberg and the rest of the crew at Laser Unicorn pulled it off.
Let me just say this, both of my viewings of this flick found me with a stupid, child-like grin on my face. This thing is stupid and awesome. It is also the best action film that I’ve seen in, well, at least a decade. Do yourself a favor: if you haven’t watched this yet, do so immediately. The jokes are going to get run into the ground faster than a fake cake. It’s only been up for a couple of days, and it seems to be all anyone on my Twitter feed is talking about. Kung Fury is a phenomenon. Get in on it now.