Kung Fu Hustle | 2005 | R | - 2.8.5
Highly stylized martial arts comedy taking place in an anachronistic version of 1930's Shanghai: The dominant criminal gang invades a slum, but has a very hard time subduing its residents when some of them are revealed to be extraordinary kung fu masters. The battles escalade in audacity until a veritable kung fu genius shows up. With Stephen Chow, Chan Kwok Kwok Kwan, Yuen Wah, Yuen Qiu and Huang Sheng Yi. Directed by Stephen Chow. In Mandarin and Cantonese with English subtitles. [1:35]
- A woman inhales forcefully and her chest expands to an exaggerated size. One character wears his pants pulled partly down in the back revealing his bare buttocks in many scenes; and a man's pants are torn revealing a part of his bare buttock. A man is bare-chested while bathing. A corpulent man is bare-chested and when he pounds his arm down his ample chest jiggles.
► A man caresses his wife's clothed buttocks as she walks with an exaggerated wiggle. Two men admire a woman as she walks past them.
► A married man appears to be flirting with a woman who is not his wife, and says, "Let me give you a physical exam"; she then kisses him on the cheek. A married man has lipstick on his cheek in a few scenes suggesting that a woman has kissed him (she was not his wife).
► A woman wears a short and low-cut negligee. We see a woman's bra shoot through the air after she slams into a billboard, and we see a bra hanging from a clothesline. A man sits in his boxer shorts and undershirt.
- Two men fight with many punches and kicks: one has long nails that cut the other's chest (we see some blood), many ethereal swords fly toward one man, he dodges them, he picks up a large stone wheel, throws it at the man throwing the swords, and the stone dissolves into dust; then ethereal fists sail toward the man and when he is hit we see indentations in his chest and abdomen, and some bloody wounds, and he falls to the ground. Another man fights with spears and knocks away many ethereal swords.
► A large group of men with axes surround several men and a woman, and all but one of the men are shot: A man runs but falls to the ground -- his leg is apparently cut off below the knee by an ax -- and a man stands over him and hits him with an ax several times (we hear crunching and squishing and see splattered blood on the killer's face).
► A man's head is cut off (we see, but not distinctly, his head and body fall to the ground separately). We see a cat jumping off of a roof and then see it, in shadow, being cut in half and see blood splatter onto a wall. We see many black and white photographs of dead bodies with axes in their chests and backs and with blood-soaked clothing.
► A man hits a man in the head with a piece of a wooden beam, the man punches the man hard in the stomach, kicks him into the air, slams him to the ground, and then punches his face several times causing his head to be totally pushed into the floor as if he's a cartoon (we hear that his face is pulp, but he's alive). A man hits a man in the head with a piece of a wooden beam twice causing his head to bleed profusely.
► A man punches a man, he falls off of a balcony, he is hit a few more times mid-air, and the two fight with quick punches; then one stomps and flattens the other's foot. In another scene, a man is threatened by many men with axes, and as they swing at him, he punches, kicks and fends them off, and many men are thrown through the air; the man then stomps on the feet of a few of his adversaries, apparently crushing and flattening them. Several men are thrown through walls, windows, high into the air and they slam down on the ground.
► A man throws a knife at a woman, it hits a beam above him, the knife ricochets and hits the man in the shoulder; another man throws a knife and hits the first man in the other shoulder, and the second man then stabs the first man twice more in the shoulder by accident (we see the knives sticking out of his body, but he seems fine otherwise).
► A man strikes a "toad" pose: he is on all fours, his cheeks and throat swell up, and he jumps toward another man, becoming a projectile: he pushes the man through several walls and then high into the sky. When the airborne man starts falling back to the ground his hands are in flames and he plummets to the ground looking like a flaming meteorite; he eventually pushes out his hands, slapping a man on the ground and making a huge handprint in the ground.
► A man punches a man in the face causing his head to spin around a few times (we see his neck twisted, and presumably he's dead). A man and a woman are stabbed in the stomach with small pointed instruments, they grab onto another man and they are twisted together in a wrestling move, struggling against each other.
► A woman is shot in the back as she walks away and she is thrown through the air by the force. A man moans and dies from his wounds, and another man dies from his wounds.
► A man fights with two men, one man is punched knocking a tooth out (we see blood), two men punch each other in the hand and in the face, and a man slams them together, shoves them to the ground, spins them around and throws them through the air. A man falls down a flight of stairs, he imagines seeing a wall of blood flowing toward him.
► A man kicks many gang members attacking a slum: we see some crashing through windows, others crashing into balconies, and another man joins in, punching more gang members; the gang members bring out guns, and a man with a long stick disarms them and then beats many men with his stick (we hear many loud blows).
► Many ethereal skeletal warriors with swords sail toward a man and a woman, the woman screams, and the warriors turn to dust and two men are left with shredded clothing.
► A large number of gang members walk into a slum, a woman is grabbed by the hair, a man is held down onto the ground, other villagers are shoved and forced to lie on the ground, and a woman and boy are doused with a flammable liquid; a man throws a lit lighter toward them, but another man catches the lighter. A man raises an ax to strike a man, the screen goes black and the man with the ax is crumpled in a barrel with a broken back (we see him later foaming at the mouth and twitching).
► A man and a woman fight a man, and in a close-up they kick him in the face and head causing his features to become squished; all three then exchange powerful and loud punches and kicks, the woman screams, a man kicks her in the head, she is thrown back against wall, and the woman hits the man in the head with a stick.
► A man twists another man's arm like a corkscrew, and then does the same thing to a woman's arm. A man hits and kicks a man and a woman (she has a bloody mouth), the woman screams through the shell of a large bell creating a megaphone, the noise tears a building apart, we see dust and shrapnel and we see a man thrown back through the air (he has a large wound on his head).
► A woman punches a man in the face, and a woman punches a man hard in the stomach and he spits blood. A man is punched hard in the face repeatedly (we see blood on his nose), he is threatened with a gun, he grabs the gun, holds it to his head, pulls the trigger, and then catches the bullet between two fingers. A man has a bloody nose and face, he is pushed down, another man spits on his face and a pot of boiling water is spilled on him (he yells but we do not see anything).
► A woman hits a man in the head, then punches him repeatedly, then throws him out a window, and we see him crash through awnings and land hard on the ground; the woman then throws a flower pot that breaks on his head (he is fine later).
► Three men spar with many kicks and punches and one of them falls off a balcony (we hear him crash into a garbage can below). Two men are chained from their wrists and hang, a man throws an ax at each of them but they fall to the ground just before they are struck.
► A man's hair is set on fire, a man throws a flammable liquid on his head to try to put it out, and the fire grows (we see him flailing and see smoke billowing out of the car window). We hear what sounds like someone being beaten in another room, a man is thrown into a large plaque hanging on a wall and he crashes to the floor.
► A man hits a young man in the head and he falls to the ground unconscious (it is implied that he is dead). A man repeatedly slams two men's heads against the bench of a train car. Several boys hold a girl by the hair trying to steal her lollipop, another boy intervenes, the group of boys attacks him with punches and kicks (he has a bloody nose) and then they urinate on him. A woman beats a man with her slipper repeatedly. A man slaps a man in the face. A man robs an ice-cream street vendor and threatens her with a knife.
► A man spills a cage full of snakes all over a man who is on the ground, the snakes slither around him and two cobras bite the man on the lip (we see his lip bleeding, and later swollen to an exaggerated level; the veins in his arms also bulge and pulsate and he's in pain).
► A woman chases a man (the man has three knives sticking out of his shoulders) along a road, they run super-fast, they run and jump, one slips under an oncoming truck, and the other jumps over and crashes into a billboard.
► A man throws a firecracker that explodes on another man's head, blowing a hole in his hat (the man is fine). A woman yells loudly, glass breaks and people cover their ears. A woman threatens a man by cracking her knuckles and making a fist. A man throws an ax at a woman and she catches it.
► A man in a large metal drum pounds on the sides of the drum (apparently in pain) and makes imprints of his fists, face, etc. A man kicks his foot up cutting a deep groove in the floor, breaking down a wall and causing people to run and scream.
► A woman grieves over the death of her son. A man and a woman argue and hit each other. A man is grabbed by two men and forcibly taken to a nightclub.
► A boy has large globs of mucous around his nose. A few characters have badly decayed and blackened teeth, two men have very long and yellowed fingernails, and a man has exaggerated stitches on his head. A wounded man is wrapped in bandages while he heals (he looks like a mummy).
- 1 F-word, 8 scatological terms, 12 anatomical terms, 8 mild obscenities, 4 derogatory terms for homosexuals, name-calling (numbskull, wimps).
- A man drinks a clear liquor and appears to stagger, presumably drunk. A man drinks alcohol from a flask in several scenes. One woman has a lit cigarette hanging from her mouth throughout the entire movie; in a couple of scenes she inhales the whole cigarette with one drag. A man smokes a pipe that could contain opium or some other drug. A man smokes a cigarette and a man smokes a cigar in a few scenes.
- Gang violence, fear, poverty, ambition, world peace, greed, blackmail, destiny, effeminate men, power, responsibility, sorrow, mental asylums, martial arts masters, supernatural powers.
- Things are not always as they appear, and people may have well-hidden talents.
Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.
We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.
Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.
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