Review: Kung Fu Hustle

Stephen Chow has already earned his feathers big time in the niche Hong Kong cinema. From cameos to small starring roles in the early eighties to more prominent roles later in the decade. Then came writing and directing later on. His King of Comedy (1999) might have been his turning point towards stardom (that’s as far as I have tracked him down, at least), and the title is nothing short of fitting. His movies have always had a wonderful sense of humor, always written in an unconventional way.
And again, after the worldwide success of Shoalin Soccer, he ups the ante with this one. Superlatives over superlatives, and hence the special effects gets used more and more (while it was only subtly used in Shoalin Soccer). But also again, is the strange but fun way the story unfolds, where you can’t guess where it’s going, and hence being more enjoyable. Tied to that, characters get the same treatment, with no heroic stereotypes around to spoil the fun.
While I have to admit his two previous movies had a more focused storyline, this one is still a hustle you don’t want to miss.8+.

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