After the success of “Shaolin Soccer” Stephan Chow returns with his follow up classic “Kung Fu Hustle” which he wrote, produced, directed, and stars in. Chow delivers a great action comedy fermented by great characters with excellent skills such as “the twelve kick style”, “Toad Style”, “Buddha Palm”, “Iron fist”, and the almost unbeatable “Lions Roar”.
The time is the early 1900’s, Sing (chow) is a hustler who turned bad (as a child) after he was hustled for all his money when he purchased a bogus Buddha Palm manual. When Sing goes to “pig sty ally” impersonating the ruthless Ax Gang, he ends up getting the wrong kind of attention from the real Ax Gang. Quickly, the leader of the Ax Gang (Danny Chan Kwok-Kwan) discovers that Sing is skilled in picking locks, he sends Sing on a task so that he may become a member of the Gang. This leads Sing to discovering his potential.
Keep an eye out for the musician hit men that kill with their music, slicing heads with chords and notes. The Ax Gang is full of 1900’s swagger as they dance in synchronicity accompanied by their axes to musical numbers. Adding to the allure is well performed martial arts mixed with a perfect balance of comedy.
Sam Ho of the filmcomment.com writes: “Chow is a genius”
“Hustle” was the highest grossing film in China for seven years, totally but kicking, yet funny. A true classic!