Howdy all you Supercultists out there on the interwebz! I’m Bad Movie Professor Cameron Coker (BS in “Crowdfunding” with a minor in “Laser Raptors”) and I’ll be posting my hype-tacular speeches every week along with some long lost speeches from past Supercult Shows!
This week Supercult tries to hack into the past and ride a dinosaur into the future after basking in the glory of Kung Fury!
Long ago, in the early 1980’s, Miami-Dade PD detective Kung Fury is granted superhuman kung fu powers after suddenly being struck by lightning and bitten by a cobra while apprehending a red ninja in a back alley. Years later in 1985 Adolf Hitler, a.k.a. “Kung Führer”, enters the timeline and attacks the precinct! Can Kung Fury and his team of hackers, dinosaurs, valkyries and gods defeat Hitler and save the timestream? Tonight it’ll take a cop from the future to fight an enemy from the past in Kung Fury!
Kung Fury is a 2015 Swedish martial arts comedy short film written, directed, and starring David Sandberg that was crowdfunded through Kickstarter from December 2013 to January 2014. The Kickstarter exceeded its target goal of $200,000 but fell short of the feature film goal of $1 million, with a total of $630,019 in pledges from 17,713 backer.
Sandberg himself is a Swedish filmmaker who quit his commercial job directing TV commercials and music videos in 2012 to focus on writing a script for an action comedy set in the 80s. He initially spent $5,000 producing and shooting footage with his friends that later became the trailer used in the Kickstarter campaign. Due to his limited budget, the majority of the film was shot at Sandberg’s office in Umeå, Sweden. Because Sandberg could only afford one police uniform and limited costumes, many of the crowd, stunt, and creature scenes, such as the police precinct shooting or Barbarianna riding her giant wolf, involve heavy compositing and green screen effects. Many of the characters’ voices were intentionally dubbed over as well to give the film a cheaper feel, with some of the non-English speaking actors reciting their lines phonetically.
In keeping with the film’s 80s theme, the visual effects artists softened the film clarity and added videotape wear effects to give the illusion of it being a worn VHS copy being played on an old VCR. One instance of this effect is in the scene where the Viking Babe Katana summons Thor. Originally Joanna Häggblom played Katana as seen in the trailer, but because Helene Ahlson replaced Häggblom for the actual film, visual scratches and distortion effects were added to the scene to mask the cast change. Many of the backers for the film are assisted the production as extras and one even lent his white Lamborghini Countach replica to Sandberg for interior shots and for the music video for “True Survivor”, one of the songs featured in the film.
Kung Fury made it’s debut at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival and premiered on YouTube, Steam, SVT2 in Sweden and the El Rey Network in the US, on May 28, 2015. Critics and audiences alike responded well to Kung Fury’s hilarious and awesome homage to 80s martial arts and police action films. By June 1, the film had received over 10 million views on YouTube and as of July 7, 2015, that number increased to 17 million.
Kung Fury has an 8.3 on IMDB (the same score held by revered classics like 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), Raging Bull (1980), Chinatown (1974), Metropolis (1927), Die Hard (1988), and the Seventh Seal (1957)) and no critical reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, however, 99% of Rotten Tomatoes users say that they WANT to see Kung Fury!
Tyler Richardson of Latino-Review gave the film an A, commenting that “What Black Dynamite got so perfect about Blaxploitation films, this does wonderfully for 80’s cop movies.”
Scott Weinberg of Nerdist Industries called it “a 31-minute masterpiece that feels like it fell right out of 1985 and hit just about every awesome b-movie genre on the way down.”
Todd Brown of Twitch Film also praised the film, calling it “a thirty-minute long, nonstop assault of some of the most astounding visual gags ever assembled in one place. Kung Fury knows its audience, knows it damn well, and while it has little to offer to anyone outside of its particular niche, for people within that niche this is absolute gold.”
Melissa Locker of Vanity Fair heavily praised the film, calling it: “The best movie ever, of course.”
There isn’t much else to say Supercultists. This movie is critically acclaimed, produced for less than a million bucks, has a run time of 31 minutes, and sports its own companion game, Kung Fury: Street Rage, that pays homage to classic beat ‘em up games such as Streets of Rage and Double Dragon. It features Nazi’s, kung fu, arcade robots, giant wolves, the Nintendo Power Glove, barbarians, jetski-riding cobra spirit animals, ninjas, time travel, Ray-Bans, Gatling guns, viking babes, bandanas, a T-Rex, Hackerbots, Thor, and a guy named Triceracop, a half-man, half-triceratops cop! David Hasselhoff even guest stars as the Hoff 9000 and sings one of the songs for the film!
Kung Fury is so mind-blowingly awesome that David Sandberg is currently working with producers Seth Grahame-Smith (the author of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer) and David Katzenberg (son of DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg) on a full-length feature film version of Kung Fury! Can you say, future Supercult screening??
This incredible short was hand crafted with love just for you! Enjoy it like you would a fine wine. Chug it and then throw up in a dumpster out back!
The Supercult show is proud to present: Kung Fury!