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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A little Late Movie Review - Kung Fu Girls Club (????)

Competent film making?  Proper equipment?  Cohesive storytelling?  Talented actors?  No longer do you need to deal with all of that superfluous crap!  Now, thanks to Robbie Ryan, you too can make a video, put it on YouTube, and call it an "Independently Distributed Film".  Boy, oh boy, do I wish I was being sarcastic there, but no, Kung Fu Girls Club (in all of its improper lack of titular punctuation) exists, and this makes me very happy.

I do not have anything against someone making a movie, putting themselves out there and trying to make a name for themselves in the industry.  Some of the greatest directors of the modern era got their careers started doing exactly that.  Hell, it is arguable that the entire movie industry would not exist if it were not for the race to innovation that occurred in the 1890's, where inventors copied each other's patents and short films in an effort to be the most acclaimed name in the new art of movie making.  That said, time has taught us that when some people get behind a camera, the result is not good, but still epic

I do not know much about the film maker Robbie Ryan.  He has a blog, a YouTube channel but little else really identifies him.  I can tell you he does have a strange sense of humor, and that this movie could be some sort of campy joke, but it is honestly difficult to tell.  Kung Fu Girls Club follows a teen named Tsunami (yep, I am pretty sure how they spell it too) who transfers to a high school where all ten of the other students are complete assholes (like real high school I guess).  When aliens disguised as humans (thus revealing this film's budget, as though the core production was not a dead giveaway) attack out of nowhere, paralyzing the rest of the student body, an Evanesence fan-girl named Sage informs Tsunami and her friend that they are bestowed with great power and they are destined to fight these shape-shifting creatures.  They give two more girls prop MacGuffins in the form of necklaces that give them powers also and the four of them proceed to fight the aliens.  There is almost zero build up to this, one second they are acting out a poor-man's Breakfast Club, the next they are fighting black-clad aliens, complete with lame after-effects!

The movie was filmed in what appears to be a single weekend at a school campus I can only assume the cast and crew broke into.  Even the hospital room set appears to be a low angle shot of a public restroom carefully framed to cut out all of the fixtures, leaving only the patient, the swinging door, the concerned student and a sketchy guy in a lab coat that I think also appears as a different character in the film (I cannot be certain of this though).  The otherwise empty halls of this building are reused over and over (I'm guessing in an attempt to avoid security cameras).  Okay, okay.  I kid.  I cannot accuse this production and those involved with any criminal activity legally, so I'll just say that this is a really, really bad movie that appears to have been filmed entirely in one location over a very short period of time.

Now, as for the action, it's bad.  Each fight scene is filmed clumsily and filled with goofy effects.  The one actor who seems to possess any actual martial arts ability seems out of place in this film too, playing a villain named Takahashi, he is also the only person on this project with an IMDB page with some pretty impressive stunt credits to his name.  Obviously attempting to mimic anime, the Girls Club members have transformation scenes for their "fighting modes" which come complete with fourth-wall-breaking, excessive poses, brightly-colored wigs and forced Japanese names.

Now, normally I would give a little detail and information about the film but, I can't find any.  As I said, the aforementioned Takahashi, played by Ilram Choi is the only credited actor in the film I could find any information on and even he does not credit this movie on his IMDB page, I just recognize him from the photos.  The filmmaker, Robbie Ryan, did not seem to do much to promote the movie either, as I can not find any online references to this film other than a few photos, mostly from the blog of Robbie Ryan himself (Where you can also watch the movie!).  Now, there are references to multiple "episodes", but these appear to be segmented parts of the film as a whole, probably its original format on YouTube.   I found this gem simply searching for fantasy Kung-Fu movies online and was very excited about this one by the five minute mark.

If it sounds like I'm bashing this film earlier in the article, know that I thoroughly enjoyed watching Kung Fu Girls Squad and strongly recommend everyone give it a shot.  This is the bad film bad film fans dream of.  It is filled with plot issues, bad editing, bad acting, bad effects, bad everything, and the end result is a glorious example of schlock fun.  The only thing that really grated on my nerves after a while was the buzzing, 8-bit techno soundtrack that sounds like a bee trapped in an old radiator.  The voices of some of the aliens are even layered with this buzzing, low-end sound and it is truly awful.  Still, there are so many laughs to be had with this film, and if you love flicks like the Room and Birdemic, you really, really need to watch this movie.  I found it posted in a number of locations online including YouTube and with the credits taken out, this one is less than an hour in length.  You will not regret this sit!

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