Review: Foot Fist Way Leaves Much to be Desired

You know how it is with studios and the movie reviewing game. Usually, they'll offer you drugs or bags of money to give their film some "critical love" which means that you can generally find a few positive elements to focus your critique on (because you're high and/or rich). Sadly that's not the case here, because although the film had some interesting moments the sum of its existence seems to leave the audience with a burning question, namely, "Why does this exist?"

The Foot Fist Way is shot in the style of Waiting for Guffman with the vibe of Napoleon Dynamite. The good news is that the jokes aren't really telegraphed. The bad news is that there doesn't seem to be me much in the way of actual "jokes." It's the story of Fred Simmons (Danny R. McBride) as a Tae Kwon Do instructor in a smallish town; he teaches students ranging in age from kindergarten to senior citizens. He's married to a gal named Suzie (Mary Jane Bostic) who does her best to ruin his life. The story arc is Fred's journey to ... mental stability?

Yeah, something like that. The main problem with this film is that lack of coherence. It was clearly filmed on the cheap, which I can respect, but the tone is all over the place. Should we feel bad for Fred's clear incompetence? Should we laugh at the man? The hope seems to be that you'll laugh at something, anything, but there's no actual plan, dialogue, or motivation to drive the ha-ha. It would be as if you were dropped off in season five of The Office without any backstory. Overall, you just feel a bit odd about watching the whole spectacle play out. I think I laughed half a dozen times or so but I wondered if I should be doing something better with my time at least double that. This is not an ideal ratio.

Will there be folks who dig this? I suppose. The ultra-cool movie insidery fans who sing the praises of movies like Shoot 'Em Up come to mind. Essentially, if you like heading off to films that you feel like most people aren't going to "get" you'll probably be comfortable here. My problem is I don't think there was much to get, despite the 90 minutes they spent showing me all those moving pictures. I don't know. It probably would have helped if I was high.

Grade: C-