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Kung Fu Hustle (2004)

Kung fu (original title)
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In Shanghai, China in the 1940s, a wannabe gangster aspires to join the notorious "Axe Gang" while residents of a housing complex exhibit extraordinary powers in defending their turf.

Director:

Stephen Chow

Writers:

Stephen Chow, Kan-Cheung Tsang (as Tsang Kan Cheong) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
3,610 ( 31)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 24 wins & 46 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Stephen Chow ... Sing
Xiaogang Feng ... Crocodile Gang Boss (as Feng Xiao Gang)
Wah Yuen ... Landlord
Zhihua Dong ... Donut (as Zhi Hua Dong)
Kwok-Kwan Chan ... Brother Sum (as Danny Chan)
Tze Chung Lam ... Bone (Sing's Sidekick) (as Lam Tze Chung)
Siu-Lung Leung ... The Beast
Qiu Yuen ... Landlady
Kai Man Tin ... Axe Gang Advisor
Kang Xi Jia Kang Xi Jia ... Harpist #1
Hark-On Fung ... Harpist #2
Shengyi Huang ... Fong
Suet Lam ... Axe Gang Vice General
Cheung-Yan Yuen ... Beggar (as Cheng Yan Yuen)
Chi Ling Chiu ... Tailor
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Storyline

Set in Canton, China in the 1940s, the story revolves in a town ruled by the Axe Gang, Sing who desperately wants to become a member. He stumbles into a slum ruled by eccentric landlords who turns out to be the greatest kung-fu masters in disguise. Sing's actions eventually cause the Axe Gang and the slumlords to engage in an explosive kung-fu battle. Only one side will win and only one hero will emerge as the greatest kung-fu master of all. Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

So many gangsters...so little time. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sequences of strong stylized action and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Hong Kong | China

Language:

Cantonese | Mandarin

Release Date:

22 April 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Kung Fu Hustle See more »

Filming Locations:

Shanghai, China

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,188,968 (Hong Kong), 24 December 2004, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$269,225, 10 April 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$17,108,591

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$101,434,304
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The axe gang resembles a similar gang that appeared in The Legend of Drunken Master (1994), although in that film the axe gang played a minor role. Both gangs feature similar clothing, weapons, and tendencies to fight in large numbers. See more »

Goofs

When Brother Sum is about set the children on fire, he throws the lighter and it falls near his feet. In the next shot, it flies dramatically through the air above the children's heads. See more »

Quotes

Barber: Why don't you train us to be top fighters... and we'll avenge them!
Landlady: Becoming a top fighter takes time, unless you're a natural-born kung-fu genius, and they're 1 in a million.
Barber: [Does martial arts routine] It's obvious I'm the one.
Landlady: [immediately punches him in the face] Don't think so.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was slightly cut/altered in mainland China to satisfy the local censors (these changes were carried over to the U.S. release):
  • After the scene where the landlady knocks the landlord out the window onto the ground, the original version shows a bit of blood flowing out from under the landlord's face after the plant smashes his head. The mainland version removes the blood.
  • Sing's failed attempt in intimidating a Pig Sty village farmer, who punches him square in the stomach. The original version shows Sing spitting out blood, which ends up appearing on the farmer's face after Sing asks her what she does. The mainland version digitally removes both the blood being spit out (but blood is still seen around his mouth, implying it was "coming up") as well as the blood splats on the farmer's face.
  • During the night scene right before the attack from the musicians there is a long take showing what most of the residents of Pig Sty are doing, including someone crouching on the ground having a "bowel movement". The original version shows a piece of paper with excrement on it implying what he was doing, while the mainland version removes the paper and its "contents", leaving the viewer confused as to why he's simply crouching down with his pants partially down.
  • When "The Beast" punches Sing in the chest in the casino, two extra shots appear in the original cut, with the first being a slow motion shot of blood spraying upward The Beast's face, and the second being another slow motion shot, this time of Sing's head flying back with blood spraying from his mouth.
  • Soon after this, Sing's face is punched into the ground by The Beast, and a slow motion shot of The Beast's bloody hand being raised from the ground is shown in the original cut. The mainland cut simply jumps from the shot of Sing's head being punched through the ground to the low angle shot of The Beast pulling his fist up.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood's Top Ten: Alive and Kicking (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Zhi Yao Wei Ni Huo Yi Tian
Composed by Liu Jie Chang
Lyrics by Lin Huang Kun
Performed by Huang Sheng Yi
Arranged by Ying-Wah Wong (as Raymond Wong)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
If you thought that the kung fu genre had nothing new to offer, think again...
9 November 2005 | by ellie-cabbitSee all my reviews

After nearly two decades of avoiding kung fu movies, a copy of this one was pressed into my hands by a very dear friend... who then extracted a promise from me that I'd take the time that night to sit and watch it. I was less than enthusiastic when I tossed it into the drive of my Athlon, but a promise is a promise, after all. Five minutes later, a nuclear strike warning in my town couldn't have torn me away from the screen, and it's been watched a dozen times since.

There's always been a certain cheesiness to Hong Kong cinema, but on rare occasions a writer or director will directly tap a nerve and somehow weave that directly into the story: 'Kung Fu Hustle' is one of those films. This piece isn't simply a 'standard' kung fu movie; it's a romance, a sweeping portrait of good-versus-evil, and a moral lesson on the use of power. The comedic bits are so well integrated into the story that it flows smoothly from one tone to another. The fight choreography is stellar, and special care was taken to make sure that every character in the piece is human. There're no 'perfect' people or places, and it somehow makes the wire fighting that appears in parts seem believable. The acting is excellent and the camera work is all rock steady.

Feeling jaded? Burdened? Wonder if it's possible for one person to make a difference? Settle in with a copy of this film, and believe...


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