Jon, Casey, Jim (a friend and my chiropractor) and I went to see Balls of Fury this last weekend. Two words:
I'm a sucker for Christopher Walken. I can watch anything with him in it. Well, almost anything. I still refuse to watch Kangaroo Jack. Walken could have sold the movie to me on his merit alone, but the other scenes in the trailers looked funny too.
They were. And then some.
I was laughing through nearly the entire movie. Walken does not disappoint. First, we get Robert DeNiro playing a gay sky pirate in Stardust (GOSEEIT!) and now Walken playing a gay warlord with a passion for the Orient and as the Chinese say, Ping Pong. Directed by Ben Garant, of The State, Viva Variety, and Reno 911 fame, there were plenty of familiar faces in the cast, such as Thomas Lennon, playing the ball-busting Olympic champion from Germany, and Kerry Kenney, playing a Reno showgirl looking unsurprisingly like Wiegel under cover as a Reno showgirl.
For my money, no one curses in Chinese better than James Hong. I leaned over to Jon during his first scene and made the comment that losing Hong would be the end of a Hollywood institution. Who else is going to play the old Chinese dude? Speaking of Chinese (okay, it's a stretch, she's part-Vietnamese, but she plays Chinese in the movie!) Maggie Q looked stunning throughout the movie and had her share of funny scenes.
Our main man, Dan Fogler, is new to me, but man can he take a nutshot, repeatedly, much to my amusement. Way to take a few for the team, Fogler! His handler, however, made me sad. I believe George Lopez has real comedy potential, if he would just stop letting them pigeon-hole him into the tired stereotype. As a Latino actor in a comedy, he had literally two choices for a line once he starts firing a machine gun. I bet you can guess them before you read them:
Say hello to my lil' fren'!
You wanna play rough? Le's play rough!
Ohhh, which one did he pick? The suspense is all suspenseful! Who cares! C'mon! The Scarface references were old in the 80's, can we just let them rest now?
So I admit, I went in to the movie expecting to be mildly entertained by Walken's antics and came out saying, "That could very well be the best movie about Ping Pong I've ever seen." Of course, Jim countered by saying, "It could also be the worst." Touche. It was extremely funny, though. Funny in a stupid way, but I'm delightfully low-brow, so it works for me. I'll definitely pick this up on DVD for repeated viewings as well.
I give Balls of Fury five out of five painful nut shots on a scale I just made up that doesn't mean anything. Hah! You thought I was going for the obvious five balls out of five balls, didn't you! You can't predict me, I'm all-um-unpredictable.