Well, this is the first time since Hot Rod that I have been fooled. I do not know what to think of this film. The trailer was hilarious. The movie, well, it just missed being hilarious. It was funny. It just wasn’t hilarious. I was expecting to be in my chair curled up in a ball crying from laughing so hard. But….no.
The Foot Fist Way tells the story of Tae-Kwan-Do/karate instructor Fred Simmons, played by Danny McBride. His character is very reminiscent of Steve Carell’s Michael Scott from The Office. The only difference being, Carell is funny at it. It follows Fred through his mid-life crisis and cheating wife Suzie. It opens with him doing a recruiting seminar in a parking lot. This was particularly funny, but was not as funny as it should have and could have been. This set the standard for the entire movie.
As I sat down to write this, I did my usual research of character names and actors that I might have forgotten. Upon opening the link on www.imdb.com for this movie, I realized why no one looked familiar, they aren’t. I mean, Danny McBride was in that atrocity of a film Hot Rod. The only other person to do anything was Ben Best. Ben is also one of the writers, which I find odd based on his character in the film. That brings me to the only stroke of genius in this film. It is the only bit that shows that the writer was trying for a sophisticated comedic movie. Chuck “The Truck” Wallace. He is an action star and karate extraordinaire. The name is a mix of Chuck Norris and Bill “Superfoot” Wallace, both of martial arts fame. Other than that, the rest of the film is kind of flat.
When watching this film, you can see how they made this movie with a second rate cast. Many of the characters were meant for other actors. This is another case of, “if you wanted XXX, you should have paid the money for XXX.” Will Ferrell would have been a good choice for Fred Simmons, but that was not the only one.
As I reflect on this film, however, I would not say that I did not enjoy it. I was just expecting more. It has so many funny things that just did not make it to the hilarious level. Fred meets his karate idol, Chuck Wallace. He gets to party with Chuck. Then, he gets into a fight with him. The finale shows that writer/director Jody Hill has some directional vision. Verdict: Well, like with Redbelt, this film was not released wide. So, should you rent it? Sure, why not? It is funny, but the editing on the trailer was top notch. I think that I will rent it and give it another try. PS-I was the only one in my theater on a Saturday afternoon.