The Foot Fist Way Review

Foot-Fist-Way-ReviewHey there! Thanks for checking out our “The Foot Fist Way” review. We’re hanging at the SXSW film festival in Austin TX right now so there isn’t a video version of the review, sorry about that.

Finding a great little movie that most people don’t know about is sort of like putting on a jacket you haven’t worn in a couple of months, only to find a $20 bill in the pock that you totally forgot was there. It’s a great feeling! Unlike the $20 situation though, you’re anxious to SHARE this new little treasure with other people. As the story goes, that’s the situation that Will Ferrell and Adam McKay found themselves in after watching “The Foot Fist Way” a while back. They thought it was so brilliant, that they put up their names and some money to get it released. Since that time, a lot has been made of how much Ferrell LOVES this movie. The trailer came out last week and we VERY good. So does the movie itself live up to this huge hype it’s getting now? Well… almost, but not quite.


Fred Simmons is a 4th degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do and owns and operates his own Martial Arts school. He fancies himself as the “King of the Demo” (doing Tae Kwon Do demonstrations). He’s sort of a red neck hillbilly/Napoleaon Dynamite/Ben Stiller from Dodgeball character… A giant ignorant dick who when all is said and done means well and has a good heart. To him, his school, and his wife mean everything. But Fred faces some inner demons after he finds out his wife has been less than faithful and they separate. Now he finds himself trying to keep his life, his school, his sanity and his loyal young students together. His one spark of joy is having the opportunity to meet his living idol… the world martial arts champion and movie star Chuck “The Truck” Wallace.


This movie promised laughs, and it gives them to you. You can understand why this film was so appealing to Will Ferrell since much of the comedy in it is similar to Ferrell’s style. Goofy, slapstick and very much off the wall. There are 5 or 6 seriously bust gut laugh moments in the movie with a whole ton of solid jokes along the way. If all you’re looking for is something to make you laugh… this film will do it enough to satisfy you.

Simmons is played by Danny McBride who is on the way up in the comedy film world. He was very good in this flick, not only at delivering the punch lines, but also making this asshole character seem somewhat likable. McBride makes you want to cheer for Simmons, and that was very important in a film like this.

The kids and adults who played Simmons student at the Tae Kwon Do school were all wonderful. I especially like the two kids in this class who go with him on the road trip.


Part of the problem in this film is that it’s very hard to cheer for Simmons, because as I mentioned at the beginning, the character is really big idiot. I didn’t feel bad or sorry for him in the least when we find out his wife cheated on him because… well… ANY woman would cheat on their husbands if they treated them the way Simmons treated his wife. McBride does do a good job at making him more human… but you can only draw so much water out of a stone. At some point you have to like the character enough to become interested in what happens to him… and I never quite got there despite McBride’s best efforts.

The movie is at it’s best when it clearly doesn’t take itself seriously. At the same time, the movie is at it’s worst when it tries a little to hard to be “legit”. Case in point, the martial arts scenes. There were HORRIBLE, but you could tell they were trying to make them look at least somewhat authentic, and they were FAILING at hit horribly. When you keep it silly, we laugh with you, when you try to make it look cool and you fail, we laugh at you.

Yes, there were a solid amount of laughs in the film no doubt, and perhaps if I didn’t have my expectations up so hugh (due to the huge comments from Ferrell about how damn funny this flick is) I would have enjoyed it more. But the reality is, the movie isn’t THAT funny. It’s good… actually it’s VERY good… but it’s not going to end up in the top 10 comedies of the year. Sometime silent or drawn out awkward scenes can be hilarious… but something they’re just drawn out and awkward… and that happens a couple of times in The Foot Fist Way.


The Foot Fist Way is a solid comedy that most people will enjoy if you go in with realistic expectations. The martial arts are horrible, the main character is no Ron Jerremy and pretty forgetable and sometimes the film tries to be something its not… but… it does what it primarily sets out to do which is to make you laugh, and on that level, it was a night well spent at the movie theater. Overall I’m going to give The Foot Fist Way a 7 out of 10.

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