It took some months of waiting, but it would only be over the weekend when I would finally get to join the crowd to check out Felix Fukuyoshi’s latest kung fu comedy, Duty – Out Of Line.
Written and directed by Fukuyoshi, the short was sparsely filmed between 2019 and last summer as the cast and crew worked between their own schedules, along with the perpetual hurdles of the pandemic last year before eventually finishing last December, and enjoying a robust run at the niche festivals this year. Clocking in at ten minutes, the result is a trepidating journey through one cringe to another until the tables finally turn and our heroine wins the day.
The setup? Stunt performer Julia Schunevitsch (Wonder Woman, The Old Guard) takes on the role of special agent as she tackles gender kung fu shapes, gender norms and grating misogyny while protecting a vexatious scientist (Khoi Chau) from a nimble assassin (Fukuyoshi).
Best of all here is the fact that in pure fan service fashion, Fukuyoshi sticks to an 80s Hong Kong aesthetic that’s much ado with the standard he and his cohorts continue to live and work by to this day, which is expectant of someone whose craft dates as far back as the start of heyday German indie action troupe, YoungMasters. He and Schunevitsch also served up the choreography alongside a bevy of talented stunt and film colleagues who have been years-involved in the craft of action design and performance, so considering this, Schunevitsch is in pretty good company.
Check it out in the player below!