Last year I was asked by the editor of Lunchmeat VHS if I was interested in contributing an interview to their zine. They wanted me to speak with Tim Everitt, the director of the notorious lost martial arts film FURIOUS. Until recently, it had only been available on VHS and very hard to come by. I agreed to do the interview but I needed to see the film first. I had only heard stories about how bizarre and fantastic the film was so I set out to see it for myself. When it did finally land on my personal screen, I sat there with eyes glued, mouth wide open, and drool dripping from my chin. I wasn’t prepared for the greatness of what I was finally witnessing, a film so unique, I guarantee you will never see anything else like it, anywhere, ever.
This is usually the part of the review where I give a summary of the film so you can get an idea of what the story may be. Sorry, I’m not sure what to tell you there. The story basically defies any and all description which is part of the film’s charm. What I can make out, Simon (Simon Rhee) is a martial arts instructor who lives in the woods with the group of children he’s training. After the death of his sister, he sets out to seek advice from Master Chan (Philip Rhee) when he’s given a medallion. While seeking out the meaning of the medallion, he learns there are more and when they’re brought together they open a doorway to the astral plane, giving the holder ultimate power. His quest for revenge turns into a battle of power across the astral plane, or something like that, I think.
The best way to describe the experience of watching FURIOUS is to say it’s dream-like. If you were to have a crazy, bizarre, martial arts dream, I’m pretty sure it would be close to living this film. The great thing about it is watching Simon and Philip Rhee in action. These two brothers are amazing martial artists and the action was done rather well. The rest of the film defies all logic and delivers some of the most bizarre, surreal, and hysterical moments ever captured on film. The editing plays a huge part in why everything works so well. There’s a load of these rapid fire edits that at first leaves you wondering what the hell is going on but the confusion soon leads to laughter. Then there are all the bizarre moments like the restaurant scene, the guy who can shoot chickens out of his fingers, the talking pig, and so much more. Maybe this film could be considered so bad it’s good, I like to think it’s brilliant beyond human conprehension. Tim Everitt and his crew set out to make a film with very few resources. Almost everything they were able to shoot ended up in the picture. I originally wanted to include this film in a new column I plan on starting soon, one to shine a light on films that I felt were great but seem to have been forgotten, but since the film has just been made available in digital formats, I don’t think it will be forgotten anytime soon. FURIOUS isn’t a film that will be remembered for being bad or good, people will remember the experience of seeing it for the first time, quoting it with friends after multiple viewing, and the feeling of pure cinematic bliss the film brought them.