Review: Fudged or not, ‘Kung Fu Elliot’ is amusing take on a big dream

‘Kung Fu Elliot’
A still from the film “Kung Fu Elliot.”

The already murky parameters of contemporary reality filmmaking are further fudged in “Kung Fu Elliot,” an entertaining documentary following two years in the life of an idealistic amateur filmmaker intent on becoming Canada’s first action hero.

With a pair of Ed Wood-type productions under his belt, self-proclaimed karate champion Elliot Scott is convinced his latest micro-budgeted epic, “Blood Fight,” will make him the Chuck Norris of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

His considerably older, world-weary girlfriend, Linda Lum, doesn’t exactly buy into the dream, but she’s there to lend the financial and organizational support necessary to help keep it alive, to a point.

Well before that point arrives, when the affably goofy portrait takes a decidedly darker turn, one begins to suspect that directors Matthew Bauckman and Jaret Belliveau, just like their subject, might have been playing fast and loose with the truth.


As presented, even the sweetly delusional Scott, with his heavy Canadian accent and doughy face, would have made for such a terrific “SCTV” character that it’s hard to completely accept that he’s the real deal.

But whether the con is truly on or the filmmakers have simply taken an awful lot of poetic license where the post-Michael Moore documentary format is concerned, moviegoers certainly have less amusing ways to be bamboozled.

“Kung Fu Elliot.”

No MPAA rating.


Running time: 1 hour, 28 minutes.

Playing: Arena Cinema, Hollywood.

Also on VOD.

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