Kung Fu Elliot
Film Review by Kam Williams
Elliot “White Lightning” Scott supposedly won 7 different kickboxing titles in Canada before deciding it was time to parlay his success into an acting career. That’s a little hard to believe given the aspiring thespian’s flabby physique and underwhelming fight and acting skills.
Nevertheless, the Halifax, Nova Scotia native’s goal was to become his country’s first, homegrown, screen action hero. Unable to interest a Hollywood studio in underwriting his assault on showbiz, he turned to his gainfully-employed fiancée, Linda Lum, to bankroll his self-made kung fu films on a modest day care center salary.
Elliot not only performed in but wrote and directed the micro-budget action adventures. He also did his own stunts and added the pictures’ special effects. Besides paying for the projects, Linda served as cameraman, editor and scored the soundtracks. She even had to chauffeur the cast and crew around since her flaky beau didn’t have a car (or a job).
If all of the above sounds like a recipe for disaster, that’s only because it was. The struggling couple’s ill-fated endeavor is humorously recounted in Kung Fu Elliot, a documentary which contrasts impatient Linda’s increasing frustrations with her delusional hubby-to-be’s selfish ambition for superstardom.
Co-directed by Matthew Bauckman and Jaret Belliveau, this spellbinding biopic revolves more around whether their strained relationship will last than whether their latest martial arts production, “Blood Fight,” has a ghost of a chance of being completed and released in theaters. For, besides exploiting Linda financially, questions eventually surface about Elliot both in terms of fidelity and the legitimacy of his kickboxing record.
A cautionary tale about how love might blind you to the actual agenda of a very slippery character.
Excellent (4 stars)
Running time: 89 minutes
Distributor: The Orchard
To see a trailer for Kung Fu Elliot, visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWN_IMZ1vvI
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