Balls of Fury Robert Ben Garant

Balls of Fury Robert Ben Garant

Essentially a table tennis comedy filmed as a martial arts movie, Balls of Fury is a great concept given life by a superb cast that includes George Lopez, Maggie Q, Jason Scott Lee, James Hong and Christopher Walken. However, the critical and public reception was less than enthusiastic and so it tanked at the box office. While nowhere near as good as it appears on paper, it’s not nearly as bad as the critics would have you believe either. Walken is hilarious, as always, as Feng, the head of a Chinese Triad, with an intense interest in table tennis, but unfortunately this reveal is nowhere near as funny as it could be thanks to the pre-release promotions. The least experienced member of the cast, Dan Fogler stars as ping-pong phenom Randy Daytona, who loses his father and his career when he is defeated in an important Olympic match as a child prodigy. Twenty years later, Daytona ekes out a living as a not-so-successful novelty act until failing FBI Agent Ernie Rodriguez (Lopez) recruits him to infiltrate the ping-pong underworld and win an invitation to the elite table tennis tournament organised by Feng, the very man responsible for the death of Daytona’s father. It’s a pretty flimsy premise and, make no mistake, Balls of Fury is just another dumb comedy, but when approached as such it certainly delivers enough laughs to make it worthwhile watching. Light on extras, the deleted scenes, alternate ending and main featurette "Balls Out: The Making of Balls of Fury” are decent additions, but shorter featurette "Under the Balls: The Life of a Ball Wrangler” is cheap and cheesy. Not necessarily one for the personal library, Balls of Fury is a worthy rental for a slow night. (Alliance Atlantis)