December 9, 2006

The Trailer Park: Balls of Fury

Ever heard of Dan Fogler? No? Me neither. He is a comedian of stage and screen, even winning a Tony in 2oo4 for Best Featured Actor (Musical) for his performance in "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee." He has also been seen recently in the Billy Bob Thornton/Jon Heder comedy School for Scoundrels. This is his first shot at top billing a comedy, and I am not convinced that it is going to be a hit. Frankly it looks kind of dumb, but perhaps it will be a brilliant kind of dumb that doesn't translate well to the trailer format.

Balls of Fury is the story of underground, duel to the death, ping pong tournaments. Dan Fogler is Randy Daytona, a ping pong champion recruited by the government to infilitrate the tournament in order to gain information on the man running the show, Feng. The setup sounds suspiciously like an alteration on Enter the Dragon, the Bruce Lee classic which had him infiltrating a crime lord's hideout under the guise of entering a top secret martial arts competition.

Does it look funny? Sure, do I think it will be good? No. When I watch the trailer, all I can hope for is dumb fun, and that is all I think it is setting out to accomplish. The trailer sets up the story and shows many a comical ping pong action scenes pitting Fontana against a variety of characters. The opposition ranges fron nuns, to little girls, to geeks, to siamese twins, to large muscle bound men. All I can really say is take a look at the trailer and make up your own mind, you will definitely have some kind of reaction to it.

The cast is peppered with recognizable faces. Christopher Walken plays the evil mastermind, Feng, and seems to be someone who will do just about any script handed to him, yet still seems to make it work. Also appearing are George Lopez, Maggie Q (M:I:III), Patton Oswalt (The King of Queens), Diedrich Bader (Office Space), Masi Oka (Heroes), James Hong (Seinfeld, Hero), Aisha Tyler (Ghost Whisperer), Cary Tagawa (Memoirs of a Geisha), Jason Scott Lee (Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story), and Terry Crews (Everybody Hates Chris). It was directed and co-written by Reno: 911!'s own Ben Garant, better known as Deputy Travis Junior.

Here is the synopsis from Rogue Pictures:

An outrageous new comedy. In this secret society, the competition is brutal
and the stakes are high. It is the unsanctioned, underground, and utterly
unhinged world of clandestine Ping-Pong tournaments. Down-and-out former
professional Ping-Pong phenom Randy Daytona (Dan Fogler) is sucked into this
maelstrom when FBI Agent Rodriguez (George Lopez) recruits him for a secret
mission. Randy is determined to bounce back and win, and to smoke out his
father’s killer – arch-fiend Feng (Christopher Walken).

Currently, Balls of Fury is slated for a release in April 2007. Until then, watch the trailer and take a look at the pictures below to whet your appetite for little white balls.


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