Kung Fu Clubhouse: Gymkata

Robert Clouse · 1985
90min · digital
  • Saturday, Jan 28, 2023, 9:30pm

What do you get when you cross karate with gymnastics? GYMKATA, a worldwide sensation that lasted a few milliseconds. But the briefest candle burns brightest.

Three-time world gymnastics champion Kurt Thomas is John Cabot, master of gymnastic martial arts (gymkata!), who has been handpicked to infiltrate the fictional country of Parmistan and play 'the Game', a challenge thrust upon every foreigner who visits the country; essentially an endurance race with obstacles while being chased by Parmistan warriors the whole time. If you win, you earn your life and are granted a wish.

Cabot must win the Game and use his wish to install a satellite monitoring station to warn the US in the event of a nuclear attack. After extensive training under a martial arts teacher, a Japanese guru, and the royal Princess Rubali of Parmistan, John Cabot is let loose to play the Game and complete the very straightforward, less-than-deadly obstacle course for the good of humanity in the midst of the Cold War.

“Some of the most preposterous fights ever captured on film ensue with a baby-faced hero who sports an aerodynamic mullet. Also, Thomas does flips as he takes on two roles in an imaginary conversation.” Mark Rahner, Seattle Times

“Now, this movie is garbage, but they get into the action quickly so as to trick us into not noticing it’s garbage. And much of the action consists of Thomas doing standing flips and running flips and basically just flipping around like an idiot. Often he just does a flip past someone and they fall over.” Jeff, Letterboxd

“If you happen across this movie, you must watch it. Gymkata stands as an example of what happens when no one offers a dissenting opinion anywhere in the filmmaking process.” -El Dangeroso, IMDb