Gymkata:  What if I told you that some reckless son of a bitch mixed gymnastics with karate?

If you were a producer looking to take a bite from all the martial arts action movies of the 80's, you couldn't really do it without some sort of oriental influence. Karate was kind of a big deal then on top of a layer of all the Bruce Lee flicks that were absorbed in any film about fucking people up. You couldn't really use boxing since those boil down to getting the shit kicked out of you by another dude, persevering through face punches, and some problematic bullshit with the protagonist's life. Other than that, America didn't really offer jack shit to the table in martial arts. After what could only have been the result of heavy drinking or some unholy idea from a Hollywood think tank came the brilliant idea of turning Kurt Thomas (who was a gymnastic prodigy at the time) into some sort of martial art badass. Since this is Shitty Cinema, it ended as well as you would have expected.


"I've got more gold than everyone at Def Jam, bitches."

Gymkata opens with Jonathan (Kurt) doing sick gymnastic tricks until he is approached by some silly ass government agency to participate in a “Game” in the made up land of Parmistan. The US is only interested in putting up a satellite in the country to spy the Russians and can only do that if an American wins the game. After a five-minute montage of Kurt turning his gymnastic skills in a razor sharp weapon and falling for the princess of the country, he's ready to take another fucking gold home to the land of the motherfucking free. Since Parmistan is a headed by a retarded king that looks like a bootleg Mel Brooks, the “Game” is equally retarded and plays like a mix between Calvinball and the world's lamest obstacle course. While the games are being run, the king's advisor who looks like a bootleg Kevin Sorbo is planning a coup in the country while making the princess his wife. He's a dick with some sweet Japanese sai skills and plans to make the game even more deadly (stupid) in preparation for his takeover. Jonathan is not having any of this bullshit and sets out to win what could only described as the Wacky Races of martial art movies. Through doing flips, kicking insane villagers on an improvised pommel horse, and watching his father take an arrow through the chest, he wins. Go U.S.A..


If you get past the Jonathan kicking people from a contrived placement of uneven bars in an alley and watching this asshole spin kick Lithuanian methheads on an even more contrived pommel horse, the worse part is you, the viewer, are expected to buy it. Just look at the fucking cover. Look at that shit hard. You have some dickhead dive kicking fucking ninjas. At least Megaforce had fucking dirtbikes that shot rockets. Jonathan is trying to find some excuse swing around like a monkey on meth while all characters are in awe or feel threatened by his fucking martial art mastery. To be fair, he could probably kick your ass if he was cartwheeling in a gym with the gold on the line, but no one really wants to see that in an action movie unless you’re a drunk Jackie Chan.

Totally not gay.

This movie is the classic example of producers trying to throw shit on the wall to see if it would stick. Not only did it not stick, it bounced off the wall, hit a bunch of people in the face, and smelled up the fucking room. You can’t blame Kurt from trying to cash in. Even with all his gold medals, he never got to compete in the 1980’s Olympics due to the American protest. If some cigar smoking producer came waving a briefcase full of cash for you to be an action star next to a future Playboy model, you would be stupid not to take it. He took it. Now here we are, covered in shit and wondering how the fuck this happened.