Review: Fists of Redemption (2019)

Sometimes, it is just what it is. No more, no less. No secret meaning. What we see and hear in the opening credits is basically what we are going to get. Logi Sigursveinsson’s Fists of Redemption is an 80s trash parody of the detective genre.

It is obvious from its faux-VHS look, sweetened power-pop soundtrack, deliberately amateurish, even trashy acting and its basic, but still at places quite nonsensical story about the detective named Bryan (Gunnar Örn) and his mission to return to his hometown of Olafsvyk in order to catch a villain. Our hero has little to no support from his commanding officer and his comically incapable partner Jack (Arnór Dathi Gunnarson) and on his course of action, he is meeting his love interest Jessica (Bríet Kristijánsdóttir) that might prove to be crucial for the rest of the story.

It is what it is and the director Logi Sigursveinsson as the driving force behind the project had to put in a lot of effort to make it be so deliciously trashy.

There was some concern that he would just recycle the stuff seen in other movies and therefore overplay his hand, but he actually had a couple of quite original ideas, like introducing the home video parts that have nothing to do with Bryan intersecting with his adventures, which can be the case with old VHS tapes. However, Sigursveinsson gets dangerously close to over-complicating stuff with the introduction of meta-level of the filming the very film later on that breaks a rhythm a bit. But nevertheless, Fists of Redemption is pure fun.

Original title: Krepptur Hnefi
Country: Iceland
Language: Icelandic
Runtime: 11’36”
Directed by: Logi Sigursveinsson
Written by: Egill Sigursveinsson, Logi Sigursveinsson
Produced by: Logi Sigursveinsson, Hekla Eglisdóttir, Karin Lárusdóttir
Cast: Gunnar Örn (Bryan), Bríet Kristijánsdóttir (Jessica), Arnór Dathi Gunnarson (Jack), Egill Sigursveinsson (Roger), Jóhann Sigutharson (Murdoch), Gunnar Bjarki Baldvinsson (the other Bryan)
Music: Egill Sigursveinsson, Logi Sigursveinsson
Production companies: Logafilms, Paesís Productions