Saturday, 5 May 2012

For Your Height Only

By far my favourite film about a midget Filipino James Bond!

For Y'ur Height Only (1981)
(For Your Height Only)
Action/Comedy - (Philippines)
Director: Eddie Nicart
Writer: Cora Caballes

Stars: Weng Weng, Yehlen Catral and Carmi Martin

Firstly, we need to start with a brief history lesson. During the 60s, 70s and early 80s, American Drive in Theatres and Grindhouse Cinemas were looking for the craziest and wildest films they could get their hands on! Hollywood directors and producers discovered they could film in the Philippines for a fraction of the cost, they would get new exotic locations and cheap labour. This in turn allowed them to release hundreds of films quickly and for a fraction of the cost for crazy action and horror film double bills.

We got movies about crazy vixens in jungle prisons, bloody revenge stories, gory horror flicks, violent war films and of course, Kung Fu action with midgets!

Mr. Giant has kidnapped the brilliant Dr. Van Kohler and is planning to use the Doctor's invention, the N-bomb, to hold the world hostage. The only one who can foil Mr. Giant's evil scheme is Agent 00(Weng Weng), a 3-foot-tall Filipino martial arts master, expert marksman, top-class romancer and all-around super spy. Can Agent 00 rescue Dr. Kohler before it's too late?

"The name's Weng... Weng Weng"

I saw clips for this movie while watching a documentary about Filipino exploitation films called Machete Maidens Unleashed. I knew instantly this was a film for me! But I also know this film isn't for everyone. It's one of those low budget, crazy B-Movies that you either love or hate.

For Your Height Only doesn't have the best transfer, it looks quite bad and could really do with a remaster. But what really works in this films favour is the dub, which is undoubtedly the worst dub I have ever heard! There are a whole bunch of weird accents from British to Mexican which don't match any of the characters and the dialogue is terrible. Some of the classic lines you will hear are "The forces of good are our sworn enemy, and I repeat, they must be exterminated. And I mean lethally!" and the love interest comparing Weng Weng to a potato... in an affectionate way!

Weng Weng makes this film brilliant! He actually has star power which will leave you wanting to see the rest of his filmography. His Kung Fu skills are actually pretty decent! He was said to have studied many styles of Martial Arts including Jeet Kune Do! The fights scenes play out well, although not on par with classic Hong Kong Jackie Chan films, but very good for a B-Movie. Weng is known as the shortest ever lead in an action film standing at  2'9".

Midget Jet pack!

For Your Height Only is obviously a Bond rip off and it has all the classic ingredients! He's a womaniser, kissing every girl he can. He has plenty of gun shoot outs, some of which are actually pretty exciting! And of course, the gadgets! An Anti-Poison Ring which changes color when it is placed in proximity to poison. A deadly Remote-Control Hat which also had a blade edge. A Quick-Assembly, Small-Scale Machine Gun. And of course for the big finale, a Tiny Jet pack, Wow!

This was one of the films that propelled Weng Weng into super stardom and he went on to star in 11 feature films. Including an Agent 00 sequel called "The Impossible Kid" and a western called "D'Wild Wild Weng". Unfortunately, roles for Weng Weng dried up in the late 80s and according to some sources he started drinking heavily, he sadly passed away in 1992 from a heart attack at the young age of 34.

You will know straight away from watching this trailer if you will like this film or not! Hopefully you will, and I would also recommend the sequel The Impossible Kid which is also just as good!


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