Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank

Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank

A hard-on-his-luck hound finds himself in a town full of cats in need of a hero to defend them from a ruthless villain's wicked plot to wipe their village off the map. With help from a reluctant mentor, our underdog must assume the role of town samurai and team up with the villagers to save the day.

  • Released: 2022-07-14
  • Runtime: 97 minutes
  • Genre: Animation, Comedy, Family
  • Stars: Michael Cera, Samuel L. Jackson, Mel Brooks, Djimon Hounsou, George Takei, Ricky Gervais, Michelle Yeoh, Gabriel Iglesias, Aasif Mandvi, Kylie Kuioka, Cathy Shim, Stephen Apostolina, Kirk Baily, Steve Blum, Ranjani Brow, William Calvert, David Chen, Miles Clark, Seth Clark, Matt Corboy, Jeff Fischer, Jason Griffith, Larry Herron, Bridget Hoffman, Rif Hutton, Ashley Lambert, Lex Lang, Terence Mathews, Tom McGrath, Scott Menville, David Michie, Rob Minkoff, Zoe Minkoff, Edie Mirman, Juan Pacheco, Michelle Ruff, Warren Sroka, Kelly Stables, Jaquita Ta'le, Arianna Trames, Floyd Van Buskirk, Kirk Wise, Matthew Wolf, Michelle Yeoh
  • Director: Rob Minkoff, Mark Koetsier, Chris Bailey, Chris Bailey
  • gabrielle-04785 - 27 March 2023
    A Samurai Disaster
    I watched this film on it's opening weekend, and I thought it was.....okay.

    There are some good moments in the film, but there are a lot of bad moments too. First off, the good moments: 1. Great animation 2. Great voice cast 3. Ika Chu is a corny but hilarious villain 4. The relationship between Hank and Jimbo is like father and son

    Now, the bad ones: 1. Some characters are either forgettable, bland, or both 2. Bad references 3. Bad jokes 4. Toilet humor doesn't work 5. BAD WRITING.

    This film could've been so much better, I wanted it to be so much better... but the writing is what made this film fall downhill (all the way down hill).
  • djordjeidb - 8 October 2022
    Excellent cartoon and entertainment for kids and grown up
    Excellent animation, story and fun. Simply you can feel spirit of old cartoon talks.

    You can feel Mel Brooks all around there, his spirit ijln almost every character with funny names and yet plot have strong lessons for kids that everyone if try to be better can be better. Its not important if you are big or small, its something that we all have in our bodies, just we need to be good in life and to give efforts to accept something or someone if he or thing is different that we expected to be.

    This is something which all families around world should watch and give a lessons to kids how it feels good when you are good person, brave and have a lot friends.
  • IonicBreezeMachine - 20 August 2022
    Blazing Saddles is remade in animation where it's played straight and with a duller edge than its live-action inspiration
    In a land of cats who live in a state similar to Feudal Japan, feudal lord Ika Chu (Ricky Gervais) seeks destroy the village of Kakamucho as he considers it an eyesore. After orchestrating a raid by bandits that scares away Kakamucho's samurai, the townspeople send a request to the Shogun (Mel Brooks) requesting another Samurai. Ika Chu is ordered by the Shogun to send a replacement samurai and decides to send Hank (Michael Cera) a bumbling dog who is scheduled for trespassing in the land to be executed as Kakamucho's new samurai. Hank having always aspired to be a samurai eagerly accepts the position as an alterative to execution, but once in Kakamucho finds its residents less than hospitable towards dogs. Now with the help of a disgraced former samurai named Jimbo (Samuel L. Jackson), Hank trains in the ways of the Samurai as Ika Chu plots the town's demise.

    Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank began life under the title of Blazing Samurai and was spearheaded by Sony Pictures Founder Yair Landau. Originally intended to be about a black samurai in Feudal era Japan with comedian Chris Rock named as a potential co-producer until eventually being retooled to having more of a "funny animal" spin. The movie was noted for its continuous stop/start production cycle with production initially announced in 2014 with a projected 2015 release date by Open Road Films, but due to issues with distribution problems, animation providers, and at one point attempts at "crowdsourcing" the animation by "paying" individuals in exposure (seriously) the movie ended up coming out 8 years after it was announced. Usually when an animated film goes through that level of production and release hell it's usually not a good sign (see Foodfight! For example). With Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank, the end result isn't a trainwreck or anything, but it's also very middle of the road and is a rehash of one of the most quoted and beloved comedies of all time.

    While Paws of Fury sidesteps the edgier aspects of the Richard Pryor co-scripted Blazing Saddles, people who are familiar with Blazing Saddles will pick up on the similarities from the first scene as the opening credits (which are very stylish) have a song titled "Blazing Samurai" in what's an obvious leftover from when this film was titled as such. However despite Paws of Fury following the same simple plot of the original film, Paws of Fury only plays maybe 40% of its scenes for parody while the remaining 60% are played for legitimate pathos so the movie exists in this weird space where it's being quite glib about storytelling tropes like montages, flashbacks, and other such forth wall breaks made by the characters, but then it also plays parts of the story for drama which seems to miss the point of the original film. While it's not unthinkable that Blazing Saddles plot could've worked played straight (especially since it was essentially a stock western plot designed as a joke machine) even taking Blazing Saddles out of the equation there's been other films that have done this sort of thing better such as the Kung Fu Panda films or even Rango which also featured an ill equipped protector of a small town. There are some things that do work in this movie however. Samuel L. Jackson voices Jimbo who's the equivalent of Gene Wilder's Jim the Waco Kid from the original, and he does bring a lot of energy to his part and gets the lion's share of the laughs from this movie. Ricky Gervais is also pretty amusing playing the equivalent of Harvey Korman's Hedley LaMarr and does get some good moments, even if he has to utter some stupid lines like a joke about a giant toilet called "The Super Bowl". The animation is okay, yes I've seen better but I've also seen far worse and considering this was finished remotely under COVD protocols it's probably better looking than it has any right to be.

    Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank survived nearly a decade of production limbo only to be met with a resounding "meh". There's nothing the movie really does wrong and I supposed if the kids have worn out their Kung Fu Panda movies this might fit the bill for entertainment, but for anyone else it's just a really mediocre film that reminds you periodically of a comedy classic with the same plot, same jokes, and mostly the same characters to the point where if you have seen Blazing Saddles there's not really much here you didn't see originally.
  • charlottejohnson-28304 - 3 August 2022
    Jokes feel horribly forced
    Disappointing. So many great names in this but the jokes feel super forced. I absolutely love the humor movies from Mel Brooks have (for everyone saying this is like Blazing Saddles for kids) but I don't agree at all.