I recently bought a book called “Action Movie Freak” written by Katrina Hill. The book is a celebration and homage to all things action and included with the book was a DVD featuring a movie called The Impossible Kid, which is a Filipino spy-movie spoof of sorts. Spoof might be the wrong word, because it’s played perfectly straight. No tongue-in-cheek nods to the audience. So “James Bond rip-off” might be a better description.
It is actually the second installment in what was supposed to be a trilogy, but the third movie was never made. The first one, For Y’Ur Height Only (1981), was a huge success which is, of course, why a second one was quickly made.
I’d never heard of, let alone seen, either movie, so it was with a slight anticipatory tremble of the hand that I loaded the disc into the player. What followed was an hour and roughly twenty minutes of “What the hell am I watching?”
Agent 00 (from the first movie, For Y’Ur Height Only) is The Impossible Kid. He works for the Manila branch of Interpol. He’s assigned a case where wealthy businessmen are being kidnapped by some sort of terrorist group and held for ransom. The leader of this group, complete with hood and cape, sends his demands on videotape, which self-destructs after it’s been viewed, taking the whole TV-set with it in the process.
You’d think that when the next tape arrives, they would at least consider, “Hmm… maybe we should have a little distance between the TV and the VCR, so as not to wreck another set? I mean, just in case!” But, no… that thought never enters anyone’s mind. Apart from mine, apparently!
Well, it turns out that, despite ransoms being paid, some of the businessmen still turn up dead. Interpol and Agent 00 suspects that foul play is involved and that maybe some of the businessmen are working together with the terrorist group to get rid of their competitors.
Agent 00 sets out to learn the secret identity of the leader known only as Cobra, and that’s about it really… at least plot-wise! And I’m not even 100% sure of that either, because it’s all very confusing and non-existent. It’s basically a bunch of action-scenes strung together with a lot of badly dubbed exposition that really makes no sense at all!
What sets it apart from other movies of this kind and made me want to see it in the first place, is our main character, Agent 00. He’s played by Weng Weng, a Filipino actor and skilled martial artist, who was only 2 feet 9 inches tall!! He’s actually listed as the shortest adult actor in a leading role!
He was born as Ernesto De La Cruz in 1957, with a medical condition known as primordial dwarfism. I’m not going to go too deeply into that, but it’s apparently very rare and it differs from other forms of dwarfism in that all of the bones and organs of the body are proportionally smaller than an average person. This basically means that you look like everybody else, only much, much smaller.
It was his martial arts skills that made an instructor introduce him to the head of the production company, Liliw Productions, who saw some potential in Weng Weng. He was cast in very small roles in a couple of different sci-fi and martial arts movies until his first “big budget” role in a movie called The Quick Brown Fox.
This led to his first and most famous leading role, namely that of Agent 00, in For Y’Ur Height Only. That one was, as I mentioned earlier, a huge success and Weng Weng quickly became a household name in the Philippines. Later on, he starred in more secret agent movies and also a couple of westerns. Yeah, go figure!
By the end of the 80’s, roles became less frequent, unfortunately, and he disappeared from the movie-scene all together. He passed away in 1992 at the young age of 34.
Information concerning his movie career is a bit hazy and is hard to come by, but he’s probably appeared in a lot more than is listed on IMDb.
The Impossible Kid is, from what I understand, not as good as its predecessor, which kind of makes me want to seek that one out and see for myself. But in both of them, Agent 00 wears a white/beige suit and is quite the ladies man.
Yup, they just can’t resist him!
Maybe it’s because he kicks a lot of bad-guy ass, or rather groin as it were, because there sure is a lot of that in the movie. It has to do with his height, I suppose.
Or maybe it’s his smooth voice the ladies fall for, and let me tell you… the dubbing of that is absolutely hilarious, because it does not fit him AT ALL!! Not that he talks a lot anyway, but couldn’t they have dubbed him by someone a little more fitting? Fortunately, he’s a man of few words and is mostly quiet during the movie.
He also drives around on a tiny, tiny yellow motorcycle, which actually looks kind of cool! However, the sound department didn’t do a very good job with it. Who’s idea was it to make it sound like a little wind-up toy? He DOES jump over a small ravine with it though!
The music in The Impossible Kid is nothing special, the only thing standing out is the use of the theme from The Pink Panther by Henry Mancini… or at least a variation of it, so they didn’t have to pay royalties for it, I suppose.
So, is it a good movie then? Well, it has its moments, but no, it isn’t! It’s not entirely bad either. You kind of have to take it for what it is… an interesting and slightly entertaining little secret agent movie, that actually put a smile on my face!
So there you have it. My movie-pick for this week… The Impossible Kid. Have any of you seen, or even heard about it? If you have… Holy Crap, please tell me your thoughts because I would love to hear them!
Until next week, my friends…