Netizens give thumbs-up to gongfu flick that promotes healthy-eating message to Singaporeans

Kungfu Fighter, Hidden Sugar, a 90-second clip on the evils of sugar in New Year goodies has got more than 1 million views as of Monday evening.
Kungfu Fighter, Hidden Sugar, a 90-second clip on the evils of sugar in New Year goodies has got more than 1 million views as of Monday evening.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE
Kungfu Fighter, Hidden Sugar, a 90-second clip on the evils of sugar in New Year goodies has got more than 1 million views as of Monday evening.
Kungfu Fighter, Hidden Sugar, a 90-second clip on the evils of sugar in New Year goodies has got more than 1 million views as of Monday evening.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE

SINGAPORE - You wouldn't expect a Government-sponsored video on eating less during Chinese New Year to become a hit, but it has.

Kungfu Fighter, Hidden Sugar, a 90-second clip on the evils of sugar in New Year goodies has got more than 1 million views as of Monday evening. More than 17,000 had shared it since it was posted on the Gov.sg Facebook page on Saturday (Jan 21).

Featuring a formidable gongfu exponent and a loathesome villain who terrorises a family by adding sugar to their meal as they tuck into their reunion dinner, the public service announcement uses familiar tropes from wuxia movies.

A dash of action, a sprinkling of special effects and a touch of comedy have helped to make a distasteful message more attractive to Singaporeans.

The clip is on Facebook and YouTube, and will be aired on television this week.

Two more five-second clips with messages like "Half the Tart, Double the Huat!" and "Eat less bak kwa this Lunar New Year, and may your year be even healthier!" were posted on Monday.

The production took three months to conceptualise and produce, while shooting took two days, said a spokesman from Tribal Worldwide.

"We were inspired by kungfu classics, a staple during this festive period, and hope to deliver an action-comedy that will resonate with young people as well as the elderly. We are heartened that people can enjoy this short kungfu flick while learning some useful facts about fighting diabetes," Ms Karen Tan, senior director of the Public Communications Division at the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI), told trade magazine Campaign Brief Asia.

The Government declared war on diabetes last year - a chronic disease which affects 440,000 Singaporeans.

Netizens were impressed by the video's production values and creativity.

"The utmost best propaganda I have seen," said one.

"By far one of the best campaign films," said another.

While some were concerned about the cost of the production, others said it was worth it to spread an important message.

This is not the first time MCI has produced videos that have been well received.

Love of a Lifetime, a tearjerker that promotes the MediShield Life scheme, was released last Chinese New Year.

It was also produced by Tribal Worldwide.