n. A style of sophisticated gunplay at close quarters, originating in Hong Kong action films.
Gun fu, a portmanteau of gun and kung fu, is a fictional style of sophisticated close-quarters gunplay resembling a martial arts battle played out with firearms instead of traditional weapons. It can be seen in Hong Kong action cinema and in Western films influenced by it, and may also be described by other terms, such as bullet ballet, Gun Kata, or gymnastic gunplay.
The focus of gun fu is both style and the usage of firearms in ways that they were not designed to be used. Shooting a gun from each hand (usually paired with jumping to the side at the same time), shots from behind the back, as well as the use of guns as melee weapons are all common. Other moves can involve shotguns, submachine guns, rocket launchers, and just about anything else that can be worked into a cinematic shot. It is often mixed with hand-to-hand combat maneuvers.
"Gun fu" has become a staple factor in modern action films due to its visually appealing nature (regardless of its actual practicality in a real-life combat situation). This is a contrast to American action movies of the 1980s which focused more on heavy weaponry and outright brute-force in firearm-based combat.