|Thai Film (2009)||Director: Rashane Limtrakul|
|Genre: Action||My Score: 8/10 ★★★★☆|
|Summary: A woman is kidnapped for human trafficking, but is saved just in time by vigilantes. After seeing them fight, she demands to be trained as well.|
|Cast: JeeJa Yanin, Kazu Patrick Tang, Nui Saendaeng, Sompong Leartvimolkasame, and Boonprasert Salangam|
Review: If you like fight movies like Mortal Kombat or maybe Double Dragon, then you’ll probably like this one. Heck, if you just really like fight scenes, you’ll like this one!
At first, I didn’t know what to think of this movie. At the beginning, I think I was expecting something with more story. The intro… well, as a woman, I thought it was strange, to say the least. It kept showing women hanging out with guys and then suddenly disappearing from right in front of them. Then, the beginning after that, with the abrupt fight while the band was playing, I thought it was going to be a kind of cheesy movie.
Soon I caught on that it was more about fight scenes than story, and I ended up really enjoying it. The fighting style was flashy and fun (dance style), but at the same time, it was realistic enough for anybody to enjoy. Just keep in mind it’s not a super serious movie and there is some slapstick in the beginning, (à la Jackie Chan). My husband is into martial arts and has recently been complaining about the “showy-without-substance” fight scenes in most movies. He loved this one. After watching it, he concluded that either the actors had actually been in martial arts, or the choreographer, (Panna Rittikrai), was just really awesome. It’s probably a combination of both, as Jeeja is actually a 3rd degree blackbelt in Taekwondo. I’m not sure about the other actors, but I think there’s a strong chance that they are martial artists too.
The music went along really well with the scenes; especially during fights; really catchy with a nice unique beat. They even played boss-fighting music when the time came to fight the toughest enemy, (think video games, haha).
I enjoyed the scenery as well. There were some interesting gritty sets, like the dusty cavern-type hideout of the villians. On the other hand, there were also really beautiful ones, like the airy hangout near the beach and the female lead’s room, which was full of rich red colors and candles.
Story-wise, well, like I said, it was more about fighting than actual story. That being said, it was at least more original than usual. At first, it seemed like a simple women-trafficking story. However, when the reason they were kidnapping women was revealed, my husband and I were fairly impressed.
I like how, because it was about women being victimized, they kept a balance of strong women in the movie. Although the majority were men, the main oppressor was female, and the main savior was also female. This showed that men aren’t always the ones hurting women, and that women don’t always need men to save them. Also, even though there is some violence towards women by men who are the “good guys,” it’s always done because they see women as equals and not because they’re just trying to control or suppress them, (at least, that’s my perspective anyway).
There’s one complaint I have about this movie…
It was the way one of the guys died though. All through the movie, we saw how acrobatic he was. He could climb up things and swing around like a monkey. In his death scene, he was hanging by the female lead’s hand. Don’t tell me he couldn’t have used his aerobatics to get back up on the rope bridge! But he didn’t even try. He just gave up.
Maybe he was too tired at that point. Or maybe he knew the only way the girl could get stronger was if she was sadder, (however, if that were true, he could’ve just staged his death).
I don’t know. I think it would’ve been a lot better if he had tried to get up, but couldn’t. That way we’d know for sure he was just too worn out to do what he usually does.