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ONG BAK: MUAY THAI WARRIOR (2003)

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ONG BAK: MUAY THAI WARRIOR (2003)

Friday, 26 July 2013 15:25

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Written by 

The Buzz


    Another Tanked Matinee classic. In his breakout role, Tony Jaa plays Ting, a muay Thai monk in a small village with a patron god named Ong Bak, which is represented by a golden statue in a temple. A con man steals its head to sell on the black market, and Ting goes to get it back, punching everybody in the process. With brutal martial arts, really impressive free-running, and lots of eye-popping stunts, there is a lot in this movie to make it an easy recommendation. It was the movie that made the world forget about Enter the Dragon's style of chop sockey (as much as we love that movie).

 

 The Life of the Party

     Forget strings, forget the paddle ball slapping WOOCHAW sound effects, and forget weaksauce character development. THIS is a martial arts movie that stands proudly with appeal outside its genre. There is tons of explosive action, plot development, and actual nuance. This is a great example of a filmmaking team making great decisions with their money. Example: they could have done a lackluster car chase like some Jackie Chan movies tend to do, or they could make what could be argued to be the best rickshaw chase of all time. I will leave you to determine which course they picked. The parkour and choreography is acrobatic (this, it definitely has in common with Jackie Chan). It's so well done, that they actually do replays in the film for the same trick. It is silly, but demonstrates that Jaa is actually performing as opposed to it being a trick of the camera. I really don't want to ruin the jaw-dropping aspect to some of the stunts, because a lot of them are shockingly jarring. Suffice it to say, if you saw Jaa's follow up The Protectoryou know what you're in for. Cinematic, interesting, varied, talented, and lightning fast martial arts and a lot of people getting kicked through doors.

 

Potential Drawbacks

     Problems one through thirty; the fucking lead girl's voice. It is like Gilbert Gottfried the Thai woman. I like her character development and she is an important character to the story, but she sounds like Ellen Degeneres with a goddamned cold. Other than that, the plot may seem kindof stretched, but it is still well put together, thoughtful, meaningful, and engrossing. In a lot of martial arts movies, the acting sucks. Not so much in this one. That is fairly uncommon. This film doesn't have a ton of flaws unless people getting elbowed all up in the face offends you. Or you hate EXPLOSIVE RICKSHAW ACTION!!!

The Vibe: Man-Cave, Large Party, Casual Gathering


    This is the type of movie you can root for the entire way. A naive monk is forced to fight a whole bunch of self-admitted evil people in tons of interesting locations in tons of interesting ways. That is pretty cut and dried, and they run with it. The villains are very bad, and they all eventually get punched in the face. The movie gets that part right and then does a whole slurry of other ambitious choices right. Tony Jaa is really, really talented. It's a quality experience to cheer for. I guarantee your party will agree.

 

Plus/Minus


+ Explosive muay Thai!

+ Explosive parkour!

+ Explosive rickshaws!

- Holy god please girl stop talking! It feels like a screwdrive in my ear!

- Some of the special effects are actually extra-special effects. You'll know. But it won't distract you.

 

Drink when:


- The villain uses his vibrator to talk. Yep.

- A rickshaw is decommissioned

- Someone gets knocked out 

Hard mode: take a shot when Ting has a fight people bet on

 

Read 1340 times Last modified on Friday, 26 July 2013 20:25

About Us

Tanked Matinee is the place to go for good drinking movies. What do we mean by that? Simply speaking, we evaluate and recommend entertainment media based on how much fun it is to watch with friends on the sofa and a cold beer in hand.

Everyone knows "The Godfather" is a great movie, but is it as great to drink with as "Roadhouse?" We can appreciate "Citizen Kane" as a masterpiece of cinema, but is it as good a centerpiece for your party as "Santa Clause Conquers the Martians?"

Tanked Matinee appreciates film as art, but when you're kicking back on Friday night with a tall Rum & Coke, you're not looking for art, man, you want to be entertained. We're here to recommend the best movies for your night in, whether it's a big party, small get-together, or just a quiet night alone with a bottle of wine or three.

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