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Ong-Bak (2003)

Ong-Bak (2003)


Tony Jaa
Petchtai Wongkamlao
Pumwaree Yodkamol

Directed by Prachya Pinkaew

I have never seen Ong-Bak before, but after seeing it I have to say it is an okay movie. The cinematography was not that good and the lines were cheesy, but the action and stunts were good enough to keep me going.

It has a weird start, which made me almost not see the movie to the end, but determination from the fact that when I was in the university, this was a film everyone saw but me. In the end it was worth it and I like the way Ting (played by Tony Jaa) was not portrayed as overly naive. He was sharp and smart even though his cousin seem to want to take advantage of him at every turn.
The fights were cool to see, but then there are times when it felt like a showcase. I felt there were moves he did just to show us what he can do.
Well, if you want to see what he can do, this movie does not hold back and note, he did all his stunts.

The movie plot starts in a village in Thailand where a young man named Ting is very skilled in Muay Thai. Ting was trained to know that fighting for no just cause is wrong. We also get to meet a greedy man who wants to buy artifacts from the village. The village seems to have many artifacts which would fetch good money.
Same man returned and stole the head of a Buddha statue named Ong-Bak. This devastated the villagers, one of them saw who stole it and the information of his whereabouts in Bangkok was given to Ting as he volunteered to go get the head back.

Ting was to find his cousin who stays in Bangkok so that he could assist Ting for accommodation and the search. Unknown to the villagers Ting’s cousin Humlae has turned to a nobody, unable to pay his own way and in such gambling debts that his life was in danger.
Humlae and his friend Muay are regular scammers on the street who are in too deep for their own good.

Ting finds Humlae and gets dragged into his mess, while he still has to locate the lost statue head that was stolen.

The movie plot is not so exciting when I come to think of it, but the whole stunts were. The movie is good to watch for the stunts and the fights. As long as you can overcome the distaste of repetition when he does a cool stunt. Seeing him doing it again in different camera angles may look cool the first time, but then becomes annoying when it happens all the time.

See it if you want to see the movie that gave Tony Jaa his big break.


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