Modern action Thai movies (หนังบู๊) vary themes. It is no more the hero against a whole bunch of local gangsters. The movies deal with the Thai contemporary world (corruption, Chinese and Thai mafia, bad boys, power, gunmen).
เจาะนรก 2 ตอน ดิบกระแทกดิบ (Angel of death part 2) movie was released on a VCD manufactured by Thai company Lepso. It is coming from a VHS copy so the image is not sharp and the sound is weak. It is lasting 1h24mn. In year 2013 a Thai movie fan group has released a 1h16mn new digitized version from the movie original reels. The movie image quality is much better but the whole length was a bit cut. A man is followed up by a group of heavily armed thugs wishing to kill him. They seem invulnerable. He gets defeated and his sword is left behind in a cave. Panna (Panna Rittikrai) is a police inspector (ผู้กอง). Three thugs attack an hospital. They have big tattoos on the body. They also don't die when got shot. So Panna has to use a car to smash them. After investigation, the thugs were officially dead for one week already... In the jungle, Supree (Chat Mongkolchai) is leading a team attacked by some ruffians as Supree gave orders to warn the police regarding those invulnerable men. Some amazones are playing in a river. They are attacked but saved by Supree. Panna follows up bank robbers and defeats them again with difficulty and discovers that the robbers are dead since one month. A colleague suggest they are zombies (ผีดิบ). A legend mentions a village near the border where shamans have special powers. Panna decides to go at the border to this village. Supree's grandfather made this potion but it is now used in a wrong way. Supree and his amazones including his daughter get attacked by the zombies. Panna helps Supree's daughter. Supree is injured and captured. While fleeing the zombies in a cave, Panna finds the special sword. Only Supree knows the special herbs (ยาสมุนไพร) and refuses to disclose the secret despite being beaten by the zombies leader. The leader wishes to use the potion in a wrong way to become rich. Panna helps to release Supree. Police is coming to help and planes are bombing the ghosts. Panna defeats their leader through a final sword fight. Supree and his daughter are reunited. Panna Rittikrai’s movies are always full of action. Some fights or ideas were reused later in famous “Ong Bak” movie. It is a low cost movie with stunts jumping just after the explosions but it is still quite well done.
ปีนเกลียว 2 is a Thai movie released in year 1995. This movie is a full packed action film. It was filmed in Khon Kaen area. The movie lasts 1h32mn. Such action movies were very popular in Isan area. Such movies are coming from Panna Rittikrai's trend. Action scenes are always real such as big jars broken on heads. Wut (Krissanapong Rachata / กฤษณะพงษ์ ราชธา) kills a ruffian per accident in a factory. His colleagues are chasing him by motorbikes and pickup car. Meanwhile the factory owner lies to the police telling them that Wut is a man addicted to drugs (ยาบ้า) so being a dangerous man. The chase starts in the forest and ends up in a market (หนีไม่รอด). Despite a rampage with shot guns, ruffians fail to kill him. Finally Wut surrenders to the police, who believes he is crazy with drugs. But the factory is in fact the one selling drugs! Wut finally flees by taking a policeman (สุรินทร์ สุขศีล / พัชรวัชร์ สุขศีล) in hostage. Wut tells the policeman that the factory ruffians have killed his friend and now want to get rid of him. He frees the policeman. Ruffians decide to follow Pom, Wut's girlfriend (ธัญญาลักษณ์ ราชธา), as Wut may takes refuge with her. Wut meets his girlfriend in a discotheque but ruffians led by Tom (Jai Juntamooltree / ใจ จันทร์มูลตรี) fail to kill him (ตามฆ่ากู) inside the discotheque. Some action even takes place in a theater (โรงภาพยนตร์แก่นคำ). The policeman follows them but the girlfriend helps Wut to neutralize him. Wut asks the policeman to check the factory as he is saying the truth. In fact Wut discovered that the factory where he was a truck driver was transporting drugs. Wishing to resign, the boss ordered to kill him but he succeeded to flee. Wut wishes to surrender (มอบตัว) but Tom tries to kill him. Tom kills Wut's girlfriend. Looking for revenge, Wut does a rampage in the factory and meets the policeman there. They are chasing the leader Sia (สมภพ วงศ์ก่อ) in his factory. The movie ends up with multiple shootings and hand-to-hand combats. Sia wishes to corrupt them through money but they are looking for justice (ความยุติธรรม). Sia ends being captured by the policeman and Wut doesn't do self justice.
Pon and his friend are continually annoyed by some bad boys due to a debt. When the bad boys abducted Pon's girlfiend, a bloody confrontation happened.
It is about the life of two brothers. One is a honest guy helping poor children. The other one is a cheater, who is always stealing and betting. During a fight, the bad brother stabs a gangster, who is now seeking revenge. Problems are rising when both brothers love the same girl. The gangster kidnaps the girl. Are the two brothers going to help each other?
Thai movie มือปราบปืนโหด (Hard Gun) was released in year 1996. It lasts 1h22mn. A group of four ruffians led by พี่ Biaw (Panna Rittikrai) needs to stay in a house until the police stops looking for them following a robbery. It shall be their last job. Nom is always complaining. Police led by inspector Phitak (Jai Juntamooltree) finds them and surrounds the house. Two ruffians get shot by Phitak including Nom, who is Biaw's younger brother. Upset that Nom is dead, Biaw shots Phitak but only injures him and flees. Phitak recovers and goes back to his uncle's home (พ่อบุญธรรม). His uncle is a local policeman. The uncle, following the death of his wife, keeps drinking alcohol. He fails to save his wife used as hostage by a ruffian. Biaw still wishes to get revenge over Phitak. He goes with Tony (Tony Jaa) up to the small city to kill Phitak. Once he finds Phitak, he shots without hurting him and kidnaps the uncle's daughter, Ann. The movie ends up with art martial fightings between Tony and Phitak as Phitak tries to release Ann. Biaw is so sure that Tony cannot be defeated but Phitak succeeds. The uncle this time doesn't fail and saves his daughter threatened by Biaw. The uncle starts a new life with confidence recovered and stops drinking alcohol. There is a mix of action and humour as Phitak is also facing local ruffians in the city. There are gags reminding Baan Phi Pop movies serie and such movies were targeted for Isan area, Northeast of Thailand.
Dong (โด่ง) is released from prison. His friend Tor (ต่อ), his brother Ta (ต๊ะ) and his girlfriend Ploy are waiting for him. Ta is mute. They work in a family garage repairing cars. Ta and Dong try to become good teens now. They also try to have happy love stories but fights often happen with local gangsters. Dong loves Ploy, sister of Kong, a local gangster leader. One day Ta’s girlfriend Ying is gang raped in front of him by four men from Kong's gang and Ta cannot help. Revenge is inevitable. They storm Kong's gambling den. Following gun fight, one of the ruffians is shot dead. It turns badly (ทางที่ไม่ต้องการ). They kidnap Kong's girlfriend as protection ( ตัวประการ) and also grab a bag containing money and amphetamine drugs (ยาบ้า). Police is involved through inspector Sarawat (สารวัตร), who is wearing amazing colorful “Luk thung” clothes. The father is disappointed by his sons (ลูกชั่ว). The teens are misunderstood but they cannot turn back anymore. Kong is chasing them for the bag not for his girlfriend. Veteran actor Sorapong Chatree is playing the bad corrupted cop. He seldom plays bad guys. Veteran actor Suchao Pongwilai is playing the honest cop Vilai. It is ironic that he plays the rightful policeman this time as normally he always plays the corrupted official role. Things get out of control. Kong and the inspector try to catch them. Following a gun fight, a policeman is shot by the corrupted inspector and the teens get accused again. There is no rightful law in this modern society. There is a 2 millions baht reward to catch them. Ta is injured. Even Ying is endangered in the hospital. They help her on time and bring Ploy as nurse to take care of Ta. Ta leaves a love message for his father (ผมรักพ่อ). Surrounded by the police, they have to jump from a Bangkok bridge. Vilai starts to notice the close relationship between Kong and Sarawat. They take shelter in the Christian church in Thonburi. Kong attacks the parents’ house. The father is injured and Ta dies. Only Dong and Tor are left but Ploy prevents them to rush for revenge (ใช้่อารมณ์). Forced by Kong, Ploy refuses to leave for Hong Kong. Relations get sour between the police officer and Kong. The police officer kidnaps Kong's young brother to get a ransom. During the exchange, Dong and Ta irrupts causing a mess and gun fights between all. The movie then features 15 last minutes of intense action and bloody scenes. It ends tragically for all protagonists. The movie song is sing by Seua Thanapol (เสือ ธนพล). Due to 1997 Asian financial crisis, the movie didn’t perform as good as it should have at Thai box office (25M baht).
It is dealing about Thai people emigrating to USA. Most of them start to settle in Los Angeles in an area called "Thai town" or the Thai 77th province as many Thai people live there. A father with three children is facing issues with his restaurant. He still wants to apply Thai traditional values, but his eldest daughter is living with an American man and his son is frequenting a local gang. Only his youngest daughter still try to follow his advice. The father hires a new Thai immigrant in his restaurant. This man is a former cop who has come to put an end to criminal gang. Through confrontation with the local gang, the Thai family unifies again. Since the 1970s, "Thai town" area has been the gateway for Thai immigrants coming to Southern California. Of the 50 000 Thai residents in Los Angeles County, a good portion are believed to live around "Thai town".
After the bodyguard fails to save his father's life, a young man refuses to be protected anymore by this man. But the new bodyguard guard team is wiped out by unknown gunmen and the young man hides in a slum. Following the young man's disappearance, the bodyguard searches for him to prevent the gunmen to find him first... This movie mixes action and comedy.
Since years 2000s action movie featuring martial arts is another emerging winner. Three Tony Jaa movies, Ong Bak (2003), Tom Yum Goong (2006) and Ong Bak 2 (2008), have each of them raked in over 100 million baht at home and the same amount abroad. Those movies spearheaded the movement. Action movies featuring martial arts movies have become the icons of contemporary Thai film. Now there is a female action star like Yanin Vismistananda in 'Chocolate' and child action stars in 'Somtam' and 'Power Kids'. There is an expansion to different groups (women, children) in terms of the action movies.
"Ong Bak" is a Buddha statue located in a remote northeastern Thai village. One day, the statue head is stolen. A young man is going to Bangkok in order to get back the stolen head. He is a old style Thai boxing expert. In Bangkok, he is getting the help from a teenage girl and a fellow coming from the same village. They are facing a dangerous gang specialized in stealing old Buddhist artifacts. It raises opposition between village life (peace, slowness, culture respect, local Buddhist traditional festivals, villagers unity...) and Bangkok city life (danger, drug, prostitution, gambling, materialism, foreigners...). This movie contains art martial scenes that Hong Kong movies can envy. It grossed 120 million baht in Thailand. "Ong Bak" has been awarded the Action Asia prize at France's Deauville Asian Film Festival.
A Police team is successfully catching a ring leader selling drugs. Later on a sportmen team and the police inspector are going to a remote village in Northern Thailand to make donations (ของบริจาค). They feature demonstration of famous Thai sports (รำมวย, ตะกร้อ). The village is then attacked by mercenaries wearing a red scarf similar to Khmer Rouge soldiers. Santisuk Promsiri is playing the head of the mercenaries and excels in a bad guy role. The abbot, the headman of a tambon (กำนัน) and the village headman (ผู้ใหญ่บ้าน) are killed. All Thai authorities symbols are dead. The mercenaries take the whole village in hostage in order to negotiate the freedom for their group leader. The central power needs to help the provinces. The merciless mercenaries have a missile and threathen to launch it on Bangkok. Villagers shall decide to fight or die (ยอมตายหรือสู้). At 8 AM in the morning the villagers and sportsmen decide to rebel when listening to the King royal anthem. Everybody is fighting against the mercenaries, i.e. young, old, handicapped, men and women. The movie takes a nationalist turn and looks like a modern "Bang Rajan" as it also deals about a Thai village resistance against invaders. Similar to old 1970s action movies, the way for Thailand to survive is to protect the nation, the religion and the monarchy. Thanks to villagers collaboration and the sportmen skills, the mercenaries are defeated. With Panna Rittikrai as director, great cascades and explosions can be expected (ทำจริงเจ็บจริง). The director, Panna Rittikrai, is famous for stunt choreography. Panna released in 2004 his first big-budget studio movie called Born to Fight. He made no fewer than 50 budget movies during the past two decades. เกิดมาลุย is a remake of one of his first movies.
A young man named Kham faces an international mafia syndicate, that captures his two beloved elephants and smuggles them to Sydney. So he has to venture into Australia. He gets help from a Thai police Sergeant based in Australia and Pla, a Thai girl forced into prostitution. They face the gang of Madame Rose, whose staff include a Vietnamese thief and martial arts expert and some hulking bodyguards. The film reigned as the box office's champion when it grossed 200 million baht (second in history after Suriyothai).
Tiger Blade is like a B serie movie based on manga style. A secret police unit member called Yos is attacked by ruffians while in his home. Using his expert fighting skills, he succeeds to get rid of them. He chases the ruffians up to a disco. Police tries to arrest them but their leader Mahesak has special supernatural fightings skills thanks to sacred tattoos. Yos asks to work with young lady Duangdao. This gang of criminals with supernatural powers, led by Mahesak, releases a rebel Karen warlord Phunphan (Phongphat Wachirabanjong) out of prison. They target to steal the national treasury of Thailand in order to fund Phunphan's fight against Burmese junta. The secret police unit, led by Yost, fights the criminals in various battles. Yos and Duangdao are fighting against strong opponents. They need to use magic to defeat them so Yos succeeds to get a mysterious blade (ดาบ) from a Thai Buddhist temple. Only this blade allows getting rid of criminals protected by sacred tattoos. Various fightings happen and two main criminals are neutralized. Phunphan told Yos that Duangdao is a traitor in his team. Uten is finally the real traitor. An impressive karts chase happens in Bangkok. A bank robbery is organized by Phunphan. Finally multiple treacheries happen as the big amount of money attract many people. Yos, Duangdao and Phunphan stop the criminals and money is given back to Thailand except one bag kept by Phunphan! It is a movie fully packed with action scenes but the scenario is a bit complex to follow.
Ruffians are looking for powerful sacred amulets in Tibet. They succeed to steal them despite the opposition of a guardian lady called Purima. There are a cold and a hot amulet. In Thailand Charn is a fireman. He always tends to follow his own intuition instead of following orders from his boss. A corrupted prison guard lets the same ruffians enter a prison to free a dangerous inmate. Those ruffians use the amulets power to achieve their evil goal. Their intervention causes a fire inside the prison so firemen are called. Charn is injured by the ruffians. The inmate is a dangerous terrorist muslim that wishes to defy America. Charn realizes his body characteristics have changed following the injury he got from the ruffian using the amulets. He has now super powers. The lady guardian Purima finds Charn and explains to him how to control his powers. Charn's brother makes a Spiderman like superhero costume for him. Charn captures robbers, uncontrollable elephants, rapist, helps young beggar kid having issues with a drunken driver, college students fights. Those are many ills happening in modern Bangkok. The ruffians kidnap Charn's mother to exchange her versus the amulet but the amulet is inside Charn's body. The terrorists wish to explode an US boat containing chemical weapons as they believe Americans will use these weapons in the Middle East. They plan to blow the whole Sattahip area and they do not mind about children visiting navy boats on Children's day. Charn, his brother and Parima fight the ruffians to prevent the ship explosion. This movie is a well done movie with good fx compared to Thai standards. This martial arts action film is made by the same team, who did Ong Bak and Tom Yum Goong so it was a good candidate for movie export. Depicting muslims as the bad guys is certainly a very sensitive issue with current political situation in South of Thailand. Charn's brother is played by Nong Tum, whose real life was depicted in movie Beautiful boxer. Charn's brother (Nong Tum) is a katoey (กะเทย) with fighting skills and ironics repartees about his known condition.
Muay Thai Chaiya is set in 1970s Thailand, and follows the exploits of three friends from southern Thailand as they come to Bangkok and then take divergent paths in the difficult world of Thai boxing. Two of the friends enter the mafia world and one of the friend enters the official boxing competition world. Sooner or later, they will meet each other again...
Khaem is a temple boy (เด็กวัด) living on Phi Phi island. He is helping a monk, Luang Pu (Yodchai Meksuwan), every morning during alms. His father was killed by ruffians when he was still a kid. He is working for Uncle Fot (former Boxing champion Khaosai Galaxy). Uncle Fot has two daughters, i.e. Deuan and Dao. To make a living, Khaem and his friends are bringing tourists for daily diving sessions. During evening they organize fake Thai boxing matches to attract customers in their open bar. Khaem practises Muay Chaya style. One night, some ruffians bring troubles to them. Ruffians led by David wish to buy the bar but Deuan's father refuses. Ruffians get pushed back severely. Khaem continues his learning with a new teacher as Muay Thai is only for self-protection or to protect people under threat (คนเดือดร้อน). Finally while Khaem is away with Luang Pu, the ruffians succeed to convince the father to give away the bar by threatening his daughters. Khaem is now back and willing to take back the selling promise. David is helped by a strong fighter just released from prison. This man is the one who killed his father before.Dao is kidnapped. Final thrilling fights are happening between Khaem and the ruffians.
This movie is done by same director that realized famous movies "Ong Bak" and "Tom Yum Goong", which received international success. The main actor is a young lady who has autist problems. She has half Japanese and half Thai so she is called "Chocolate". Her Japanese father has to go back to Japan many years ago following a conflict with a Thai mafia boss. As her mother is very sick, she has to retrieve money from men who owned money to her mother. They are not willing to pay back so she has to use her incredible Thai boxing skills to convince them... The Thai mafia boss has decided to get rid of them so her Japanase father has to come back in order to confront the Thai mafia for an ultimate revenge.
Yot has been trained many years as a white monkey warrior by his master. A rival master is willing to take back some segments of a sacred book to seek absolute power. A mafia guy called Stephen and the rival master command a group of bad guys including three warriors having skills and tatoos related to crocodile, tiger and Jaguar. Those dark side warriors killed Yot's master, Yot's girlfriend and had her sister be paralysed. Yot then finds a shelter inside an up-country school teaching traditional Thai boxing for boys and traditional dance for girls. Once the three bad warriors have killed almost everybody in the school and take away the paralyzed little girl, Yot goes on rampage to fight them and get back the young girl. This movie tries to include recipes that were successful for Ong Bak 1. It includes Thainess through Thai boxing, Thai traditional dance, respect to teacher, sacred tatooes... But the main actor is not as skilled as Tony Jaa. Foreigner are really the bad guys destroying sacred altars and having no respect for teachers and ancestors. 50 years ago mothers mentioned the Chinese Zee Oui (ซีอุย) as a monster to frighten their children, now they can use the bad foreigners!
During Ayuthaya period, a teen, called Thien, following a fight with slaves merchants, is rescued by Cheu Nang. Cheu Nang is the village head of a group of warriors and fighters. Thien is the son of Lord Sihadecho, who has been assassinated by Lord Rachasena. Thien is trained to become a powerful fighter in Thai boxing and weapons handling such as sword, spike, nunchaku, rope, bomb etc... Becoming an adult, he helps to stop the former slaves merchants that held him and to release their slaves. He then succeeds to kill Lord Rachasena in his palace but when going back to Cheu Nang's village, he is attacked by score of fighters and is overcome by them. Lord Rachasena is not dead. During a final fight forced by Lord Rachasena, Thien has to compete against Cheu Nang. Ong bak 2 is not a second Opus of Ong Bak as the previous one was taking place in modern Bangkok. At the end of movie, Thien is captured and Lord Rachasena promised him a long and painful agony. Ong Bak 3 is on the way for 2010! Many incredible action scenes are involving Tony Jaa and real elephants. The 2009 Thai Films Award Best Supporting Actor for "Ong Bak 2" was for actor Sorapong Chatree.
This movie features the new Thai martial arts feminine star nicknamed Jija. Jija's mother dropped her, her music band group drops her. She feels lonely and indulges in alcohol. Then she gets kidnapped by a mafia group but is rescued on time by Salim, part of drunken martial arts expert team. Their goal is to stop the kidnapping organization. They teach her but finally drop her also as she doesn't fit into their plan. She succeeds to beat the leader and gets her place back in the team. The kidnappers are looking for specific woman scent to make perfume. She acts as a bait and gets kidnapped again. She helps Salim, who is looking for his wife captured a long time ago, and defeats the gang. The movie is having a basic scenario and mixes various ambiances (Mad Max 2, Perfume - The Story of a Murderer, Hip Hop and breakdance). It is still enjoyable thanks to Jija and her partners martial arts impressive skills. The movie boasts to be the first one introducing a new form of martial arts that combines Thai boxing with breakdancing. Viewers looking for action and martial arts skills won't be disappointed. Viewers looking for a good and original scenario may take a rain check.
Tan (แทน) is in coma state in hospital. He was severely beaten. He needed money to pay the caution for his brother Tai (ไท) to be released from prison. They are twin brothers. Pang, Tan's girlfriend, is still waiting for his hypothetical wake up. Tai is a former player of fireball basketball, which is a mix of basketball and Thai boxing. Tai wants to understand who did injure his brother. He is recruited by a boss building a new team made of Zing, Iq, Muk. A few famous veteran actors are present in this movie, i.e. Suchao Pongwilai, Kowit Wattanakul. Den is the team boss. Misunderstanding happens inside the team as it is a more of collage of individuality. Tai finds the man who crushed his brother. But revenge can only happen during an official match to avoid team disqualification. Pang will not drop Tan as he helped her a lot to pay for her studies. Matches are very violent and competition is harsh to reach the final. Iq dies during the second match. Muck tries to throw the third match away for money. He is beaten to death by the mob. Due to Pang's debts to cure his brother, Tan is forced to accept a money deal to lose the final. Tai's condition is getting critical and a lot of money is needed to pay for an operation. Pang is worried Tai will end up like Tan. During a thrilling final, Tai's team wins and the man who injured Tan is defeated. But only Zing survives during the final game. Tan wakes up at the moment Tai dies. This recent Thai action movies surfs on the Thai Muay action movies wave. The movie made 8M Baht in year 2009 and well below its 35M Baht budget.
Mr Sneed, a despising foreigner, and Dr Dachanon, head of arts performing department, are organizing a fight contest. Pod is the leader of one team called “Fighting Club” (Ao, Ed, Pom, Lerm, Ko, James). Two teams fight for a ring. The winning team will go to Hollywood. Pod's team celebrates their victory. But due to strong alcohol flooding during the celebration party, they have arguments with the waiters. They wake up with no phones, no cars, no motorized vehicles. They have been drugged. Some ruggedised cars try to smash them. Meanwhile Joy is kidnapped. Joy is Ram's daughter (Sorapong Chatree). Two men loves Joy, i.e. Pod and Pom. Kidnappers are masked and wear ninja clothes. They are led by Parina (Panna Rittikrai), an old art martial expert. In fact it is a wargame organised by Dr Dachanon to test the team and verify if they are really true friends. Mr Sneed is getting international gamblers to bet big money on the best fighters to win. It is game up to death. The action takes place in a disaffected factory. Ao and Ed win against three opponents. James and Pom move to the wrong side due to money matters. Strong group fights take place and finally the “Fighting Club” team wins. A final fight against master Parina happens. Pod's mum is held captured to influence him negatively. Anyway they defeat the master as he needs some respiratory medicine. A final epic fight happens on moving trucks. Gamblers are also punished. Panna Rittikrai trained actor Tony Jaa so fights are always intense and real. Some acrobatic jumps on motorbikes or high jumps from buildings are really impressive. The movie scenario is simple but Panna Rittikrai’s fans want to see true fights only. This movie is similar to video game concept.
Ong Bak 3 movie is a follow up of Ong Bak version 2 where Tien was defeated and captured by King Jom Rachan soldiers. Tien (Tony Jaa) is condemned to death by the King Jom Rachan (Saranyu Wongkrachang). His body is broken and beaten harshly. Insurrection is ongoing against the King Jom Rachan (พระองค์) but this latter eliminates all his opponents (Choomporn Theppitak). On the execution day, Tien is saved at last minute and sent to Ayutthaya. Bad omens are seen by the King. To try to influence the future, he sends some ninjas to kill Tien in Ayutthaya. They fail thanks to some courageous Ayutthaya soldiers. Thanks to Buddhist prayers, offerings, casting of a Buddha statue, dances and Buddhist monk's (Nirut Sirijanya) healing skills, Tien is cured. But full recovery is difficult. He considers suicide as he is almost infirmed. Through inner peace, meditation and efforts (ฝึก), he starts to recover management of his limbs. A new fighter take over the King Jom Rachan looking for power only (อำนาจ). Aware of Tien recovery, the new King sends soldiers to catch him and burns his village. Tien is wearing white clothes (purity) while the new King is wearing dark clothes (evil). Tien has no choice but to go to the King palace to defy him in order to release the villagers and his love. Following epic fights including jumping from one elephant to another or using real elephant tusks to fly, Tien defeats the evil King. As usual in Tony Jaa’s movies, actor Mum Jokmok is played a relief character. In Ong Bak 2 there was an action scene with two elephants. In Ong Bak 3, the actors were among more than 20 elephants. Tony Jaa introduces Nattayut in Ong Bak 3. It is a dharma martial art that can protect soul from bad deeds. It is a kind of meditation that can heal heart and soul.
A Korean couple (อาจารย์ Moon) was participating to Taekwondo events during Olympic games. The wife won her final but the husband failed. Twenty years have passed and they have now three kids. Two of them are now two grown up teenagers, i.e. Tayang and Tae Mi. The father Moon is having a Taekwondo school in Thailand and still trains them to excel in Taekwondo. A mysterious business man from Korea wishes to steal an old Thai blade (สมบัติของชาติ). Tayang sees the robbers and intervenes. The parents are also involved with the robbers’ driver. The blade is taken back but the robbers succeed to flee. Ruffians are looking for revenge and storm the Korean couple’s house. Tayang wishes to be a dancer and not a Taekwondo champion as requested by his father. The father failed to get a gold medal 20 years ago and wishes his son to get one. Uncle Bom (Mum Jokmok) brings the children outside Bangkok as it starts to be dangerous for them. They meet Wawa (Yanin Vismistananda), who is a Thai boxing champion (มวยไทย). Korean Taekwondo is meeting Thai boxing! Tayang flees at nighttime to join the last audition to become a dancer (dream project). While he is away, the campement is attacked. He helps on time but cannot prevent his youngest brother to be kidnapped. To get back his son, the father needs to exchange him with the precious blade to be stolen during an exhibition. Despite getting the blade, the head of the ruffians refuses to honor his promise. Final fights happen in Bangkok zoo. As often in modern Thai martial arts movies, fightings involve elephants. The movie director is Prachya Pinkaew, who directed Ong Bak. Panna Rittikrai is used again as action supervisor. The Kick (วอนโดนเตะ) was released in year 2011.
Mike Thomas arrives in Bangkok for the first time and wants to discover Thai boxing (มวยไทย) at Lumpini stadium. On the way back, he gets robbed despite strong resistance. Out of money, he needs to sell his watch to a pawnshop. He meets Yo while fleeing police due to illegal betting. Yo has an handicapped girlfriend called Toon following a car accident. He needs money to cure her. Mike is a former Thai muay boxer, who quit his own country as he killed accidentally another boxer during a fight. Mike needs to find a job so asks Yo to help him. Yo brings him to a Thai boxing ring (สนามมวย) with no rules. Yo has to participate to get money. There are hidden heavy bets behind. Mike wishes to participate and wins his first match. Suchao (Suchao Pongwilai), mafia leader, likes his style. Mike's financial value in underground betting boxing world starts to go up after a few winning fights. Mike wishes to enter the fighting fish contest in order to gain 1.3M baht and help to cure Toon. The opponent is a strong fighter called Mad Dog. Same as Siamese fighting fishes contest, the rule is that the loser is killed after the fight is over. Yo asks to join to protect Mike as it is a deadly fight. He replaces Mike and gets defeated by Mad Dog. On the verge to be executed by the mafia thugs, he fights back and flees. Unfortunately Toon is kidnapped by the mafia. Mike and Yo has to rescue Toon from the mafia led by Suchao. Following impressive fightings, the mafia and its leader are defeated by Mike and Yo but Mike dies while protecting Yo and Toon.
Kham's (Tony Jaa) elephant is stolen as he refuses to sell it. His elephant is like a brother for him as they have been together since his youth. Kham follows the robbers up to Bangkok. He finds the leader but he has already been killed through a few severe hard punches. His two daughters (including Yanin Vismistananda), believing Kham killed their father, chase him. Kham meets again the Australian policeman (Mum Jokmok) but he lets him go knowing Kham is too nice to kill somebody. The ruffian having stolen the elephant is also an organiser of illegal fights. Through Bangkok, Kham is facing the ruffians through many thrilling fightings (against bikers on rooftop, in a factory, on metro railroad tracks, in a room on fire...). The ruffian leader is in fact working with some generals coming from a small kingdom. Following a rebellion in this Kingdom, a peace truce shall be signed in Phuket, Thailand. An elephant shall be given as a peace symbol. It is in fact Kham's elephant whose tusks have been filled with explosives. Many CGI are used in Tom Yam Koong 2 movie. A huge budget was spent but the box office sales were disappointing. Only 56M baht were reaped in Thailand. Even Tony Jaa didn't join the movie promotion in Thailand as he was already involved in “Fast and Furious” sequel 7. The movie was released in many other countries such as Hong Kong. Panna Rittikrai was also involved. Prachya Pinkaew was the director. It is a 1h44mn movie with non stop action. It took two years to be released.
Some action Thai movies (หนังบู๊) deals with gunmen. Hitmen ("MEU PEUN" - มือปืน) are often used in Thailand to get rid of journalists, activists, political opponents, business partners and even family members. Many stories relate Thai wives accused of hiring hitman to get rid of their foreign husbands. Gunmen are mainly from poor areas but some policemen or military men also become gunmen. Several hundred gunmen are for hire across the country, with most of them living in Chon Buri, Phetchaburi and Uthai Thani provinces.
It is the story of two brothers. One is a heroin mafia boss, who wants his brother to study at university and supports him with the money earned from dealers. Once studies finished, the brother becomes a policeman and discovers his brother's job. What is he going to do?
It is the story of two brothers. One is a killer ("MEU PEUN" - มือปืน), who wants his brother to study at university and supports him with the money earned from murders. Once studies finished, the brother becomes a policeman and discovers his brother's job. What is he going to do? Shall he forget the gratitude ("KATANJOO" - กตัญญู) towards his brother?
Owati is a tough guy sent to prison because he hit two guys flirting with the girl he loves. He is living in Yaowarat, Bangkok Chinatown district. When he was a child, his father was killed in front of him. He is now out of prison. He has a hot temper or ใจร้อน. He is violent due to his difficult childhood. The policeman who caught him earlier is now an inspector (สารวัตร). He is helping Owati to find a job. He is also causing trouble to local mafia. They try to get rid of him without success. During a trip of the inspector abroad, Owati is involved in a fight during a Chinese temple festival. By mistake, he shot the son of a local godfather. To protect his mother against revenge, he has to shot this godfather. Owati is now employed by another godfather as a hitman. He has now a lot of money but his mother doesn't want dirty money or a new house. She wants a son that respects law. She wants to be pround of her son. She rejects him. The new godfather uses another hitman to kill the inspector but he is only injured. Bashed by his mother again, Owati kills the hitman and flees to South of Thailand. He has to come back to Bangkok as his boss tries to have him killed. He helped his girlfriend kidnaped by the godfather tough guys. Finally as his girlfriend is pregnant, he surrenders to the police and promises to be a good father when he will exit from prison. A second opus with different actors was released 4 years later.
Sia, local godfather, tries to corrupt a judge in a drugs case. As the judge refused, he gets killed (ไม่ยอมรับสินบน). Chem, his son, comes back from overseas. As the police is too slow, Chem takes his own revenge. He gets a list from his friend Thep regarding people that had issues with his father. Chem meets Kaet, a young lady, whose father is a small godfather. Chem has high interest into Kaet. Chem wishes to clean Thai society from bad people. He first check some liars pretending getting money for Buddhist temples (บริจาค). Those people harm Thai buddhism (จรทำร้ายศาสนา). Thep (รับจ้าง - คนกลาง) gets the job as middleman but Chem (มือปืน), the hitman, does the dirty job and gets paid. Chem always gives the money to a Buddhist temple. Kaet's father is threatened by Suthon, another mafiosi, who tries to force him to give his daughter as wife. The father uses Thep to find a solution to get rid of Suthon. Chem shall do the dirty job but doesn't want any money. Kaet sees him but Chem refuses to acknowledge his involvement. Kaet uses his name for a temple donation to thank him. Godfather (เจ้าพ่อ) Sunsit wants to get rid of Kaet's father. Chem refuses (ไม่ยอมรวมมือ) the job due to his personal honor code. Sunsit is unhappy that the hitman refuses the job and forces Thep to give his name by threatening his younger sister. Thep has to give up and is finally killed. Chem is shot and injured. Chen still wishes to clean society from bad people (สมควรตาย) but finally promises to Kaet to stop when Thep will be revenged. He finally punishes Sunsit and surrenders to the police to the despair of Kaet. Chem is played by actor พงษ์ศักดิ์ สวนศรี , who is more famous for his "Like" theatrical performances. (Nota: As often with Lepso Studio, the cover given with the VCD is wrong and belongs to another movie!).
Phet (เพชร), former hitman (มือปืน), receives an offer of 100 000 baht to kill one man. He shall shot Kamrung (คำรน), rich (รวย) man with a high position (ระดับ). It is the last time he wants to be involved in such killing. With his brother Porn (พล), they take care of their old father. There is a land title issue so Phet needs money. Phet shots successfully Kamrung. He sees Sophi, Kamrung's mistress, and falls for her. Kamrung's daughter Yuwadee (ยุวดี) wishes to know the truth about her father’s death. The heritage needs to be shared between Sophi and the daughter. Porn, who is a journalist, helps her to investigate on the truth but a mysterious hitman tries to kill Yuwadee. Porn is able to help and save Yuwadee. It looks like Sophi would be the main beneficiary regarding Kamrung's death. Phet visits Sophi at nighttime. Heritage decision gives the house and land to Yuwadee but Sophi can stay until Yuwadee is married. The money and jewels have disappeared from the safe. The lawyer is corrupted by Sophi. Some ruffians put pressure on the newspaper editor to push Porn to stop investigating. Sia is the leader of the ruffians linked to Sophi. Sia hires Phet to kill his brother. Phet cannot do that and finally only the editor is shot in order to scare away Porn. Porn now knows his brother is involved. Sia sends ruffians to kill Phet as he cannot be trusted anymore but they fail. Sia's ruffians now try to kill Porn to stop the investigation. While rescuing his father, Porn is ambushed (วันนี้ตายแน่) but rescued by Phet. Sophi suggests to kidnap Yuwadee to catch the two brothers. Sophi plays men vs men (lawyer, Phet, Sia) using her charms. Porn needs Phet, the hitman, to testimony as a witness in order to accuse Sia. Yuwadee kidnapping fails thanks to Porn. The two brothers finally fight when they meet. Bad people pay for their sins as Sophi is shot by Sia and Sia is shot by Phet. There is a final duel between the two brothers and their father. Phet refuses to surrender to the police (ทำผิดต้องรับผิดชอบ) and prefers to die. Sorapong Chatree seldom plays the bad guy so it is interesting to watch this small low cost budget movie with a “Brother vs Brother” scenario, i.e. the good guy vs the bad guy even if Phet is only a bad guy forced by life circumstances (น้องมือปืน).
Thai full packed action movie เพชฌฆาตดำ (Black killer) was released in year 1990. The movie lasts 1h30mn. A young lady Candy is looking for uncle Chiem (เรื่องสำคัญ). Her parents have been killed in Japan. Three Thai ninjas are looking for documents showing corporate wrongdoing so are trying to catch Candy. Thanoo (Bin Banleurit) is a hitman hired to kill people but he is still having a good heart such as helping people who borrow money (กู้เงิน) at excessive rate. He normally kills only sinful people. Two Interpol policemen (ตำรวจสกล) are also looking for the young lady. Dam (Panna Rittikrai) is the leader of a small ruffians gang. Dam's team steals Candy' s bag containing important documents. Thanoo has been hired to shoot uncle Chiem. Uncle Chiem refused to sell his land to businessmen wishing to build a factory. Thanoo was lied to kill uncle Chiem presented as a corrupted village headman (กำนันอิทธิพล). Seua Leu has been hired to kill Thanoo once he completes the job. Seua Leu and Thanoo have a duel won by Thanoo but he is severely injured. Dam accepts to give the envelope against 100 000 baht. Finally all parties meet and final fightings involve the three ninjas and their boss versus Thanoo, Dam and Interpol officers. They finally win despite injuries. Seua Leu beats Thanoo in the final duel but loses to his kindness (แพ้น้ำใจ).
Two ruffians leaders, Seua and Kachon, meet. A competition between the two mafia leaders is organized by recruiting expert hitmen (มือปืน). Various hitmen characters are depicted. An expert likes to use female make up before killing. Another expert needs to be drunk (ขี้เมา) before shooting accurately. Another one is selling sweets with his son. Another one is Han having great guns. Who will win (ใครเป็นหนึ่งคนเดียว)? Thanong (Bin Banleurit) is a former policeman who quit following a wrong shooting (เลิกวงการ). There is 10M baht for the winner. Seua wants to force Thanong to participate. The vendor finally meets the drunkard as his son is sick. He helps him. Kachon encourages six hitmen to support each other and fight against Han and Thanong as they have no chance in one to one duel. Seua kidnaps Thanong's pregnant wife to force him to participate to the hitmen contest. 100 hitmen gather for the contest including a Kathoey (กะเทย) and a glutton (กินก่อนยิ่ง) characters. Thanong warns his policeman friend Phan (Panna Rittikrai) to come to the contest with policemen. Han, knowing he was used as a toy, kills the two contest organizers. He even releases Thanong's wife but he is not interested in 10M baht. All he wants to be is to be the hitman number 1. As Thanong refuses to fight, he kills his wife to force him. Both Han and Thanong finally shoot each other. All other hitmen also die. The sweet seller with the support of the drunkard dies while protecting his son. Being a hitman is death guarantee at 99.99%. This B grade action movie is part of the numerous movies Panna Rittikrai has played in.
This is the story of a mute killer ("MEU PEUN" - มือปืน), i.e. how he becomes a killer, his impossible love story due to his bad job, the sob awareness of his job (killing good people) and his final destiny. This movie gets a Fipresci international award. In 2008, a US remake directed by Oxide Pang and Danny Pang was released. It was starring Nicolas Cage and Shahkrit Yamnarm.
Tantai, a smart hit man is hired to silence some powerful godfathers. Caught between rival Triad bosses, mercenary policemen and power hungry parliamentarians, Tantai becomes the country's most wanted target. Detective Chat is secretly watching all the event, waiting for his time to clean up the outlaws. The studio achieved limited returns from Hitman File with only 10 millions baht.
Tee Rifle is a hitman. He is shy with ladies. He likes to walk or run around Bangkok even passing by the Red Shirts barricades! As he is a hitman, he likes to wear wick to change his appearance. He has some sexual control issues with his little bird (ลูกพ่อ) when a beautiful woman touches him such as the gym dance teacher, Chris, whom he loves her secretly. He visits a doctor to get medicine but as the medicine fails and the doctor refuses to give back the money, he takes revenge over the doctor. The gym dance teacher has arguments with her father regarding green and purple clothes colors. Her father is the political leader of the Green Shirts. There is sarcastic irony and allusion from director Yuthlert Sippapak regarding the Yellow and Red Shirts fights in Thai modern politics. With Tee Rifle, the hitman symbol is demystified as he feels guilty each time (รู้สึกผิดทุกที่). Tee Rifle meets Chris in a bar and presents himself as Mark. Tee Rifle is hired for a new job. He shall shoot all the green leaders including Chris’ father. A second medicine fails to recover his little bird (ฉันไม่ใช่กะเทยแต่ผู้ชายโชคร้าย). Political leaders use violence. Win hatred with hatred. Is it the solution to political problems? Brown, purple, green political parties. All leaders are shot by Tee Rifle. The next job is to shoot Chris! The hirer is the wife of Chris' boyfriend. Chris was not aware that her boyfriend was married already! She still meets Mark at the same usual bar and a friendship starts. Tee Rifle shots Chris’ boyfriend to close the dispute! Thanks to a good friend, Chris is aware that Tee Rifle shot her father so she wishes to take revenge. Tee Rifle is recruited for a new contract. The target has rent a hotel for his birthday. Chris knowing that the hitman will act and so she enrolls herself as a coyote dancer to be able to catch him. Seeing Chris dancing lively, Tee Rifle has a control crisis and cannot execute his job. Chris now knows that Tee rifle and Mark are the same man. Following some shooting into impressive unfinished 1997 villas, Mark succeed to escape from Chris. Chris finally catches him in a Christian church. She spares his life not because of love but because Thai politicians are the real responsible. Thailand would be a better place without politicians so as a hitman, she shoots all Thai politicians leaders! This movie mixes comedy and action. It also gives a strong social message regarding politicians that are judged responsible of the current mess in Thailand (Yellow Shirts versus Red Shirts). It features a funky soundtrack. “Saturday killer” is part of a trilogy including “Sunday Killer” and “Friday Killer”.
A hitman (Nopachai Chaiyanam), called Ton, shaves his head and wears monk clothes. During the alms round ceremony, he guns down his target. He is also shot and injured by body guards. He wakes up at hospital still alive after three months. 7 years ago Ton was a former policeman and working closely with Saranyu. During a drug traffic case, Saranyu was shot. Corrupted lawyer tried to buy Ton in order to drop the drug traffic case. Ton despised evil (ความชั่ว) and refused. Ton met Soi, a gorgeous lady. After a wild night together, he woke up finding the girl's bloody body in the hotel room. He fled. It was a trick from the mafia as pictures with him and the girl were taken. Ton still refused to bend to the lawyer and was sent to jail after hurting him. The movie is going back and forth between present and past. Ton is released from hospital but following injuries he sees everything bottom up. After his injury, he is not able to kill properly, feels fed up and wishes to stop. But karma (กรรม) will not let him go... Ton was released from prison after three years. Ton was extracted from the prison and used by a mysterious doctor to be a hitman killing people with bad influence (อิทธิพล). Soi was not dead. Soi or Teewa, her real name, was waiting for him. Ton proposed to marry Teewa (ผมไม่ชอบคนดี. ตายเร็ว). Ton is finally captured by ruffians who use torture to know who orders the killings. He doesn't reveal any name and succeeds to escape. He hijacks a car going to Chumphon. A young lady called Lin (Sirin Horwang) is driving. He sympathizes with the driver. Ton takes refuge in a Buddhist temple as he feels lost in his heart and mind. Teewa has earlier died of an overdose. There is no rightful in this world (ยุติธรรม). It needs to be built by ourselves. Ton finally becomes a monk. Peace of mind doesn't last long as ruffians find him. He needs to disrobe. While fleeing from the temple, he hijacks a car with Lin inside again! It was part of a trick to make Ton lead to the mysterious doctor. During shootings, ruffians are killed and the doctor badly injured. Ton terminates the doctor as he caused Teewa to die earlier. After spending a few years again in prison, he ordains again. One day, he gets shot in the back while wandering for alms... The movie Headshot (ฝนตกขึ้นฟ้า) was selected as Thailand representative movie for Oscar submissions for the Academy Awards. In Thailand movie Headshot got four Golden Swan at the subhanahongsa Awards in 2012. Compared to his previous movies, director Pen-Ek Ratanaruang has done a movie closer to mainstream but still having his own touch. It also highlights corruption presence in Thailand.
P Uzi (Thep Po-ngam) is released from prison and injured by a blade expert (มือมีด). Dao (Ploy Jindachot) visits her dying mother Deuan (Wiyada Umarin) at the hospital. She announces to her daughter that her father is a hitman (มือปืน) just released from prison. Deuan accepted to be a hitman's wife but didn't want her daughter to be a hitman's daughter. While recovering at the hospital, P Uzi receives also a letter from the mother announcing his real paternity. Dao's stepfather (Kowit Wattanakul) tries to rape her sister Phet. P Uzi, trying to contact Dao, helps to prevent the rape by hitting strongly the stepfather but finally gets accused of the murder. Dao is a policewoman and wishes to revenge her stepfather. P Uzi's house in Chantaburi is occupied by a small man wearing same clothes as "Kill Bill" movie and acting very weirdly so he has to retreat. Ong (Choomporn Theppitak) is P Uzi's former boss. While withdrawing money from ATM machine, P Uzi is threatened by 5 gangsters with deformed face reminding of famous actor Songthong and promoting a politician who believes he can buy all Thai people (ซองเงิน) to be elected and then gets back his money through overpriced commissions during public tenders. Hitman myth is demystified in Yuthlert Sippapak’s movies. P Uzi has even vision problems. Dao arrives in Chantaburi to look for P Uzi but finally arrests the blade expert and crazy "Kill Bill". P Uzi is recruited to get rid of one corrupted politician's helper. Meng, a corrupted politician, is looking for P Uzi’s head. Reusi does an eye chirurgical operation but the doctor, friend of Meng, makes it a failure on purpose. P Uzi wishes to kill Meng. Ed Carabao is even having a small cameo role. Meng is still not dead so P Uzi continues to chase him as Meng's men have butchered his old friend Ong. Dao chases P Uzi and shoots him while he was trying to get something from his jacket. It was not a gun but a letter. At the last minute, he finally replaces the touching letter with full explanations by a laconic letter asking for funerals. Sometimes it is better not disclose the truth. Movie "Friday Killer" (2011 ~ 3M baht revenue) is part of a trilogy including "Sunday Killer" and "Saturday Killer" (2010 ~ 15M baht revenue). "Sunday Killer" was not released in 2012. Maybe due to bad revenue results of "Friday Killer"? As usual there is a great soundtrack. This Yuthlert Sippapak movie mixes action, social messages and great humor. This movie has won the best cinematography and jury awards at the Shanghai International Film Festival.
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