Ever since Tekken and his cameo appearance in The Protector aka tom yum goong I have been keen to see more of Jon Foo and then I discovered Bangkok Revenge also known as ‘Rebirth’. It is filmed in Thailand so I immediately thought low budget but lets be optimistic Ong Bak was a fairly low budget film but that meant they couldn’t spoil the action scenes with too much C.G.I.
Sadly this movies fight/action scenes were not as good as Ong Bak (not many movies are) but in the same breath they were really not that bad either, Jon is certainly not lacking in that department. For those of you who are pressed for time and want the short review- bad story line with cool fights. He is trained in Wushu but he throws the knees and elbows just like a Muay Thai veteran. Don’t believe me about the fight scenes? Scroll down the page and watch the HD movie clips below….
So the initial idea of the story was slightly unrealistic but quite exciting I thought, guy with no emotions (no fear,no remorse etc.) who is a highly trained martial artist goes seeking justice and kicking some serious ass along the way. But unfortunately I feel as though the writers didn’t do this idea any justice.
How he lost all emotions, the movie starts off with him as a 10 year old boy and after witnessing his parents get killed he unmasked one of the assassins so he cops a bullet to the head at point blank range and miraculously survives (yeah ok, that could happen :P) later at the hospital one of the nurses get wind of the fact the killers are going to come back to finish the job she takes him away to her village to be healed and trained by her uncle the natural doctor/Muay Thai master.
Oh and the assassin gives his contact details to another nurse and asked him to contact her if the boy returns and she does just that, 10 years later when he does to return to the hospital after being in the village all that time,cmon! As well as the story plots that seemed unfinished- its almost as if the writer was stoned and he kept jumping from idea to idea without finishing any of them and forgetting he even started them. The Thai people speaking broken English to one another was comical and there was a sex scene in the movie that was just downright weird.
What I did like about the story line was Manit’s (Jonathan Foo) bad ass attitude I guess that would be the lack of emotions, he also seemed like a bit of a smart ass at times, one scene in particular is just after he finished flogging a few bad guys he takes their guns and runs into a group of Muay Thai fighters throws down the guns makes a smart ass remark about their shorts and then proceeds to fight them in one of the most original and creative fight scenes that I have seen in a martial arts film.
While this is definitely not one of the best martial arts flicks it still is worth watching just for the wicked fight scenes and the for the comical factor of the story, in an interview in the Philippines Jon him self even implied the story line was a bit of a joke. I have read a few reviews stating that Foo’s acting in bangkok revenge was not the best but in his defense the character was supposed to be emotionless right. So this film is probably not worth adding to your collection but worth renting…