Maybe I should go with the Thai title, Tom Yum Ggoong 2? That's what I was thinking, but since I've always written the English titles of movies that I watched I'd better stick true to my habit!
I've been looking forward to this flick for quite a while, not least because Tony Jaa really doesn't make as many movies as I wish he did, but also because the so called female Tony Jaa, JeeJa Yanin, makes an appearance. It's the first movie they're both in, and even though she doesn't get as large a role as I wish she had, there's plenty of good fights involved. And since she at first assumes Tony Jaa killed her uncle, they get to fight each other before teaming up to fight the enemy (and at one point fight both each other and the enemy... but that doesn't work out well).
The RZA plays the bad guy, and Marrese Crump plays a big role, as well as partial stunt double for The RZA... I just found out he was a double for the RZA in The Man With The Iron Fists too! Definitely want to see more of this guy in the future, he's a great fighter.
As for the movie itself? Well Kwan lost his elephant again, and he goes to fetch it. There's some plotting against royalty involved, an underground fight club, an undercover agent, his old police buddy Mark (Petchtai Wongkamlao), a pair of unfortunate sisters with considerable skill in martial arts, plenty of misunderstandings and a plot that... really isn't messy at all. How can people call it messy? If you don't skim through the movie it's great, I didn't spot any loose ends, just a lot of crappy CGI effects.
They should've cut those out. They kill the authenticity of the other fights. When you're no longer sure what's real or not, where there are wires and where there aren't... it's just no longer the same experience. And it's even worse when you can see the wires or special effects. That's why movies like the original Ong-Bak and Protector will always be the classics, and no matter how flashy effects they add they won't be able to outshine them. Really, I'm not watching movies like this for the flashy effects, I'm watching them for down-to-earth action, real fights! Real stunts! Real shit!
This was still way better than the second and third Ong-Bak though. Maybe it didn't have as awesome stunts, but the story's not bad. It's the special effects that bring down the quality... a LOT. That said, it's definitely worth a watch though. Check it out.
rated 4/5: fo shizzle