"Considering it's extreme-low budget, Bangkok Dangerous is worth a billion bucks."
- Mighty Peking Man
Bangkok Dangerous (2000)
Director: Pang Brothers (Oxide Pang, Danny Pang)
Writer: Pang Brothers (Oxide Pang, Danny Pang)
Producer: Nonzee Nimibutr
Cast: Pawalit Mongkolpisit, Premsinee Ratanasopha, Patharawarin Timkul, Pisek Intrakanchit, Korkiate Limpapat, Piya Boonnak
Running Time: 105 min.
Plot: A professional hitman is forced to choose between the detached, remote existence he leads as a calculating killer, and the chance he has to re-invent himself as a participant in a relationship and normal society as a whole.
Availability: This title is available at HKflix.com
WOODY'S REVIEW: I'm really drunk right now, so excuse any glaring grammatical errors. "Bangkok Dangerous" is a really awesome low-budget flick. If you were to take Chow Yun Fat out of "The Killer" and replace him with Takeshi Kaneshiro's character from "Fallen Angels", you'd have a pretty shitty movie, right? Uh, not right. That is pretty much the premise of "Bangkok Dangerous" and it kicks ass, man. And it's directed by the Pang brothers. I wonder if they are twins. If so, they should wear matching flannel suits and sing torch songs in seedy Thai nightclubs where rich American men go looking for underaged girl-boy "yum yum". Like, when they aren't directing and stuff. I notice also that one of the brother's names is Oxide. Sounds like a chemical compound or something. I wonder if that is a common thing amongst the Thai...choosing their kids names at random from a chemistry book. If that is the case, I must on principle steer clear of getting any Thai chicks...I might end up with a strapping young lad named "Sodium Chloride" or "Phosphate" or something along those lines. It would be hard to steer clear of Thai chicks, though, if they all looked like Fon, played by the oh-so-hot Premsinee Ratanasopha. She was a definite highlight.
The movie looks really nice, too, considering the extreme low-budget. There are all kinds of nifty music-video style flourishes and stuff, and yet, it still retains this gritty verite feeling. Even though in the context of a typical shoot-'em-up action movie, "Bangkok Dangerous" really gives a good feel for what Thailand is like. A really, uh, dangerous place. So yeah, "Bangkok Dangerous" is really good. And not because I'm drunk and can't stop smiling and I'm making my friends laugh. Oh, because...oh yeah, I just watched the movie. But I'm not all, like, into it, because I'm drunk because I've seen it already and it was really good. It's like, a stylish verite low-budget awesome piece of work and I respect the Pang brothers so much for having made such a kickass little movie on such a low budget even if that one dude is named after a chemical compound. I would almost go as far as to call this the "El Mariachi" of Thai cinema, but I've only seen a few Thai movies and frankly I don't want that chemical compound dude and his brother to come over here and direct, like, a "Spy Kids" sequel or anything. I'm so dizzy and I can't see and it's all blurry. What a strange feeling. It's so funny...oh my gaw... dddddddddddddddddd
WOODY'S RATING: 8/10
MIGHTY PEKING MAN'S REVIEW: Kong (Pawalit Mongkolpisit) was born a deaf-mute, but has been blessed with the natural ability to aim, shoot and kill - and he never seems to miss. He's discovered and recruited by Joe (Pisek Intrakanchit) and Aom (Patharawarin Timkul), who introduce him to the dark world of contract killing. Kong becomes one of the most deadly professional killers of his kind, but his life is about to be turned upside down - for the better AND for the worst.
One day, while experiencing a sickness after a hard day's killing, Kong walks into a local drug store where he meets a beautiful clerk named Fon (Premsinee Ratanasopha), who provides him with a remedy - not only for his illness but also for his heart. Kong instantly falls for Fon and returns to the drug store the very next day to ask her out. Despite communication issues, the two grow close, and Kong experiences things he's never felt before: warmth, joy and love.
Just as things are going well, Kong's sinister occupation gets in the way of things. Joe and Aom get on the ugly side of Bangkok's underworld. Acts of deceit, betrayal and revenge ensue, and in the middle stands Kong. Should he try and lead a normal life with Fon, or help his friends? Or maybe, it's too late for anything?
Considering it's extreme-low budget, Bangkok Dangerous is worth a billion bucks. Just like they did with The Eye (2002), The Pang Brothers (Oxide and Danny) sure bring entertainment to life. They do a good job of showing the audience what the characters are thinking, whether it's with music or with a unique choice of visuals. Although Bangkok Dangerous has shades of popular Hong Kong action flicks (mostly, John Woo's The Killer), it's style and on-the-dot direction classify it in a world of it's own. And when I say "style", I mean it. Pauses, extreme close-ups, ghost-shadows, quick-cuts, digital enhancements, film grain effects and of course, good ol' slow motion. Not to say Bangkok Dangerous is a "style over substance" film (i.e., Time and Tide), it's just one of those rare occasions where style and substance mesh perfectly.
MIGHTY PEKING MAN'S RATING: 8/10