|Those seeking thespians, need not apply!|
Let's get this out of the way up front, this is not a movie. Yes it is presented in a film format, but this is more akin to say a WWE pay-per-view. The "acting", as it were, is just to string together the various fights this movie wants to showcase. If you are looking for something with a rich storyline or deep philosophical plot, please leave now. I'll wait................
Ok, good! Everyone else ok with that, we shall move forward then. Bangkok Knockout or BKO (oh I get it like TKO, oh ironic titles, they make me laugh!) is a Thai martial arts film. What is on display here is some of the finest Martial arts Choreography I have seen in any film. These fights have a flow to them, Each match as it were displays the versatility of each actor/actress and there ability, the credits even list the discipline or style that each is trained in. Thai action has always been more about the hard hitting almost acrobatic like fighting then say the Kung Fu flicks which are smoother and "wiry". Each bout that is featured left me waiting to see how they would top it in the next, and without fail they continued to impress. The "good guys" are all clean cut and of course there is the comedic sidekick, who reminds me of Pat from Saturday Night Live and Kim Jong Il. The "bad guys" are and ensemble of freaks and bad asses, most notably a cross dresser and an homage to Jason Vorhees.
The "plot" revolves around a group of fighters/stuntmen who are auditioning for a big Hollywood picture. They succeed in winning their spot and proceed to celebrate in style, in an abandoned neighborhood? Well as it turns out while at this shindig things get out of hand and our protagonists awaken the next morning from what must have been a hell of a night. Shortly thereafter it is discovered that something foul perhaps has transpired and one of there party is kidnapped as the rest are assaulted. We come to find out that they are.............SPOILERS!!!!!! (for anyone who cares about this stuff.......really?) actually part of an elaborate game, and the big Hollywood project is actually a fight for there lives. Part Running Man, Part Condemned, Part Summerslam (Wrestlemania is too good for even this). The story does feature shady characters, a group of wealthy gamblers betting on the fights, a few twists and betrayals, but overall is utterly forgettable.
Needless to say if movies like Ong Bak, Tom Yum Goong (The Protector), Raging Phoenix are your kind of martial arts flick, then this is easy to recommend. Again you have been warned of the lack of plot, for all others Enjoy!