I will never forget the first time I saw the jaw dropping Ong Bak Muay Thai Warrior with the sensational Tony Jaa. It was in Toronto and Bubba (Todd over at Twitch Film) brought it by and said I just had to sit down, shut up and watch this. And watch it I did. For those of you who have never heard of this movie, you’ll just have to trust me that it is the most awe inspiring spectacle of martial arts and stunts in a movie EVER. The most amazing part of it is that Tony Jaa did all of his own stunts… with ZERO special effects and ZERO wire work. It’s totally unbelievable when you see half the stuff this guy does. You just end up re-winding a dozen times saying “I didn’t just see that!!!!”
Now, the good folks over at AICN have received an update on the follow-up entitled Tom Yum Goong. My mouth is in high drool mode:
In Ong-Bak, he plays a country bumpkin who travels to Bangkok to retrieve a stolen Buddha image. In Tom Yum Goong, he plays a country bumpkin who travels to Sydney to retrieve a stolen elephant (!!!!!!). The culprit is a femme fatale who runs an evil empire out of her Thai restaurant called, you guessed it, Tom Yum Goong, named after the famous shrimp soup.
From what i gather, it should be ready to release around January in Thailand. With the director claiming to make this a Thai film with an international standaqrd and promisisng to raise it to the next level, I can hardly wait for the action to explode once more on the big screen. They also promise to continue to uphold the Ong-Bak motto of no stuntman, no wirework for the lead actor.
This guy is the evolution of Jackie Chan. Now, take all this with the grain of salt that Ong Bak was actually a horrible film from a story/acting/plot point of view. But the pure action, stunts and martial arts make up for all that in spades and creates a thoroughly enjoying viewing experience. Oh man I can’t wait.