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The Trailer Park: The Protector

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Having first witnessed Tony Jaa in Ong Bak, there is no doubt that he is the future of the martial arts film stars. We’ve had Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and Jet Li — Jaa is the next generation. This guy is simply amazing, and now we are getting another dose of his brand of excitement on the big screen.

The Protector is known as Tom yum goong in its native Thailand. My first comment is why couldn’t they have come up with a better title? The Protector is, frankly, lame. It sounds like a generic Steven Seagal vehicle. Once I’ve seen the film, I am sure I will be able to come up with something better. Secondly, it is being released by the Weinstein Company, which is probably not a good thing. The Weinsteins do not have a good track record when it comes to their treatment of Asian films. Dubbing, editing, and new soundtracks all spring to mind. I wonder how they would feel if some other company somehow got the rights to their movies and hacked them to bits? Hopefully, The Protector won’t suffer the same fate.

The trailer looks excellent. The story will probably be on the generic side, but I don’t go to a movie like this for a deep story, I go for the action. Tony Jaa is incredibly athletic and agile — the things he can do, without wires, will surely astound you.

The story follows a young Thai man who has been brought up among the ancient traditions of his people. His way of life is destroyed when they are invaded by those from the city seeking to take over. The young man takes the fight to the city, and that is where the action heats up. I eagerly look forward to seeing it.

The trailer is up at the Quicktime site. It is set to be unleashed on the big screen on September 8, 2006.

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About Draven99

  • Foywonder

    TOM YUM GOONG/THE PROTECTOR borders on being unwatchable until the final 15 minutes when the real action begins. Up until the burning temple battle the movie is as bad as any cheapo martial arts movie out of Asia in the past 15 years. Not enough action either. There is a scene early on in a warehouse where Tony Jaa tries to pay homage to RUMBLE IN THE BRONX but I don’t think it works because he looks completely out of his element trying to do Jackie Chan stuff, and because the idiocy of a violent street gang consisting of guys on skateboards with long flourescent lightbulbs was just too stupid a visual. Just destroy people with Muay Thai; it’s what Jaa does best. When he finally does so the film become worthwhile. The finale where he decimates a small army of henchmen and then battles the colossal Nathan Jones is one of the best martial arts fights sequences I’ve ever seen. Unfortunately, the rest of the movie is utter crap, the story (pretty much Onk Bak all over again only he travels to Australia to rescue his family’s elephants) is beyond bad even by kung fu movie standards, and it will probably have you thinking of that Simpsons episode where Bart got an elephant. “WHERE’S MY ELEPHANT?” should have been the name of the movie.