Chocolate (2008) - News Poster



The Top 5 Best Thai Martial Arts Films Ever. Do You Agree?

In order to be a great martial art film, a movie just has to follow one rule: keep audiences entertained. Those films produced in Thailand manage to do just that, earning the praise of being home to some of the best martial arts movies. The films may lack a serious story-line, but the incredible choreography more than makes up for it all.

Narrowing down the movies to find the best is no easy task, but we came up with what we feel are the top five best Thai martial arts films. Each movie in our list features the enchanting choreography from the late famed director and martial artist Panna Rittikrai. His films used no CGI to show off each actor’s athletic prowess.

Born to Fight (2004)

This remake of the 1986 film bears little resemblance to it beyond a title. Nevertheless, it is just as action-packed and entertaining. It follows Deaw,
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Mulan: can it work as a live-action movie?

Katie Smith-Wong May 31, 2017

With plans afoot for a live action take on Mulan, we look at the challenges facing Disney...

After more than 50 years of making animated features, Disney have now turned their attention to live-action adaptations of their famous films. After releases such as 101 Dalmatians (1996), Maleficent (2014) and Cinderella (2015), the studio's new creative direction has earned critical acclaim and financial success. It is also making its mark on the global box office, as the recently released Beauty And The Beast remake has earned small change in the region of $1.2bn and counting.

Among the upcoming remakes planned is Mulan, which already has fans of the 1998 Disney film debating about its faithfulness to the animated feature. That's especially so given reports about director Niki Caro's indecisiveness regarding the inclusion of songs such as Honour To Us All and I'll Make A Man Out Of You, as well as the
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Cine-Sunday: ‘Raging Phoenix’ Review

Stars: Jija Yanin, David Bueno, Marc Nghi Hoang | Written by Sompope Vejchapipat | Directed by Rashane Limtrakul

Deu, a rock and roll drummer abandoned by her family and recently sacked from her band, finds herself being pursued by a gang of kidnappers. She is rescued from their clutches by Sanim, a master of an obscure drunken fighting technique known as Meyraiyuth. After informing Deu that she is the target of the Jaguar Gang, a group of criminals who kidnap young women and extract their pheromones to sell as a potent aphrodisiac on the black market, Sanim and his three sidekicks – Pigshit, Dogshit and Bullshit – agree to train her in their unique methods of combat. Her training complete, Deu insists on joining Sanim and the others in infiltrating the Jaguar Gang’s underground lair and bringing down their lucrative and exploitative people trafficking empire. Their mission brings them face to face with
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10 essential martial arts heroines

Craig Lines Feb 9, 2017

Cynthia Rothrock, Michelle Yeoh, Maggie Cheung and more feature, as we salute the female stars of martial arts movies...

It’s arguably a rare sight when female characters lead a major genre film, and last year’s online Ghostbusters drama proves it’s still, depressingly, a controversial choice if they do. Too often, female characters are reduced to sidekicks, damsels, sex objects and caricatures. It sometimes feels like every day there’s a new statistic about women being under-represented in Hollywood and while, to some extent, things are looking brighter and more diverse by the day, it’s an uphill struggle. Still, as we wait for Hollywood to get its act together, I thought I’d celebrate a genre where awesome, strong, multi-faceted female characters have led casts as a regular occurrence for decades - martial arts!

See related Netflix's Stranger Things: Shawn Levy interview Netflix's
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Cine-Sunday: ‘Force of Five’ Review

Stars: Sasisa Jimdamanee, Johnny Nguyen, Nantawooti Boonrapsap, Arunya Pawilai, Nawarat Techarathanaprasert, Paytaai Wongkamlao | Written byNonont Kontaweesook, Napalee | Directed by Krissanapong Rachata

[Editor’s Note: Welcome to the first installment of Cine-Sunday, a new weekly feature here on Nerdly where we revisit the newly-revived Cine-Asia’s back catalogue and review the highlights. Going forward each new review will go live on Sunday’s at noon (UK time). And you can see all the Cine-Asia titles we’ve reviewed, so far, right here]

Despite their small size and inexperience, having grown up under the roof of a Muay Thai school two young brothers and their friends have become highly skilled, if undisciplined, martial artists. Sadly, the youngest of the gang suffers from an acute heart condition, which following a minor scuffle with some local bullies lands him in hospital and desperately in need of a life-saving transplant. Fortunately, a viable heart soon becomes available at another local hospital, but before it can be transferred the building is overtaken by rebel soldiers-turned-terrorists prepared to kill if their politically-driven demands are not met by the authorities.

With only four hours in which the surgery can be performed successfully, the young friends take it upon themselves to infiltrate the hospital and retrieve the donated organ.
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Warrior King DVD Review

Director: Prachya Pinkaew.

Starring: Tony Jaa, RZA, Petchtai Wongkamlao, Jeeja Yanin, Marrese Crump, Rhatha Phongam.

Running Time: 104 minutes

Certificate: 15

Returning to the role of Kham, Tony Jaa once again finds himself having to save his elephant. The fact that this second Warrior King film relies on the same story, which although ridiculously cute is still ridiculous, certainly means that the film absolutely has to make up for it with exciting action sequences, it does this to a degree, but there’s a reason that Warrior King 2 is mostly hated by fans.

Tony Jaa arrived on the scene with Ong-bak, a film that prided itself on a complete lack of CG, green screen, and false wire work. Jaa’s career blossomed in a time where we began to become jaded by such gimmicks, and so at a time of The Expendables 3 and superhero features it would be great to
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Hey Australia! Don't Miss Madman's Massive August Giveaway!

It's the beginning of the month and so it's time for another massive giveaway competition from Madman. This month, we have three massive prize packs to give away! They are:1) The Raid 2 / Panna Rittikrai Prize Pack (pictured above): - The Raid 1 and 2, Merantau (Blu-rays or DVDs)- Ong Bak 1, 2 and 3, Chocolate, Bangkok Knockout, Born To Fight, This Girl Is Bad Ass (DVDs)2) The Bridge / Killing / Protectors Prize Pack (pictured below): - The Bridge Series 1 and 2 Collections (DVDs)- The Killing Trilogy (DVDs)- The Protectors Series 1 and 2 (DVDs)3) The Manga / Anime Prize Pack (pictured below): - Volume 1 of each of these Urawasa manga series: 20th Century Boys, Pluto, Monster- Astro Boy 60s collection (DVDs)- Astro Boy 80s collection (DVDs)For...

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Panna Rittikrai dies aged 53

  • ScreenDaily
Panna Rittikrai dies aged 53
Panna Rittikrai, the action choreographer who introduced Thai action movies to world audiences, has died aged 53.

According to local press reports, Panna died from liver disease on Sunday in a Bangkok hospital. He had been battling illness since November 2013.

Born in 1961 in Khon Kaen province, Panna started working in the Bangkok film industry in 1979 training actors to fight. After moving back to his hometown, he put together his own stunt team and started making action movies. He trained Tony Jaa and had a major hit in 2003 with Ong Bak, produced by Sahamongkolfilm.

Directed by Prachya Pinkaew, Ong Bak introduced a new style of realistic, wire-free action choreography and put the Thai martial art of Muay Thai on the world map. It was swiftly followed by Tom Yum Goong (aka The Protector), reuniting the same team.

Panna soon turned director, as well as action choreographer, and directed a string of films for Sahamongkol including The Bodyguard, Ong Bak 2 and
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Panna Rittikrai, Muay Thai Action Maestro, Dead at 53

Panna Rittikrai, Muay Thai Action Maestro, Dead at 53
Seoul – Panna Rittikrai, Thailand’s leading martial arts stuntman, choreographer and film director, died Sunday (July 20, 2014) age 53.

Rittikrai was mentor to Thailand’s contemporary martial arts stars Tony Jaa and Jeeja Janin, among others.

His credits include directing “Born to Fight” (in 1986 and again in 2004) and “Ong Bak” parts 2 and 3 and action choreography on and “Tom Yum Goong” (aka “The Protector”). He also appeared as an actor-fighter-stuntman in over 50 movies from 1982-2010.

Rittikrai died in hospital in Bangkok from complications brought on by acute liver and kidney failure. It was also recently discovered that he had a brain tumor as well.

Born as Krittiya Lardphanna and hailing originally from the northeastern Isaan region, Rittikrai started his film career by providing physical training to Thai actors in Bangkok. He later returned to his home province and formed the Ppn Stunt Team / Muay Thai Stunt Team, with which he started making films.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Panna Rittikrai Has Sadly Passed Away – R.I.P (1961-2014)

Panna Rittikrai, the action choreographer who brought us Tony Jaa and Jeejaa Yanin has sadly passed away at the age of 53. It was said Panna was suffering from a long illness, which he sadly did not come through. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this sad time.

Panna had some great movies under his belt as choreographer, he brought the world Tony Jaa (Ong Bak movies) and more recently Tom Yum Goong 2. Also we seen Jeeja Yanin come through in the movie Chocolate and Dan Chupong (Born To Fight).

Panna started off by forming his own 20 man stunt team and was driven by watching movies from Jackie Chan and Bruce Lee. In an interview he once said “When the audience realises that the stunt-work is real — that they’re not special effects — they’ll regard it not only as spectacle but as something more high-impact,
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In ‘The Protector 2′, Tony Jaa becomes a victim of his own success

The Protector 2

Written by Eakisit Thairaat

Directed by Prachya Pinkaew

Thailand, 2013

Thai martial-arts star Tony Jaa started the current renaissance in South Asian action cinema alongside director Prachya Pinkaew with the 2003 film Ong-Bak, but eleven years on, the warts in their style are starting to show. None of Jaa’s subsequent films has had a comprehensible plot, and Pinkaew’s later attempts to employ computer-generated effects have not matched the down-and-dirty practical stunts in Ong-Bak. Jaa’s latest, The Protector 2,has those same problems, but it also understands the elemental appeal of a balletic fight scene.

The first Protector film (also known by the title of its uncut international version, Tom Yum Goong) had Jaa playing a rural Thai elephant tender, assaulting everyone in Sydney to find one of his kidnapped charges. The best plot summary that one can provide for The Protector 2 is, “the same elephant gets taken again.
See full article at SoundOnSight »

‘The Kick’ Review

Stars: JeeJa Yanin, Cho Jae Hyun, Phettai Wongkamlao, Ye Ji-won, Tae-joo Na | Written by Jong-suk Lee | Directed by Prachya Pinkaew

The Kick has one hell of a pedigree. Directed by Prachya Pinkaew, who lensed to international hit Ong Bak, as well as the well-regarded Chocolate – whose star JeeJa Yanin is also in this – the movie features a wealth of Thai talent, including Cho Jae Hyun from The Isle and Phetthai Vongkumlao, who is one of Thailand’s biggest comedians.

But the real star is Tae-joo Na – in only his second ever film role – who shows the same type of martial arts skill that made Jackie Chan famous, mixing slapstick and fighting with consummate ease; and the scene in which he tries out to be a K-Pop star, blending dance with martial arts, are breathtaking.

The story is a little light – it essentially bad guys versus kung-fu family – but that doesn
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Danny Pang’s The Fairytale Killer: DVD review

Director: Danny Pang. Review: Adam Wing. The last time the Pang Brothers scored a hit was in 2006 with fantasy horror yarn, Re-cycle. Their collaborations have fared better than their solo offerings, but with The Detective, Diary and Abnormal Beauty under his belt, Oxide is the more reliable of the two. Danny has made some real clunkers along the way, including snooze-fest Forest of Death and In Love with the Dead. There's no doubting the visual prowess of either brother, but when it comes to great storytelling, fan favourites like The Eye and Bangkok Dangerous are fast becoming distant memories. Psycho-thriller Fairy Tale Killer is written and directed by Danny Pang, in collaboration with Thai director of photography Decha Srimantra (The Eye, Chocolate). In Lau Ching Wan (Mad Detective), Fairy Tale Killer has found a strong lead actor, but Danny also casts Wang Bao Qiang (Blind Shaft), Elanne Kwong (The Child's
See full article at 24FramesPerSecond »

DVD Review - The Kick (2011)

The Kick, 2011.

Directed by Prachya Pinkaew.

Starring Jae-hyeon Jo, Ji-Won Ye, Tae-joo Na, Petchtai Wongkamlao, JeeJa Yanin, Kyung-Suk Kim and Kwan-hun Lee.


A family of Korean Taekwondo experts become targeted by ruthless gangsters after they foil the planned criminal theft of a priceless Thai artefact.

This neat fusion of slapstick comedy and intricate martial arts from Ong-bak and Chocolate creator Pinkaew is reminiscent of the kind of Hong Kong movies that Jackie Chan used to make back in the 1980s. Concentrating on turbo charged scenes of feet, fists and swords; the joint Korean-Thai production finds its mark with explosive force and accomplished dexterity.

Following a Korean family team of Thai-based Taekwondo fighters as they prevent the robbery of the ancient knife the 'kris of kings', the film pits a blood-thirsty gang of criminals as they try to claim the artefact. The younger members of the family are sent out to their uncle,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

The Kick: DVD review

Director: Prachya Pinkaew. Review: Adam Wing. Thailand's top action movie director Prachya Pinkaew - the man behind Ong Bak and Chocolate - delivers another breakthrough in action cinema with The Kick, the first Thailand-Korea joint production. Cho Jae Hyun (Bad Guy), Ye Ji Won (Hanji), and taekwondo athletes Kim Kyung Suk and Na Tae Joo, form a family of Korean taekwondo masters living in Thailand. The Kick pits them against a gang of ruthless criminals, in an endearing action movie that mixes comedy, choreography and crocodiles to blistering effect. You can't have a Thai action movie without the presence of Petchtai Wongkamloo, the pintsized comedy sidekick whose smart mouth gave Tony Jaa a run for his money in Ong Bak and Warrior King. Wongkamloo is joined by the ever-so-striking JeeJa Yanin, kick-ass heroine of Chocolate and Raging Phoenix fame, who still manages to impress despite an alarming lack of screen time.
See full article at 24FramesPerSecond »

Tiff’s 25 Years of Midnight Madness: Best of the Fest #2

Tiff’s Midnight Madness program turned 25 this year, and for two and half decades, the hardworking programers have gathered some of the strangest, most terrifying, wild, intriguing and downright entertaining films from around the world. From dark comedies to Japanese gore-fests and indie horror gems, the Midnight Madness program hasn’t lost its edge as one the leading showcases of genre cinema. In its 25-year history, Midnight Madness has introduced adventurous late-night moviegoers to such cult faves as Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused and Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs. But what separates Midnight Madness from, say, Montreal’s three and half week long genre festival Fantasia, is that Tiff selects only ten films to make the cut. In other words, these programmers don’t mess around. Last week I decided that I would post reviews of my personal favourite films that screened in past years. And just like the Tiff programmers,
See full article at SoundOnSight »

Watch Jeeja Yanin In Behind The Scenes Clip For Tom Yum Goong 2

If you are looking to get your fix while waiting for Tom Yum Goong 2 to hit any sized screen near you perhaps this behind the scenes clip featuring Jeeja Yanin will quell your hunger pangs.First she talks about her character Ping Ping...Jeeja talks about her character Ping Ping in the film and how she's different from the one in Chocolate. In Chocolate she was more like a child while Ping Ping is more focused and knows what she wants and how to get it. Then she talks about the martial arts and fighting in the film..."Not just Muay Thai anymore but more modern day hand to hand. Fighting with a twin is difficult. Timing and rhythm is very important. Tyg 2 took so long to...

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A Quartet Of New Tom Yum Goong 2 Character Posters With Nary An Elephant In Sight

With the Thai release of Tony Jaa star vehicle Tom Yum Goong 2 edging up a quartet of new posters have released for the film focusing on four of the main characters - Jaa and Chocolate star Jeeja Yanin among them - with nary an elephant to be found anywhere. Check them out in the gallery below and remember you can click to enlarge....

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The Kick smashes its way on to U.K. DVD in October

Thailand's top action movie director Prachya Pinkaew - the man behind Ong Bak and Chocolate - delivers another high-octane hit with The Kick, the first Thailand-Korea joint production. Cho Jae Hyun (Bad Guy), Ye Ji Won (Hanji), and taekwondo athletes Kim Kyung Suk and Na Tae Joo become heroes when they inadvertently stop a crime ring from stealing a national treasure, which doesn't go down particularly well it has to be said. If that's not enough to whet your appetite, Chocolate's Jija Yanin, who was originally trained in taekwondo, co-stars as well. The Kick smashes its way on to U.K. DVD on 7 Oct 2013. This film may contain scenes of a kick-ass nature. Synopsis: After the son of a family of taekwondo experts foils an attempt to steal a priceless Thai artefact, the family becomes national heroes - and targets of revenge by the criminal gang whose robbery the son foiled.
See full article at 24FramesPerSecond »

First trailer for Tony Jaa’s Tom Yum Goong 2

Tony Jaa is back. It's been a tough few years for the former Buddhist monk, but we're pleased to announce the return to big screen action for one of Thailand's brightest stars. After going way over budget on the highly anticipated sequels to Ong-Bak, the first time director and star abandoned production and escaped to a secluded cave hideaway. It was his mentor - Ong-Bak director Panna Rittikrai - that stepped in to save the film. They weren't the best of friends for a little while but time is a great healer and now they're back in action, on a quest to rescue Kham's (Jaa) pet elephant. Again. The plot - as is usually the case - really isn't up to much, but Rittikrai and Jaa have something special up their sleeves. That's right, for the hotly anticipated sequel Jaa has teamed up with none other than Yanin "Jeeja" Vismitananda
See full article at 24FramesPerSecond »
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