7.0/10
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85 user 88 critic

Chocolate (2008)

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2:03 | Trailer

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An autistic girl with powerful martial art skills looks to settle her ailing mother's debts by seeking out the ruthless gangs that owe her family money.

Director:

Prachya Pinkaew

Writers:

Napalee (screenplay), Chookiat Sakveerakul (screenplay)
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1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
JeeJa Yanin ... Zen (as Yanin Vismitananda)
Hiroshi Abe ... Masashi
Pongpat Wachirabunjong Pongpat Wachirabunjong ... No.8
Taphon Phopwandee Taphon Phopwandee ... Mangmoon
Ammara Siripong Ammara Siripong ... Zin (as Ammara Siriphong)
Dechawut Chuntakaro Dechawut Chuntakaro ... Priscilla
Hiro Sano Hiro Sano ... Ryo (as Hirokazu Sano)
Aroon Wanatsabadeewong Aroon Wanatsabadeewong ... Ice Factory Owner-Ice Man (as Aroon Wanasbodeewong)
Anusuk Jangajit Anusuk Jangajit ... Candy Shop Owner
Nattakit Teachachevapong Nattakit Teachachevapong ... Pork Man
Sirimongkhon Iamthuam Sirimongkhon Iamthuam ... Boxer No.8 Henchman
Kittitat Kowahagul Kittitat Kowahagul ... Epileptic Boxer
Thanyathon Seekhiaw Thanyathon Seekhiaw ... Fur
Pirom Ruangkitjakan Pirom Ruangkitjakan ... Petch
Soumia Abalhaya Soumia Abalhaya ... Boxer's Henchman
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Storyline

When Zin, former girlfriend of a Thai mob boss, falls for Masashi, a Japanese gangster in Thailand, the boss banishes them: Masashi to Japan, and Zin, with her small daughter Zen, to live next to a martial arts school. Zen is autistic, with uncanny swift reflexes. She watches the students next door and Muay Thai movies, absorbing every technique. She's now a teen, and her mother needs chemotherapy. Zin has taken in a chubby kid, Moom, who watches over Zen. Moom finds a ledger listing business men who owe Zin money; he goes to them one at a time to collect in order to pay for Zin's treatment. Zen, with her martial skills, becomes his enforcer. A showdown with the boss is inevitable. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The most bone crunching fight scenes of the year. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence throughout, and brief sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Thailand

Language:

Thai | Japanese | English

Release Date:

6 February 2008 (Thailand) See more »

Also Known As:

Chocolate See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,180, 8 February 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$13,925, 15 February 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| |

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film originally included Zen watching scenes from Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan movies (in addition to Tony Jaa), but these scenes were eventually cut due to licensing problems. These licensing problems also caused other scenes to be removed from the original movie. The ice factory scene was originally shot as a split screen of Zen imitating the exact same moves she had seen Bruce Lee do in a fight scene from the movie The Big Boss (1971). It showed a clip of Bruce Lee doing his fight moves at the same time as Zen was mimicking Bruce Lee's moves. The warehouse scene was shot in a similar fashion, but this time it showed a split screen of Zen imitating Jackie Chan, wherein she would do her interpretation of a Jackie Chan fight routine. Eventually not only were the split screen scenes removed, but any scenes that involved Zen performing moves that too closely resembled fight sequences from Bruce Lee or Jackie Chan movies were all cut as well. The original full version that included these scenes has not been released anywhere in Thailand. See more »

Goofs

When the mob boss is informed that Zin and Masashi still have a relationship, a record can be seen being played on the record player. However, no music can be heard. See more »

Connections

Features The Protector (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Mediocre Script, But the Action Is Everything You Want It To Be!
14 May 2008 | by ebossertSee all my reviews

Note: Check me out as the "Asian Movie Enthusiast" on YouTube, where I review tons of Asian movies.

Chocolate is the perfect "acid test" to determine who are fans of action movies and who are not. How so? Let me explain. A true fan of action movies has the ability to overlook some flaws in film-making (e.g., script, acting, character development, etc.) if the action sequences are exceptional enough to make up for them. This is no different from fans of art-house dramas who can overlook minimal content if the film can portray everyday life in interesting ways. With that said, Chocolate is one of the best examples of an action movie that has such extraordinary fight sequences that they easily overpower any deficiencies in the script.

An autistic girl with martial arts skill attempts to collect on the debts of her sick mother. This movie has a mediocre script, and requires some patience from the viewer to slug through the early moments. Once the 30 minute mark arrives, however, the viewer is treated to one of the most amazing displays of asskicking by a female protagonist in the history of action cinema. Virtually all of the remaining 50 minutes is devoted to high quality choreography and bone-crunching maneuvers. The settings and scenarios change frequently, thereby avoiding any feel of repetition or monotony. This is brainless action at its very finest. JeeJa Yanin – an amazing specimen with her fluid moves and hard strikes – catapults herself into the upper echelon of female action stars with this single movie. Her punches and kicks start off rather basic, but get increasingly more complex until they peak during the jaw-dropping finale that lasts a whopping 20 minutes. Lots of fun to be had here.

Now, a snobby moviegoer will cry about the negatives without even considering the positives. Anyone who does not enjoy the action in this movie seriously needs to get their pulse checked, or at least schedule for a re-alignment of their action movie tastes. There's nothing more scintillating than watching a cute girl kick the living hell out of hundreds (quite literally) of stuntmen in a variety of environments. Basically, if you're not entertained by this, you're not a fan of action movies. (You probably didn't like So Close or Azumi either, right?) Stop fooling yourself and go watch another Tsai Ming-liang film.

Some critics have claimed that this movie "ripped off" other movies. It didn't. There are a few homages that last a few minutes at most (a few Bruce Lee references, a locker scene reminiscent of Jackie Chan, and some footage from Tony Jaa's movies). These few scenes are only a drop in the bucket, because 95% of the action is independent of any references to other movies. The sign-post battle on the apartment complex balconies is one glaring example of a completely novel (and breathtaking) sequence that pays homage to no one but itself.

This is definitely worth a blind buy. True fans of martial arts mayhem will end up re-watching the action scenes about a thousand times.


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