The plot is simplistic drivel, has a twist that’s rather nonsensical, and is in no way related to the first film… but that’s not really why any of us watch this, is it? We watch it to see Tony Jaa doing things we didn’t think were humanly possible. Anyone familiar with his work will appreciate this film as his most visceral, polished, epic, and astonishing to date. Anyone not familiar should consider whether they’re interested in seeing the heir-apparent to Jet Li.
The set pieces are more elaborate than anything Jaa’s done before, and some people might miss the grittiness of his early work. The fights are all still outstanding, but there’s more of a focus on elaborate choreography than on straightforward brutality, which you prefer is really just a matter of taste. One final selling point: believe the cover art, there is a fight scene on top of a freakin’ elephant!
There are plenty of extras here, but I honestly couldn’t get passed the subtitles. I’ve got no problem with foreign language films, but the material in these featurettes just isn’t compelling enough to make me want to read through it. There’s certainly a lot here for martial arts buffs, but you’ll need to be really into it if you’re going to devote the necessary attention.
This movie looks great on Blu-Ray, although I’m not sure how much of a gain that is. The action here about fists and feet, not slick special effects. The DVD is probably sufficient.
Martial arts fans are sure to enjoy Tony Jaa’s finest outing, but those looking for more from this disk may want to pass. The extras are robust, though the subtitles make them less accessible. The plot certainly leaves a lot to be desired, but if you just want to see some outstanding stunt and incredible fight choreography then this is definitely the film for you.