Every now and then you run across a movie that entertains both on the screen and behind-the-scenes. Such is the wondrous saga of “Ong Bak 2”, Thai martial arts movie star Tony Jaa’s directorial debut, and a film of great consternation for pretty much everyone associated with it, most of all Jaa himself. First, the producers of the movie released these fantastic footage from the film, which got everyone excited; then the trades reported that star/director Tony Jaa had gone missing; Jaa eventually surfaced with one of those just-too-weird-to-be-made-up stories about living in the jungles, meditating on what to do next, and being chased by gangsters. It’s all very amusing and makes for great water cooler chatter, but hopefully that’s all behind us now, and we can get to the meat of the matter: watching Jaa abuse Thai stuntmen for the sake of art.
The story is about a man with two sides – good and evil. Conceited about his talents, he lives in a world of darkness until he discovers the beauty of khon, (Thai masked dance), and transforms it into a gracious fighting skill. Hence the adventure begans as the young Thai boxer learns the skills and inner meaning of martial arts.
Three new posters for “Ong Bak 2” have surfaced via 24Framespersecond. I would still like to get a firm release date on this thing, but at this point, we’re probably looking at a 2009 release for an International release as a best case scenario, even though the film is still apparently being aimed at a December 4th, 2008 release in its native Thailand. We shall see.