Blu-Ray Review: Ong Bak 3 – The Final Battle

ongbak3 Blu Ray Review: Ong Bak 3   The Final Battle

Tony Jaa was suppose to be the next big asian action movie star.  He had the lethal moves like Bruce Lee but did his own stunts Jackie Chan.  His first movie, Ong Bak, was an international success.  Martial art fans loved the movie for its brutal fight and innovative fight scenes.  But then Jaa started doing movies that were too similar to Ong Bak.  He didn’t branch out with the stories and he winded up doing Ong Bak 2.  Then came part 3.  Supposedly, Jaa, was overwhelmed with his instant celebrity status and wanted to stop making movies.  He was forced by the studios to do a 3rd Ong Back movie because of studio obligations.

What the viewers get in the third installment is a dull martial art flick.  The movie starts off after the sequel, Tien (Jaa) is captured by the king and faced to fight an army.  He beats most of them up but in the end, there’s too many of them.  He’s close to dying so the king lets him go free.  Tien trains back in his village with a Buddhist monk where he’s taught that violence isn’t the answer.  But this is an action movie so of course Tien still has to use some kind of violence to defeat the bad guys from the beginning of the movie.  He also gets some kind of supernatural help.

Going into this movie, I didn’t have much hope for it.  The sequel was already pretty bad.  I was at least hoping for some good fight scenes and there are some decent ones.  Just don’t expect to get blown away with the hand to hand combat.  We’ve all seen it before in his previous movies.   But if you can’t get enough of your Jaa fix, it’s worth a watch.
Grade: C

A very good transfer for a film that was originally shot in Thai Land.  I didn’t notice any dust/scratches that’s usually associated with Asian produced films (due to the way they store their originals).  The fight scenes look great and the bloody fight scenes really stand out.  It’s presented in 2.35:1, anamorphic HD.
Grade: A

The sound effects of bones breaking and the thud of the sharp elbow and flying knees never sounded so good.  The bass is deep.  I watched it in Thai DTS-HD 5.1 with subtitles but there’s also an English track.  There’s no complaints with the sound, the surrounds are put to good use to with the rain and the jungle’s wildlife.
Grade: A

There’s several featurettes including an HDNet Behind the scenes, interview with cast and crew, fight scenes deconstruction, deleted footage.  Out of the four, the best one is the fight scene deconstruction.  It makes you appreciate the fight scene even though you’ve seen it before in Jaa’s previous movies.  They really work hard to make it look good.
Grade: B

It’s too bad Ong Bak 3 lacked originality because this was a great presentation on Blu-Ray.  The video and audio is great and the extras are mildly entertaining.  This is supposedly Jaa’s last movie but if he ever decides to come back, let’s hope he has original ideas in his sleeve.  The man is talented but needs to choose better projects.
Overall Grade: C+ (Not an average)


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