About the only inventive thing in Bangkok Revenge–and I doubt writer-director Minéo uses it for this reason–is lead Jon Foo being unable to experience emotion. It means Foo doesn’t have to give a particularly good performance. He just has to deliver his lines and he does. He’s not a bad guy, of course, quite the opposite. Corrupt cops killed his parents and now he’s grown up (the brain damage is from the attack) and seeking, you guessed it, revenge.
Otherwise, Minéo’s atrocious. He can’t compose a shot, he can’t come up with good fight scenes (he amps up the stylizing to fake ingenuity), he can’t direct actors. He also has a lot of the film in English, but only Foo seems to be able to speak it. His mentor, Kowitch Wathana (in a terrible performance), mangles every line of English dialogue he’s got. He seems completely fluent in Thai, but Minéo seems more concerned with international distribution than a decent picture.
Caroline Ducey, as the erstwhile love interest, butchers her English dialogue too. Minéo would have done a lot better if no one in Bangkok spoke the same language or really understood one another. It would have made for a far more entertaining film.
Somewhat surprisingly–given Minéo’s profound incompetence–are the photography and music. Teerawat Rujinatum shoots DV quite well and Christophe Gerber’s score is professional.
Occasionally (and rather momentarily), Revenge has a moment with marginal potential. But, every time, the incompetence returns immediately.
Written and directed by Jean-Marc Minéo; director of photography, Teerawat Rujinatum; edited by Hugo Picazo and Nicolas Sarkissian; music by Christophe Gerber; produced by Cédric Jimenez; released by China Lion Film Distribution.
Starring Jon Foo (Manit), Caroline Ducey (Clara), Michaël Cohen (Simon), Aphiradi Phawaphutanon (Chanticha), Winai Kraibutr (Samat), Kowitch Wathana (Adjan), Lioutsia Goubaidoullina (Jessy), Julaluck Ismalone (Ying) and Thiraphong Riawrukwong (Superintendent).
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