Movie review: TOM YUM GOONG 2 (THE PROTECTOR 2)

Tony Jaa and Jeeja Yanin in Tom Yun Goong 2 aka The Protector 2 movie still


Verdict: Probably Tony Jaa's worst movie thus far. The simple search-for-lost-elephant plot of the first film was basically reused with a lousy attempt to overcomplicate the premise that created only embarrassing plot holes and unintentionally hilarious scenes. Thanks to the horribly digitalised and CGI sequences, this over-the-top action flick is far from gritty compared to Jaa's previous films. The fight choreography is decent but there's nothing that hasn't already been done before, or already been done better, by Jaa. The long awaited on-screen partnership between Jaa and the adorable ass-kicker "Jeeja" Yanin is not too disappointing but there's practically no development for her character and very little conversation between them. Simply put, Tom Yum Goong 2 is poor excuse for 3-D Thai action that's totally unnecessary and would only make the genre uncool. Also, the first film helps with animal abuse awareness, this sequel doesn't seem to have any purpose besides cashing in.

Not sure if Tony Jaa Tom Yun Goong 2 aka The Protector 2 meme

Second opinion: Fellow blogger Nor Elwyn said, "It's a movie that defies all logic."

Dumbest scenes that I can recall:
There's one scene where Kham (Jaa) follows Mark (Petchtai Wongkamlao) to a "secret" building to talk in private. They walk quite a distance, go farther deep into the building, lock the doors and all then not long after they talk, two different parties come barging into their place as though everybody knows where they are. Then there's this ranking number thing that LC (RZA), the antagonist, marks on his hitmen (from 30+ to 00). He kidnaps Kham, gives him the number one ranking and then plans to have him dead soon after. What the fuck is point then? The ending is so thoroughly stupid that I don't even wanna take the effort to type it all out here. The funniest part to me is when LC finds out that Kham is ruining his ultimate terrorist plan, he goes to confront him and intends to kill him but instead of bringing a gun, he brings a translator just to tell Kham how pissed off he is before fighting him. Tell me this is not dumb. And oh yeah, just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, the Lightsaber sound effects are used in this fight scene.

The only honest line:
Tony Jaa's Tom Yum Goong 2 aka The Protector 2 movie still Petchtai Wongkamlao meme

Malaysian marketing: "Real fighter, real action, Muay Thai rules" is the slogan on the poster here, but it's more like the total opposite of all that. This just proves that the promoters of this film are either ignorant or unethical with their work. One, Tony Jaa started his career as a stuntman, he was never a fighter. Two, the action in this movie are definitely way more unrealistic than any of his previous films. And finally, I believe the martial art used by Tony Jaa in his movies is more towards Muay Boran instead of Muay Thai, which to be fair, was a gimmick since the first Ong Bak.

Subtitle woes: "Remember, stay hungry, stay stupid," = "Jadi lapar dan bodoh." Did they get their janitor to do the job for them?

Malaysian censorship: Only a minor sexy murder scene was noticeably cut at the premiere screening.

Rating: 1 / 5

Tom Yum Goong 2 a.k.a The Protector 2 malaysia movie poster Rated: TBC
Genre: Action, Thai martial arts, comedy
Language: Thai, English
Subtitles: English, Malay, Chinese
Running Time: 104 minutes
Director-writer: Prachya Pinkaew
Cast: Tony Jaa, Yanin "Jeeja" Vismitananda, RZA, Petchtai Wongkamlao, Marrese Crump

Synopsis: The sequel to "Tom Yum Goong", Tony Jaa is the hard-hitting Kham. Kham is the last in long line of guards who once watched over the King of Thailand's war elephants. Traditionally, only the perfect elephants could successfully help defend the throne, after his harrowing quest to retrieve the elephants, Kham returns to his village to live in peace. But for someone as good in martial arts as him, peace is but a wishful thought...

Release date in Malaysia: October 23rd 2013
Distributor / studio: Ram Entertainment / Baa-ram-ewe

Watch the trailer

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10 comments:
  1. did you watch this in Malaysia already ? or Bangkok ?
    I live in Vancouver and its the 23rd of Oct here, and I read its only released in Malaysia on the 24th a day ahead of the Bangkok release.
    P.S - I'm malay too from Miri, Sarawak.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, the local premiere screening was on Tuesday night. Official release date is today.

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  2. ah I see.
    Well im not one that cares about spoilers for movies lol I even watch the same movies over and over n never get tired of them so im going to ask few questions through here. If you don't want to post here and ruin it for others, that's fine just email me on bcskater03@gmail.com

    Couple Questions :

    - Was the movie really that bad ?
    - How were the fight sequences ? Does Tony still use a lot of Muay boran because from the clips I saw released on youtube, it looked pretty bad.
    - How many fight sequences are there in the entire movie ?
    Those are what matter, the plots I rarely even bother with lol.

    Thanks man.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. - Was the movie really that bad ?
      [I believe the verdict and rating above pretty much answered this question.]

      - How were the fight sequences ? Does Tony still use a lot of Muay boran because from the clips I saw released on youtube, it looked pretty bad.
      [Yes he still does but with a lot of unnecessary, flashy moves as well. Let's not even talk about the part where there's lightsaber sound effects in the fight sequence.]

      - How many fight sequences are there in the entire movie ?
      [There are plenty of fight sequences, so much that it's quite difficult to recall but none of them are as believable as the ones in his other films. Everything is forgettable.]

      Delete
  3. damn eh, sahamongkol made us wait this long to give us a really bad sequel to the original.
    I think they just went really crazy with the 3D and the wires from the sounds of it. Your lucky you already saw it though lol lightsaber sound effects!
    I gotta give this a view, judging from your review Sahamongkol OWES us a tom yum goong 3, and done the right way don't you think ? for making us wait this long providing us with these results.

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  4. Luckily, I was never a fan. haha. for some reason, i didn't manage to get around watching any of his movies~ :p

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  5. I totally agree with this review. Here in India when I saw his first movie (Enter the New Dragon), I became instant fan of him. I just was addicted to his fight scenes, though there is not much in the way of story line in his movies. It all went down the drain with this movie. I saw it in Theater on December 28, 2013 (9:30 p.m.). I waited until the credits at the end of movie to see some awesome movies but unfortunately there were none. WHAT HAPPENED TO TONY JAA? In earlier movies, he used to do a fight scene in a single take, like fighting 3 to 4 guys with camera staying at the same place. Here there is too much junk animation and unbelievable stuff and camera is allover the place. Each blow is shot in 4 to 5 different angles, which makes it look like boring. People in the theater were laughing the entire movie like it was some silly comedy entertainer as opposed to serious kick-ass kinda stuff in earlier movies. Bad movie. I hardly give it some 3-4/10

    ReplyDelete
  6. I totally agree with this review. Here in India when I saw his first movie (Enter the New Dragon), I became instant fan of him. I just was addicted to his fight scenes, though there is not much in the way of story line in his movies. It all went down the drain with this movie. I saw it in Theater on December 28, 2013 (9:30 p.m.). I waited until the credits at the end of movie to see some awesome movies but unfortunately there were none. WHAT HAPPENED TO TONY JAA? In earlier movies, he used to do a fight scene in a single take, like fighting 3 to 4 guys with camera staying at the same place. Here there is too much junk animation and unbelievable stuff and camera is allover the place. Each blow is shot in 4 to 5 different angles, which makes it look like boring. People in the theater were laughing the entire movie like it was some silly comedy entertainer as opposed to serious kick-ass kinda stuff in earlier movies. Bad movie. I hardly give it some 3-4/10

    ReplyDelete
  7. "We want more" craving of audiences (action movie fans) has cost dear to most of the action stars and that's what the blazing movie like tom yum goong fails to appease action-hungry audiences. however, I watched the movie twice and frankly I didn't find anything wrong with it. Yes, there were some loopholes in the story, but it was purely an action movie and by far the best of prequel (in my viewpoint). At last, don't be pedantic and watch the movie coz you may lose the interest if you try to be a smartas# pedantic. Even Jet li used wire-fu in his latest movie, BADGE OF FURY. Tony at least did far better than him and well stood to my expectation (I dont care what reviewers say). Nobody is perfect and action scenes are not as easy as writing reviews sitting at your computer and hitting the keywords.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You sure you watched the same movie? It's not a prequel. Look, if you've paid and liked the movie so much that you watched it twice, good for you. You wanna compare it with another garbage to justify whatever, I don't care. Ultimately, we've all seen great action films, and anyone I know who's sane enough would agree that it's crap, and as a critic, professional or not, it's my job to tell it as it is. If you've already seen the movie and yet still browsing around for reviews, then obviously you're just a hardcore fan trying to defend your idol.

      Delete

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