Out of the 4 I borrowed last week, I only managed to watch two. Fellini's 8 1/2 and Danny and Oxide Pang's Bangkok Dangerous. Much has already been written about the former. All I will add is that I enjoyed the fusion of fantasy and memory immensely.
(I will bite off a more manageable chunk next time. 2 DVDs?)
Bangkok Dangerous is a good debut, although I don't care much for the Pang Brothers' constant use of cuts to speed up the movie. Prepare yourself for a very shaky camera, and the most straightforward of plots with equally simple characters. Which isn't too bad with me so long as it's told well. The Pang brothers' no-frills treatment of violence is refreshing. Death straight up and undiluted; people die and hitmen run like mad. There is nothing cool about this underworld.
The problem is, it's been done before. For all the Pang brothers' stop-motion, quick filter changes and other camera tricks, their movie just isn't exceptional in any way, like a competent cafeteria cook.
The soundtrack was horrible though. Mostly limp techno, and the final piece did not sound appropriate at all.
The use of different film media within the movie itself is an interesting touch. For instance Kong's childhood looks like it was shot in grainy overexposed Super 8, like an old home video. But sometimes the effect obscures, as in Kong's final assassination which is nearly impossible to decipher due to the intense graininess.
In all not a bad flick, not as pretentious as some of the stuff we're seeing out of HK (e.g. Blood Brothers). And Premsinee Ratanasopha (Fon) is such cute eye candy ^_^