The Kick on DVD

Sunday, 06 October 2013 11:35

The Kick - out now on DVDJackie Chan may be taking it relatively easy these days, but others in the world of martial arts cinema are certainly not. “The Kick” is a fun-filled, action spectacular from Prachya Pinkaew, Thai director of “Ong-bak” and “Chocolate”. The story focuses on the theft of the mystical ‘Kris of Kings’, a blade said to reward the holder with the power to rule the world. The thieves do not count on the intervention of a brave and gifted family of taekwondo experts, however.

Suck Doo (Kwan-hun Lee), the smartly-dressed leader of a gang of scowling, hoody-wearing criminals desperately wants the sword, but it seems like the family are always one step ahead of him. Queue a string of innovative, high-energy action sequences set in zoos, exhibition halls and dingy warehouses. Those seeking deep characterisation should look elsewhere but if you fancy an exhilarating and entertaining 90 minutes, this movie is worthy of your consideration.

The cast includes JeeJa Yanin from the aforementioned “Chocolate”, but this is really an ensemble piece where each character gets a fairly even bite of the cherry. Even the toddler gets in on the action, head-butting baddies where it hurts and putting his videogame skills to slightly predictable use in the real world!

The cast are good-looking and without exception pull off some remarkable stunts and martial arts moves, none less than Tae-joo Na as Tae Yang, the older son who struggles to meet up to his father’s rather exacting standards. Tae Yang would rather be a dancer than a fighter, but in the stand-out scene of the film manages to combine the two disciplines with scintillating effect.

He also commands a second incredible sequence where he takes down a bunch of hoodies in a large zoo barn, craftily dodging rows of low-hanging, fast-spinning fans whilst knocking and punching the enemy into them with comedic and wince-inducing effect.

The female characters more than hold up their end of the bargain and team up to create more martial arts magic. Yanin is joined by Kyung-suk Kim as the gifted daughter Tae Mi; together they are a force to be reckoned with. The mother character (Petchtai Wongkamlao) is also pretty handy when facing down adversity.

Some of the comedy falls a bit flat and the film does become a little saccharin-heavy now and then, but in soon picks up again and rattles along nicely.

A few trailers and some so-so out-takes during the closing credits are all you get with regard to bonus content. There are two audio tracks: Korean and an English dub, both in 5.1 stereo. The dubbing is fairly good and you do forget the actors are not speaking English within a short while. The DVD picture quality is also impressively clean and detailed.

“The Kick” (2011) is out now on DVD, courtesy of MVM. The main feature has a running time of 94 minutes approx, carries a ‘15’ certificate and retails for £15.99, or less from www.culttvstore.com

 

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