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Vanquisher
BLU-RAY disk
04.05.2011 By: Jason Adams
Vanquisher order
Director:
Manop Udomdej

Actors:
Sophita Sriban
Jacqueline Apitananon
Kessarin Ektawatkul


Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A Thai special ops agent, left for dead by American CIA after a mission, returns to get revenge on those who wronged her. Oh, and stop Al Qaeda at the same time too.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
With the success of ONG BAK and other Thai movies, I guess we were bound for an onslaught of second tier offerings from their burgeoning film industry, but I really thought we had more time before movies this bad made their way overseas. VANQUISHER is probably one of the toughest movies Iíve had to endure as a reviewer, just a chore through and through.

How could a movie about beautiful Asian ninja girls kicking ass in leather outfits be so boring? VANQUISHER defies all odds in just how bad it is. The action scenes, which should be the main draw, are indecipherable and boring. The horrible direction leads to poorly-chosen angles, confusing close ups and editing that makes it difficult to tell exactly whatís going on, no matter how good the choreography is. Thereís a motorcycle chase in a dense jungle that goes so slow it rivals ECKS VS SEVER for laughs. And donít get me started on all the unnecessary slow motion. The director is clearly so gaga over Zach Snyder that even the surveillance footage the characters watch is in slo-mo.

The script appears to be written in English by someone who doesnít speak the language, with half of the dialogue in Thai and the other half in English and no rhyme or reason for why it constantly switches. The same goes for the actors, many of whom are clearly phonetically reciting their lines and even looking offscreen to read from cue cards amidst awkward pauses. (I donít have to speak Thai to tell you just how atrocious some of the line readings are in this.) The plot also attempts to be political with a story about terrorism and conspiracies based on world events, not to mention some pokes at George W. Bush. (Youíre a couple years late there.)

But mainly, even after finishing VANQUISHER, I really just had no idea what was going on in this movie. The plot is ludicrous and there are so many characters that itís laughable how impossible it is to keep track of all of themówho they are, which side theyíre on, how they relate to the story and to each other, etc. (And I donít mean that in an ďall Asian people look the sameĒ way either!) In some cases it seems like people are introduced in one scene and then never seen again, which is surprisingly not a huge deal because the plot doesnít make sense to begin with. I think at some point some samurai show up and the movie goes to Africa.

I really have no idea why this film was chosen for an international release as it has nothing redeemable. Surely, there must be some better movies in Thailand.
THE EXTRAS
Making of VANQUISHER (7:57): The subtitles on this special feature were broken on my review copy, so I have no idea what any of these people were talking about.

Behind the Scenes (7:35): Some raw footage from the set with techno music slapped on it.

Trailer and Previews.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
You might be expecting some ass kicking action based on other better Thai movies, but VANQUISHER is nothing but an endurance test to see how much of this crappy movie you can take. Why this even got an international release is bewildering to me.

Extra Tidbit: Seriously disappointed that nobody jumped on or off elephants at any point during this movie.
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