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Raging Phoenix (Deu suay doo) Reviews

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October 14, 2013
The Thai movie "Raging Phoenix" has a decent potential with a poignant back story, but unfortunately it is overshadowed by drawn-out fighting scenes. Some of the scenes even takes the duration of 10 minutes or more of the movie (without any break whatsoever). After a while, it gets a tad tiring to watch.
October 2, 2013
A forced and mediocre story is no match for the amazing and magnificent choreography in the numerous fight scenes. If you don't know the martial arts phenom that is Jeeja Yanin yet, you must watch this one!
December 15, 2012
Jeeja shows her talent beyond Muay Thai with a detour in Capoeira, but in the end the first love with elbows strikes win. Coreography good as always, plot marooning into a boringdoom striking with the power of big feet.
May 8, 2010
Forget about the token non-sensical plot elements, it didn't take me 5 minutes to find the fighting unrealsitc, dull and repetitive.
April 22, 2012
As expected there is hardly a plot here, just reasons to move from one action sequence to the next. But despite that, the choreographed fight sequences were very impressive, and even the melodrama from the cast was fun to watch.
March 21, 2012
This may be a B movie, but only because it's one of those films that doesn't take itself seriously. It is cheesy in some parts and the acting is decent, but it does have a solid plot you can follow and some killer fight scenes where they combine break dancing with martial arts. When girls start disappearing because of a human trafficking organization, 3 guys who use alcohol intoxication and a combination of martial arts and break dancing take on the criminals. Fun movie worth checking out
October 11, 2009
Entertaining movie but not nearly as good as Chocolate.
January 8, 2012
Keep in mind I knew this wasn't going to be like watching a well scripted drama. This was basically going to be a lot of setup and filler in-between fight scenes. For that reason I have to admit I spent most of the movie surfing the net and gave an occasional look at the screen to keep track of where the film was. Fight scenes were indicated by grunts and yells so I missed none of them.

Overall the film brought to mind the movie Band of The Hand. Oh joy. Same requirement of the "good guys" having to train hard in montages, and also work at getting along before finally taking on the "bad guys" who, like the drug dealers in BoTH, are likewise immune to regular police enforcement.

The early fight scenes are reminiscent of the dancing, spinning, acrobatic fighting found in 70's B-movie chop socky flicks with a tad bit of capoeira enough to look exotic. Like those old standbys, a major part of the first half of the film is all the "good guys" doing their level best to show they could replace Jackie Chan as the next "Drunken Master". Although as the movie progresses, aside from perhaps arriving drunk to the fight, no one drinks during the fight anymore. I am not even sure anyone was drunk in the last scene, despite the opening scenes where alcohol was what basically allowed them to be super fighters.

In the opening scenes the lesser baddies go down without much resistance, and are difficult only because they are in numbers. The baddies at the end are gods who take vicious blows to EVERYWHERE many many times over, and aside from getting a bit dirty, look fresh enough to go all night long. I have to admit this did prompt me to going back to web surfing to pass the time while the bad guys got softened up. Having made these villains so superhuman it takes a level of brutality to defeat them that it not just borders on the ridiculous, it goes all the way to the heart of the capital. If that's your thing, this is your movie. If not, have a hobby you can engage in at hand like I did.

All the bad guys die, and the good guys enjoy a Pyrrhic victory; but the world has been made safe from the evil depredations of human traffickers/perfume makers so we can all bask in the warm glow of hope as the movie closes credits.

I liked some of the fight moves a lot. I just wish they were depicted as being as brutal as I knew they would be if used for real. Having liked them enough early on kept me around until the end. This film can be turned on as background noise. You can definitely go to the corner store, take a few minutes of watching when you return to know exactly where you are in the movie's progress. Also feel free to move around and do what you have to.... like laundry or whatever.
elysianfields66
June 5, 2011
This may be a B movie, but only because it's one of those films that doesn't take itself seriously. It is cheesy in some parts and the acting is decent, but it does have a solid plot you can follow and some killer fight scenes where they combine break dancing with martial arts. When girls start disappearing because of a human trafficking organization, 3 guys who use alcohol intoxication and a combination of martial arts and break dancing take on the criminals. Fun movie worth checking out
September 2, 2011
Breakdance fighting on its own is pretty lame, but drunken monkey Muay Thai breakdance fighting is... well... about what you would expect. Only here it's delivered with sugar and spice by the cutie from CHOCOLATE,
August 1, 2011
A beautiful, colorful martial arts movie from Thailand, depicting a fictional fighting style that combines Muay Thai, drunken boxing, capioeira and, of all things, b-boy dancing. It starts off strong and fresh, although midway through the film, it drops much of what sets it apart and becomes a more traditional, if still quite good, fighting flick. Yanin "Jeeja" Vismitananda is outstanding.
G Louis
April 28, 2011
Excellent martial arts film. The vulnerable charisma of the main actress is irresistible, and the fight sequences are way above anything you have seen in creativity and even to some extent realism (real hits)...

It is a bit slow to start, but the patience is more than rewarded. Some of the introductory scenes are a bit strangely and annoyingly acted, but they do give the feel of an authentic "local" colour... The dialogue translation does not always carry well, but an unexpected surprise is the quality of the sets, and even better the quality of the title music, which is unfortunately used only in one electrifying fight (not the final one!)... Some good heroic scores do support a few of the bigger scenes. The constant lack of any weapons is a quickly accepted part of that universe, and is not annoying...

Very few of the moves do look wire-assisted, but much less obviously than in the big sword brawl in "Kill Bill"... If you wait through some of the slightly confusing or repetitive introductory fights (except one amazing one with several evil henchmen on spring-jumping stalks that allows them full airborne 360s), the repetitiveness actually lessens as the film goes on.

Much better than far more pretentious fare, especially the music!...

G.Louis
November 7, 2010
Though not as good as Chocolate Raging Phoenix is still a decent action film from Jeeja Yanin and company. The action scenes are simply jaw dropping and some moves have to been seen to be believed.
deano
deano

Super Reviewer

December 27, 2010
Amazing and the best Thai girl fighting movie ever made. This was surprising me personally, because JeeJa Yanin's previous role in Chocolate was so introverted and robotic that it was essentially impossible to determine whether or not this girl could steal a scene without beating someone's brains in. In Raging Phoenix, however, she really cuts loose during the opening half as she jokes around, engages in some funny dialogue, and participates in some light-hearted fight scenes involving drunken styles of martial arts. That one-vs-many boat brawl is - now wait for it - a boat-load of fun.
I love the cavern hideout finale lasts a solid 30 minutes is outstanding as well as JeeJa is going to defeat three enemies by herself while her buddies were down.
Tell you the truth, I really liked JeeJa's debut movie better than this.
Risya
December 8, 2010
Who knew you could kick so much butt just by dancing? Plus drunken Muay Thai? Kicks-ass! lol* To be honest I don't really care much about the whole plot of this movie because the story was quite ridiculous. The story starts off interesting but as it carried on the results are awful. I mainly rate this because of its martial arts. Although I admit many of the fight scenes was too aware of looking cool but I liked it anyway.
Matthew Dominic Gist
December 5, 2010
Deep down in her underground lair, Jaguar Gang leader London (Jindasee Roongtawan) and her diabolical henchmen are milking the tears from kidnapped women for use in some kind of super-perfume that... well, it's not really clear what it does, but it sure is expensive. Deu (Yanin "Jeeja" Vismistananda), nearly kidnapped herself, is rescued by Sanim (Kazu Patrick Tang), whose sweetheart was taken from him by the Jaguar Gang on their wedding day. Sanim and sidekicks Pig Shit (Nui Saendaeng), Dog Shit (Sompong Lertwimonkaisom), and Bull Shit (Boonprasayrit Salangam) teach Deu the art of Meyraiuth, which is apparently some fusion of breakdancing, Zui Quan, and Muay Thai. The group soon sets forth to thwart the sinister plot and find Sanim's bride. Or something like that.

I'm going to go ahead and get straight to the point here. While I was genuinely looking forward to seeing Raging Phoenix, this film takes the prize for the absolute worst Asian film I've ever seen. When the bad guys chasing Deu on bladed pogo-stilts make their appearance five minutes into the film, I had more or less given up any hope of intellectual stimulation, but I'm afraid that was only the beginning. If you thought Chocolate (2008) was silly, you clearly haven't seen Raging Phoenix.

To be fair, I found Yanin "Jeeja" Vismistananda to be charismatic, likable, and certainly more attractive in this film than she appeared in Chocolate, but she could be Gong Li and it still wouldn't save this train wreck of a film. While I found Yanin "Jeeja" Vismistananda perfectly tolerable, I can't say the same for Kazu Patrick Tang's character, Sanim, whose brooding personality wouldn't look out of place in Twilight if it weren't for the facial hair. Meanwhile, Jindasee Roongtawan, who plays London, has zero acting ability, though, fortunately for us, she doesn't appear until quite late in the film.

The first thing Raging Phoenix fails to do is establish any indicator of place. All we know is it's all going down somewhere in Thailand and the beach can be seen several times throughout the film. Aside from the beach, most of the sets-particularly the Jaguar Gang's lair-look like something from a theme park. Whoever designed these sets made some very liberal use of plaster and dry ice. If you're foolish enough to endure this film, my advice to you is to see it in low resolution. I made the mistake of seeing it in full 1080p, which didn't make the poorly executed CGI look any better either. Also, why is there an unexplained bottomless pit in the Jaguar Gang's lair?

Besides all that, isn't the whole premise of rendering perfume from the human body lifted from Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (2006), one of my favorite non-Asian films?

What makes Raging Phoenix so bad isn't just the fact that it's, well, bad, it's that it doesn't even seem to know it. The actors/actresses cry like babies as if we're supposed to take them seriously or even join in on the schmaltz-fest. Even the cheesy dramatic music is overkill and, lastly, there's the issue of pacing. If you're going to make a movie even half this bad, you could at least do your audience the service of shortening it up a bit. This was truly an ordeal on my part.
November 11, 2010
I really enjoyed this- it is probably an action movie geared more towards those with a *slight* affinity for romance- but the action was good and very plentiful, the story wasn't lacking, and it actually got some tears out of me. I would recommend this for those that like martial arts action without buckets of blood. The only inconsistency I found was that the beginning is all about drunken martial arts only later, really don't use alcohol. This can probably be explained by the "secret" to the fighting art later explained- but still you have to look deep to grasp that.
BigMoneyBruce
September 25, 2010
The only reason why I give this movie such a high rating is pretty much solely based on the martail arts style and large amount of fights. The story was not interrsting in the least and many of the attacks looked extreemly weak and could not have hurt anyone. But if you can suspend belief in that area the style was unique fast and entertaining. There were also so quite different looking actors selected for the roles witch I found interesting visually.
Chris D.
September 8, 2010
Deeja Yanin is certainly one to watch. After her impressive début with "Chocolate" she has now improved her acting skills and able to show emotions well.
Great film for action fans, and there is a LOT of action, and Deeja Yanin surely suffers for her art, as all actors have to take the blows and do their own falling and stunt-work. I have been impressed with the Thai film industry of late and this their latest is yet another credit to their country.
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