Aroview: A martial arts juggernaut from Thailand, in which a benign village kickboxer travels to big bad Bangkok in search of a sacred statue stolen from his village.
With its exhaustively creative (and brutal) fight sequences yet tongue always a little in cheek, this cranks up the ante from the Jackie Chan template, with a staggeringly physical performance from newcomer Jaa, who also has an ironic softness to his screen persona. The 'Muay-Thai' fighting style, though (apparently adapted from ancient instruction manuals), represents a new style of screen violence, all the more astonishing given that no CGI f/x, stunt doubles or wire-work was involved.
4 stars (Very Good) Tony Jaa is a soft-spoken unwilling hero with some seriously dangerous MuayThai skills and incredible acrobatics well worth checking out for martial arts fans. Fresh and fun choreography plus a straightforward storyline rounds out a great action film.~Tom H