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Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray

United States
20th Century Fox | 2003 | 105 min | Rated R | Feb 02, 2010

Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior (Blu-ray)
Large:


Video
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Original aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Audio
Thai: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Subtitles
English, Spanish

Discs
25GB Blu-ray Disc
Single disc (1 BD)

Playback
Region A (locked)

Price
List price: $24.99  
Amazon: $58.29
Best Buy: $19.99 (Save 20%)  
New from: $39.99
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Movie rating
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
7.2
91
ratings.


Blu-ray rating
Video 2.2 of 52.2
Audio 3.3 of 53.3
Extras 2.1 of 52.1
Based on 8 user reviews

Movie appeal

 
Action100%
Martial arts66%
62%
popularity
705
collections
16
fans




Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior

 (2003)

Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray features poor video and decent audio in this enjoyable Blu-ray release

When a sacred Buddha statuette called Ong-bak is stolen from Ting's village by a shady businessman intent on realizing a profit, Ting takes it upon himself to reclaim the pilfered religious treasure by following the trail of clues to Bangkok.

For more about Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior and the Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray release, see Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 3.0 out of 5.

Starring: Tony Jaa, Petchtai Wongkamlao, Pumwaree Yodkamol, Rungrawee Borrijindakul, Chetwut Wacharakun, Sukhaaw Phongwilai
Director: Prachya Pinkaew

» See full cast & crew


Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray, Video Quality

  2.0 of 5

"This new, digital transfer of Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior was created at Deluxe Postproduction Toronto from an original 35mm internegative of the film. Color correction, image stabilization, and digital cleaning were facilitated at Deluxe to restore the film and present it in high definition."

So says the "About the Feature Film Transfer" tab on the disc's bonus features menu, but this doesn't exactly explain why Ong Bak looks so terrible on Blu-ray, even considering the film's modest budget. I didn't read the above until after I had viewed the film, and I was actually surprised to find out that Ong Bak was, in fact, shot on 35mm. You'd never guess from the ultra-soft, extra-blurry, super-grainy image produced by this 1080p/AVC-encoded transfer, which looks poor even by 16mm standards. I'm not really sure what went wrong here in the transition from the original masters to the internegative to this digital transfer, but whatever it was, it left the picture in a smeary, indistinct mess. Fine detail is practically non-existent throughout, even in the tightest close-ups. Take the first scene—the tree fight—for example. The edges of the leaves and branches blur together almost like dampened lines in a watercolor painting. When we move into a closer shot of the fighters, there's hardly any definition in the mud caking their skin, a texture that would normally be quite distinct. Colors are equally weak, and seem sapped of intensity by an oppressive yellowish/brownish cast that covers all but the brightest daytime scenes. While black levels are deep, shadow detail is crushed regularly, and contrast is bland. You'll also notice some pixilation in the colors surrounding light sources, especially in the sky. The image looks bad in general, but certain shots look even worse, with intense grittiness, washed out colors, and a gauzy softness that makes the picture look like it was smeared with Vaseline. I never saw the film in theaters, so I can't comment on what it was like on the big screen, but it had to look better than this.


Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  3.0 of 5

Ong Bak arrives on Blu-ray with two DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround tracks, the original Thai language mix and an English dub. Except for the voices, they're nearly identical, with a surprisingly front-centric presence that leaves the rear channels in torpor for most of the film. You'll hear some occasional crowd ambience, some street sounds, and rural bird and insect noises, but that's about it in terms of immersion. Actually, if there's one thing that I noticed about the track, it's that it frequently uses loud hip-hop-ish music to distract from the fact that there's hardly any sound design at all. During the fight sequences, you'll hear all the big body blows—which sound canned—but the rest of the audio is conspicuously empty. The music is the most potent part of the mix, then, and it sounds decent, with lots of pulsing low-end bass and crisp digital drum hits. Most of the dialogue in the Thai mix seems to have been rerecorded in post-production—it has a slightly artificial quality—and the English dub is unintentionally funny most of the time. The overall effect is that the film sounds older than its age, like a kung-fu flick from the '70s.


Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior: Other Editions



1-disc
$16.94


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Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior Blu-ray, News and Updates



Ong Bak Blu-ray Announced - January 21, 2010

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment has announced the Blu-ray release of the Thai martial arts movie 'Ong Bak: The Thai Warrior' on February 2, thus tying in with the release of its prequel, 'Ong Bak 2: The Beginning', by Magnolia Home Entertainment. Audio ...


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