Tom Yum Goong

Tom Yum Goong

Rating: ******

Directed by Prachya Pinkaew
Starring Tony Jaa

Tony lost his elephants.
Wherever can they be?
He had them just a minute ago.
Perhaps his dad has seen.

There he is. Oh no! He’s dead!
Slain by evil men.
They must have grabbed his elephants.
Tony must find them.

Though Tony’s not a Private Eye,
This doesn’t make him pout.
He just starts beating people up.
And hoping he lucks out.

As luck would have it Tony is
An expert martial artist.
It’s a good thing, too, ‘cause if he weren’t
He’d die before he started.

He clobbers people left and right
And knees them in the chest,
The head, the back, the face, the ribs—
I knew you’d be impressed!

He also uses elbows
And does fantastic flips.
He can jump so very high
For a man with narrow hips.

“Where are my elephants?” he screams
As he knocks men off their haunches.
Finally he departs for Australia
When all of Thailand is unconscious.

Here he meets far tougher guys
Whose fighting styles vary.
Karate, Capoeira…
But he mashes them like berries.

At last he finds the baby
And he brings him into battle
Against large professional wrestlers
And an army. Let’s skedaddle!

But Tony doesn’t hesitate,
Even when the calf gets harmed.
He doesn’t slow down half a notch
Even if the men are armed.

But then he sees his elephant,
The biggest one he lost.
All that’s left’s a skeleton.
He’s anguished, helpless, lost.

This big distraction costs him,
For he gets stabbed in the gut,
A wound that quickly heals
When he gets out of his rut.

Fuming now, his anger mounts
As twenty goons come near him.
So he starts breaking arms and legs
Till all his victims fear him.

The violence in this movie mounts.
The audience can barely keep pace.
He starts running at a wrestler
Delivering a double flying knee to the face!

Then he climbs upon him
And elbows his cranium seven times,
Though the last one’s interrupted
By the boss who commits crimes.

He tries to fight the boss when
Even more wrestlers come by.
Poor Tony sails through the air,
But now’s not the time to cry.

He visits his dead elephant friend
And borrows two of his bones,
Which he straps onto his forearms
So his attacks are hard as stones.

Then he cracks the villains hard,
Again and again and again.
He does this till his bones have split,
Becoming sharp as switchblades then.

Then he starts severing tendons
Till his foes can’t even move.
Now it is the boss’ turn.
He’ll not fall for another ruse.

The boss tries to flee from him
In a helicopter, yet,
But Tony incapacitates him
With a double flying knee to the chest.

They both fall down through each floor
Of a multi-storied building,
Though neither one gets fatally harmed
From the building’s bamboo welding.

At movie’s end, his problem solved,
Tony goes back home.
He takes his extant elephant
And leaves half of Australia prone.

This movie is the best film
That Tony Jaa has made.
I give it five stars out of six
For the action, pacing and First Aid.

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