Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Tears of the Black Tiger (2001)

This was kind of a crap shoot. Either this movie was going to be abyssmal or pretty cool. The group we went with was fairly divided. I thought that it was pretty cool.

If you haven't heard anything about Tears of the Black Tiger then let me tell you the basic premise. It's a Thai Western with star-cross'd lovers shot in a classic '60s style only with insane ultra-violence and filmed only a few years ago. If you're familiar with classic Westerns with "John...Marsha...John...Marsha" melodrama complete with sighs, wistful glances, and tears...lots of tears then you won't be surprised. If you're familiar with old HK movies with melodrama/violence/melodrama/violence/"Happiness is as fleeting as the sweet Spring breeze." sigh/cheezy song/violence/melodrama/big showdown/tears/the end then you won't be surprised. Some of you may be surprised by the level of graphic violence. I was to a certain extent. There are: a couple of pretty grisly head shots, explosions that blast people into little chunks, dismemberments, and lots of people getting lead poisoning. It's pretty refreshing actually because the action breaks up a good chunk of melodrama & flashbacks. The violence also creates a good amount of the humor in the movie, at least in my book.

Apart from the cheese and the action and the astounding colors I will say that I really dug the soundtrack and look forward to adding to my collection if I can find it. The soundtrack consists of an insane mix of Thai ballads, lounge numbers, mushy love songs, bizarre pseudo-Spaghetti Western influenced scoring, twangy guitar & whistling - I swear to God it was Thai Western Swing, and one bizarre piece of scoring that had a lot of disconcerting warble on it. Sure it wouldn't make for everyday listening but still it'd be a solid addition to a collection.

I wouldn't say that this movie is for everyone. I can understand why it would turn a good number of people away. Watch the trailer. If you like what you see then watch the movie. If not then don't watch the movie. Simple as that.