Follow TV Tropes


Film / Bangkok Dangerous

Go To
Left is the original. Right is the Caged-up remake.

Bangkok Dangerous is a 1999 crime/action movie directed by the Pang Brothers, revolving around Kong, a deaf-mute hitman, a professional killer who can neither hear nor see gunshots or victims. Trained to be ruthless without a conscience, Kong is one of the deadliest assassins in the mob, but complication ensues when he falls for Fon, a kindly pharmacist who teaches him to feel love and have emotions again.

The movie is remade by the same directors in 2008, but this time starring Nicolas Cage as the hitman protagonist. Cage stars as Joe, a professional freelance contract killer who operates on a global scale and have his own strict codes of honor, but after an assignment in Bangkok, he starts developing feelings when he fell in love with Fon, a deaf-mute woman.

Bangkok Dangerous (1999) provides examples of:

  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Several in the movie, may it be Kong and Joe bonding as brothers, or the lengthy amusement park scene where Kong and Fon goes on a romantic date.
  • Bloody Horror: The movie doesn’t hold back on showing the bloody effects of Kong’s killings, with plenty of close-ups on blood pooling on the dead. Heck, the movie’s opening credits are actually superimposed over the spreading pool of blood of a target Kong shot in a toilet.
  • Blown Across the Room: A henchman in the final shootout ends up flying a dozen meters backwards after a point-blank shotgun blast delivered by Kong.
  • The Can Kicked Him
    • Kong’s first onscreen kill is a man in a toilet. His blood on the floor is actually the background for the opening credits.
    • Joe kills the henchman responsible for raping Aom by shooting him while he’s taking a piss in a toilet.
  • Cycle of Revenge: The entire ending of the film revolves around this trope: Aom gets raped by the boss’ henchman for pissing him off, which results in Joe killing the henchman in anger. The mob boss then orders a hit on Joe, which leads to Joe marching to the boss’ quarters to kill everyone involved in Joe’s death
  • Death Montage: Assassination Montage, one halfway through the film that shows the previous hits committed by Kong and the various victims he killed.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: In some of the flashbacks depicting Kong’s rise as a hitman, and the shooting gallery scene.
  • Disability Superpower: Kong’s deafness allows him an exceptional advantage when shooting, because he does not react to the gunshots.
  • Dutch Angle: Used in quite a few scenes, especially in the subway as Kong prepares to execute a target, the restaurant massacre as Kong marches down a corridor, and the final scene when policemen are surrounding Kong and the mob boss.
  • Guns Akimbo: Kong in the restaurant massacre, emulating Mark Gor from A Better Tomorrow.
  • Handicapped Badass: Kong, the main character, is a deaf-mute Professional Killer.
  • Human Notepad: Kong, after Hon writes her name, contact details, address, and setting for their next date on both his arms, due to Kong being a deaf-mute who doesn’t know how to communicate with her. He spends his whole night looking at her writing all over both his arms and thinking of her.
  • Kensington Gore: The blood in this movie appears to use really thick, cranberry syrup for its blood effects, given the number of close-ups on pooling puddles of blood after Kong performed his hits.
  • The Lancer: Joe, childhood best friend of Kong.
  • Laser Sight: In the climax which is a Darkened Building Shootout between Kong and the mob boss’ thugs, he managed to spot his opponents by finding their pistol’s laser pointers being shone on walls or the ceiling.
  • Leap and Fire: Kong does this in the ending shootout, to gun down a shotgun-toting mook.
  • Leave the Camera Running: All over the place. The movie is full of panning shots, scenes where the camera just follows characters around with long pauses without dialogue, shots pointed at static objects or backgrounds that just stays there, Extreme Close-Up on character’s faces which lasts for more than 10 seconds… without these added scenes, the movie would’ve been over in around an hour.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: Both Kong and Joe.
  • Match Cut: During one of his first assassinations, Kong is prepping his sniper rifle on his first target, which is intercut with a little girl on an adjacent balcony firing a Finger Gun on the target, oblivious to Kong’s presence. As the girl did a "shooting" motion on her fingers, Kong pulls his trigger at the same time, and the scene is edited to look like the child’s fingers shot the target through the eye.
  • Moe Greene Special: The target Kong shoots early on in the movie, through his glasses.
  • Mugging the Monster: During their romantic night out, Kong and Fon ends up getting mugged by two robbers, one who holds Fon at knifepoint while the other searches Kong for his valuables. When the second robber finds Kong’s pistol, Kong quickly snatches his pistol back and shoots both robbers dead.
  • No Name Given: The Big Bad, a mob boss that is never identified by name.
  • One-Hit Polykill: Kong and the mob boss dies together when he puts a bullet through both their heads put together.
  • Pastel-Chalked Freeze Frame: Sometimes when Kong is about to execute someone, the screen stops either on his face screaming or him pulling his trigger towards the camera, and completely freezes, before cutting to the next scene.
  • Pretty Little Headshots: Happens throughout the movie, but most notably when Kong fires a single shot through his head and the mob boss’.
  • Rape as Drama: Aom, after spurning a henchman working for the boss, ends up being raped for her troubles.
  • Shooting Gallery: Kong’s flashback depicts him honing his shooting skills in a shooting gallery, where he managed to score every hit by imagining his childhood bullies to be the targets.
  • Slow Motion: Often occurs in shootouts, especially when mooks shot by Kong would slowly float towards the ground as they fall.
  • Spoiler Cover: The poster for the Toronto International Film Festival release explicitly shows Kong holding his pistol to the side of his head. Like this.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Between Kong, a mute assassin, and Fon, a pharmacy store worker.
  • Stylistic Suck: The childhood flashback for Kong and Joe is deliberately fuzzy and grainy, seemingly as if it was filmed using old cameras from the 70s, complete with digital patches all over the screen throughout the scene.
  • Taking You with Me: In the final confrontation, Kong had killed everyone and is holding the mob boss down when police arrive to surround the area. Kong promptly puts his head and the boss’ together and fires a single shot through their heads.

Bangkok Dangerous (2008) provides examples of:

  • Abled in the Adaptation: Nicolas Cage’s Joe, the Expy to Kong from the original, isn’t a deaf-mute assassin.
  • Actionized Adaptation: There are more shootouts, fight scenes, and action in this version than the 1999 original, including a boat chase, another extended assassination in a pool, and a longer climatic shootout with more faceless mooks Joe had to kill before confronting Surat.
  • Adaptational Distillation: Instead of the protagonist, this time it’s Fon, the Love Interest, who is a deaf-mute.
  • An Arm and a Leg: The boat chase assassination ends with Joe flipping his boat’s propeller around, removing his target’s arm in the process.
  • Blood Is Squicker in Water: During the scene where Joe executes his target in the floating market, Joe puts four bullets through his target which penetrates the bottom of the motorboat, leaving behind red-tainted bullet streaks underwater.
  • Call-Back: To the original.
    • Fon works at a pharmacy store, and invites Joe to her house for dinner.
    • The romantic date between Joe and Fon is interrupted by a pair of muggers, which Joe dispatches effortlessly like Kong in the earlier version.
    • The final shootout of both movies takes place in a water-bottling plant.
    • Joe kills the Big Bad, Surat, and himself together using the same method Kong used to execute the unnamed mob boss, by putting their heads together and firing a single shot for a One-Hit Polykill.
  • Code of Honour: Joe abides to his own personal set of rules, which he spells out right at the start of the movie before his first onscreen hit:
    "One: Don't ask questions. There is no such thing as right and wrong. "
    "Two: Don't take an interest in people outside of work. There is no such thing as trust. "
    "Three: Erase every trace. Come anonymous and leave nothing behind. "
    "Four: Know when to get out. Just thinking about it means it's time. Before you lose your edge, before you become a target. "
  • Darker and Edgier: And also Bloodier and Gorier.
  • Death Montage: Same as the original movie, although Joe’s hits are more varied and involves him killing European and American mobsters as well, due to the character being changed to an international-based hitman.
  • Demoted to Extra: Aom in the remake only have a bit part, compared to the original, and plays no part in setting up the finale.
  • Four Is Death: Joe abides to four codes of honour. Take a wild guess to see if he outlives the credits.
  • Guns Akimbo: Joe uses dual pistols in the final shootout, and takes out multiple mooks in short order.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: In the final shootout, an Elite Mook takes on Joe directly and managed to pin him down for a few seconds, until Joe shoves a grenade into his opponent’s belt and slams the mook into a wall. The explosion cuts said mook into half from the waist in a rather messy way.
  • Human Traffickers: Surat, the Big Bad of the remake, specializes in trafficking young girls, a plot element absent from the original.
  • Leave No Survivors: Joe, unlike Kong from the previous version who have a best friend for backup, instead prefers to hire local small-time pickpockets or criminals as local help. When the assassination is complete, Joe then offs his new helper before moving on to the next mission.
  • Make It Look Like an Accident: Joe executes his hired help in this manner. His second onscreen kill, which is his helper from an assassination mission in Prague, gets knocked out non-lethally before Joe pumps drugs into his veins to make his death look like an overdose.
  • Mythology Gag: This time, Joe is The Hero and protagonist, while Kong is Joe’s sidekick and partner, a reverse of the original version.
  • Precision F-Strike: Joe’s sidekick, Kong, drops an F-bomb, but in Thai.
    Kong: [in Thai] "Duck fucker!"