The great thing about Thailand's 2006 martial arts thriller, Kon fai bin — or Dynamite Warrior — is that it takes as much from American cinema as it does from Hong Kong. Besides being vaguely modeled after a high-noon Western flick, it also follows the American tradition of filling in weak plot and character holes with explosions — lots and lots of explosions.
The flick plays a lot like Kevin Costner's early-'90s Robin Hood. Jone Bang Fai is an infamous cattle thief who uses an array of rockets and mad fighting skills to take on whole caravans of cattle traders. Come to find out Jone is stealing cows from the rich and giving them to the poor. Then there is the Sheriff of Nottingham character, who's also stealing buffalo as part of a devious plan to control the tractor market (very complicated Thai economics). He's supported by the Black Wizard, who's a lot like that freaky witch that Morgan Freeman spears at the end of the Costner version. Throw in the menstrual blood of a virgin Maid Marion, and you basically have a carbon copy; just trade the bows and arrows for flying knee kicks and — oh, yeah — lots of explosions.
Catch Dynamite Warrior Friday and Saturday night during Midnight Madness at the Esquire Theatre, 590 Downing Street; all seats are $7. For more information, call 303-352-1992 or click here.
Get the Film Club Newsletter
Stay up to date on the best new movies with our critics' latest reviews, interviews and trailers for the films coming to a theater near you each week.