The gangster mafia style genre is one that doesn’t produce to many films these days in the US, but seems to still be pretty popular in the foreign film market. The latest aptly titled The Gangster comes from Thailand and features Thai-American pop star Krissada Sujosol Clapp, but does it successfully tell the historical crime tale that it hopes to?
The Gangster follows two friends in 1950s Bangkok who are hired by a local gang thanks to their ability in a street fight. As the years pass and they grow extremely more powerful and the violence gets more intense and bloody, one tries to move away from all the violence, but is pulled back in to take revenge on the younger up and coming members who have started all-out war. This film had everything it needed to really deliver a great gangster film, but gets lost in its own story at times. The film is interesting and the performances are decent enough, but it bounces around through the timeline as well as a strange interview aspect that makes it hard to really get into the journey and stick with it. There is plenty of action that is pretty bloody at times and effective, except when it comes to straight hand to hand fight scenes. There wasn’t enough attention taken to make these work effectively as opposed to the shoot outs and knife fights. The story itself is pretty interesting to see the direction these two friends take on their journey and the inner workings of these gangs. One of the more interesting aspects was seeing the transition from knives as the primary weapon to guns. You wouldn’t think it would have made that much of a difference but the ability to kill aster clearly stepped up the body count and shifted the power.
This isn’t a bad film, it just gets a bit convoluted at times due to some bad structure with the story and editing. There is a great movie here, but just needs a bit more refinement. Despite that it still works effectively and tells an interesting story that fans of this genre will probably still enjoy so give it a chance.