Bangkok Dangerous

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Can an international hit man working one last assignment in Thailand leave his history of assassinations behind and find true love with a deaf drugstore clerk? Of course not. That’s all you really need to know about Bangkok Dangerous, a very loose American remake of the 1999 Thai thriller by its original directors, the Hong Kong-born siblings Danny and Oxide Pang. Nicolas Cage is in full-on sad-eyed killer mode as he glares out at the world from the middle of a wild, unwashed mullet, contemplating his professional disposition against meaningful human contact in sleepy voiceover. Once he takes a young street thug under his wing and starts wooing a pretty shop girl, it’s clear the hardened killer has gone soft. This is a dark film visually and thematically, with a bracingly downbeat climax. But it lacks narrative coherence or strong action scenes — only a rousing motorboat chase that has the city’s canals running red with blood halfway through the film leaves any impression. Unfortunately, the brothers’ stylish reputation doesn’t seem to have survived the journey stateside — counting this and last year’s forgettable horror outing The Messengers, the Pangs have made two of the most generic movies in recent memory. C-

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