SPL 2: A Time for Consequences (Saat po long 2) (2015)
Trailer-More from Eastern Eye x 4
|Year Of Production||2015|
|Running Time||115:11 (Case: 120)|
|RSDL / Flipper||Dual Layered||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Pou-Soi Cheang|
Kwong Wing Chan
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||Cantonese Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||2.35:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||2.35:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English (Burned In)||Smoking||Yes|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Chatchai (Tony Jaa) is a guard in the Bangkok prison run by Warden Ko Hung (Zhang Jin). He has an eight year old daughter who is dying from a form of leukaemia; she needs a bone marrow transplant to survive but as compatible donors are rare while waiting she lives on expensive drugs that Chatchai can hardly afford. In Hong Kong Kit (Wu Jing) is an undercover cop placed by Detective Chan Kwok-wah (Simon Yam), who is also his uncle, inside a crime syndicate engaged in live human and organ trafficking. While undercover Kit has become hooked on drugs and is fighting the addiction while trying to bring the syndicate down. Crime boss Hung Mun-gon (Louis Koo) is dying from a heart disease and needs a transplant but he has such a rare blood type only his brother Hung Mun-biu (Kung Jun) is a suitable match. Warden Ko and crime boss Hung have connections and the Bangkok prison is also used to hold individuals who have been kidnapped in Honk Kong and shipped to Bangkok to be held in secret awaiting the arrival of the organ recipient so that surgery can be performed. In a rather convoluted series of events all the main characters end up in Bangkok for a showdown, and the consequences of their actions.
SLP 2: A Time for Consequences (Saat po long 2) is not connected in any way with the original SPL (2005) which featured Donnie Yen and Sammo Hung; although both Wu Jing and Simon Yam are in both films they play different characters. SLP 2: A Time for Consequences in its own right is a film with a soul which includes some of the most full on and intense action sequences you can see. This is due to the presence of Thai action star Tony Jaa, who came to prominence with the fabulous Ong Bak (2003) and has seldom looked back since, Zhang Jin, who was impressive in The Grandmaster (2013), and Wu Jing. These men are genuine martial artists, which allows director Cheang Pou-Soi to avoid extreme close-ups or quick inter-cutting in fights and instead to allow the camera to see the actors doing their thing. The climax at the all-white medical facility between the three is breathtaking but there are also excellent earlier action sequences including the mayhem of an all in prison fight, a gunfight in a ferry terminal and a fight involving knives, pipes and hatchets.
Unlike some action films, SLP 2: A Time for Consequences does have a soul. Tony Jaa, who has bulked up a bit, shows that he can act and the scenes with his daughter (an excellent young actress whose name I didn’t catch) are both funny and sad, giving heart to the picture and making the choices faced by his character believable and difficult. It is true that the plotting of the film is very contrived, with holes you could drive a bus through, while the ending is inconclusive and bewildering to say the least. I think I understand it, but I would not be sure of what the film is trying to achieve here or the fate of a number of the characters. Yet, with the fabulous action sequences martial arts fans will not feel short changed!
SLP 2: A Time for Consequences is presented in the original aspect ratio of 2.35:1 and is 16x9 enhanced. The DVD cover states that this is an NTSC formatted disc; this is incorrect, it is certainly PAL.
Shot utilising Red Epic cameras SLP 2: A Time for Consequences has beautiful, deep detail is both close-ups and wide shots. The colours are very digitally glossy and bright, even garish in places, while the print also evinces that digital yellowish tinge under lights which does impact on skin tones as well. Blacks are solid throughout, shadow detail good, brightness and contrast consistent.
I did not see any marks however the beginning and end titles shimmer (as they are in a small text they are almost unreadable) and there is rather too frequent aliasing against bars, grills or buildings.
The white English subtitles were burnt in, easy to read and error free. They did stay on for sentences in English.
The layer chance at 57:55 resulted in a slight pause following a scene change.
Audio is a Cantonese Dolby Digital 5.1 track at 448 Kbps, although there were extensive sections in Thai.
Dialogue was easy to hear and centred, except when it was spoken off screen when the rears came into use. The surrounds and rears also featured music, crashes and thumps during the action sequences, thunder and rain effects. The gunshots and breaking glass had a nice resonance while the sub-woofer added bass to the music and action scenes.
The score by Ken Chan and Kwong Wing Chan was portentous, using choral sections and epic orchestral cues which suggested a significance the film’s plot did not support. Sections of percussion during fights were more effective.
Lip synchronisation was fine.
|Surround Channel Use|
Eight deleted / extended scenes, many quite long (ranging between 3:27 and 0:53 minutes). There is no text or introduction to the scenes but most have parts of existing scenes so that you can tell where they fit. As well, they play in the order they would have appeared in the film. Some are quite interesting, providing more background for Kit and his relationship with Kwok-wah, or an extended sequence of Kit being tortured in prison, while one scene explains the drowning young girl in the opening title sequence. One can see why most were cut for pacing reasons but there are some that would have been good in the film.
Trailers for The Silent War (2:08), The Suspect (2:37), The Protector 2 (2:20) and Ip Man – The Legend is Born (2:06).
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The only other DVD release of SLP 2: A Time for Consequences I can find listed at the moment is a Region 3 Thai version which is not English friendly.
There are enough backstories and contrivances in SLP 2: A Time for Consequences for an eight part HBO series and the ending is ambiguous, to say the least. However, in an era where CGI and fast cutting and in-close camera angles cloak the “fighting” ability of action stars, SLP 2: A Time for Consequences has some of the most intense and brutal action sequences you will see this year thanks to the genuine fighting skills of Tony Jaa, Zhang Jin and Wu Jing. As well, if you like some soul mixed with the action, you should give SLP 2: A Time for Consequences a chance.
The video and audio are fine, the deleted scenes worthwhile.
|DVD||Sony BDP-S580, using HDMI output|
|Display||LG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.|
|Audio Decoder||NAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.|
|Speakers||Studio Acoustics 5.1|