13: Game of Death (13 game sayawng) (2006)

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Released 4-Feb-2009

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Black Comedy Main Menu Audio
Featurette-Making Of
Trailer
Teaser Trailer
Gallery-stills from film
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2006
Running Time 109:01
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (69:21) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Chukiat Sakveerakul
Studio
Distributor
Baa-Ram-Ewe
Madman Entertainment
Starring Krissada Terrence
Achita Wuthinounsurasit
Sarunyu Wongkrachang
Nattapong Arunnate
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI ? Music None Given


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None Thai Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Thai Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures Yes
Subtitles English Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement Yes, frequently
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Chit (Thai rock star Krissada Terrence) is an unsuccessful musical instrument salesman whose life is a mess. His mum is constantly on the phone begging for money to tide her over until his abusive father gets home. The lass his mum still thinks is his girlfriend has long left him. To top it all off, one of his more popular co-workers keeps stealing his clients and ruining his sales opportunities. It is no surprise when Chit's boss calls him in to fire him but the phone call he receives moments later is very much a surprise. An anonymous caller who is completely aware of his situation begins offering him increasing sums of money to performs unsavoury tasks as part of a live game-show, with the promise of a 100 Million Baht jackpot for the 13th task.

    The tasks start out squeamish but simple - kill and eat a fly, make some kids cry - but quickly become dangerous, revolting and even fatal. Furthermore, the police and a nosy co-worker are soon on his trail. All that seems to be little deterrent to Chit, who is like a donkey to a carrot every time he sees another astronomic sum land in his bank account. It certainly makes for a better game show than Who Wants to be a Millionaire.

    13: Game of Death (a somewhat more menacing English language title than the original title, 13 Beloved) is an exceedingly dark, and often gooey, black comedy from Thailand. The acting is terrible. The production values occasionally a little shaky. The story is outright preposterous and frequently hard to swallow (though not as hard to swallow as many of the things Chit winds up with in his mouth). Despite all this the movie is fairly entertaining once you get past the overlong 20-odd minutes of back story that it opens with, thanks to the truly twisted sense of humour that manages to pack something cringe-worthy in every scene.

    Much of the western advertising material is a little misleading as it makes the film out to be purely a thriller. It certainly has thriller aspects to it, but is far to silly to ever be taken as a serious thriller and will likely disappoint anyone expecting as much. Anyone expecting a very black comedy will likely enjoy this messy ride.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The film is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio, which (judging from the trailers on the disc) is an open matte of a theatrical 2.35:1 aspect ratio, and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The video generally looks good. The image is reasonably sharp. The colour is quite natural and the image features fairly good shadow detail. A few of the darker scenes and a couple of the effects shots are noticeably grainy, but this presents only a mild distraction.

    There is no sign of compression artefacts or any other video issues. One or two film artefacts are present throughout the film, though each is small and barely noticeable.

    Bold, yellow English subtitles are present for the feature. They are easy to read and appear to be well timed.

    This is a RSDL disc. The layer break occurs at 69:21 but was not noticeable on my equipment.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    Thai Dolby Digital 5.1 (448 Kbps), Thai Dolby Digital 2.0 (224 Kbps) audio tracks are present for the film.

    The audio tracks sound reasonably good, particularly considering that this is not a big budget Hollywood affair.

    The film features a rather bland and repetitive score that sits fairly flatly in the mix.

    The surrounds are overly busy with environmental effects. Whilst they certainly create an immersive atmosphere, the sheer amount of background stuff going on occasionally gets a little distracting. The subwoofer, however, barely registers an oomph.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Making Of Featurette (17:49)

    A bland subtitled "making of" featurette that spends too long recapping the story, and nearly half its running time talking to apathetic strangers coming out of a movie theatre having just seen the film. There are a couple of interesting minutes on the score production and stunts, but that is all that is worth seeing. This one is a real waste of time.

Teaser Trailer

    A Thai teaser trailer for the film, which sets the mood well without giving away any plot

Theatrical Trailer

    The Thai theatrical trailer for the film, which focuses on the bloodier aspects of the film.

Stills Gallery

    15 random frames from the movie. Pointless.

Madman Trailers

    Trailers for Monkey Magic, Infection, Big Man Japan and Born To Fight follow an annoying anti-piracy clip.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    The Region 1 edition is identical to the local release save for a few trailers for other films and obvious PAL/NTSC differences.

Summary

    A grisly black comedy that is worth a look once you get past its dull back story.

    Audio and Video are both decent. The extras package is slim.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Adam Gould (Totally Biolicious!)
Friday, March 20, 2009
Review Equipment
DVDSony Playstation 3, using HDMI output
Display Samsung 116cm LA46M81BD. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL).
Audio DecoderPioneer VSX2016AVS. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX2016AVS
Speakers150W DTX front speakers, 100W centre and 4 surround/rear speakers, 12 inch PSB Image 6i powered sub

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