9 Satra: The Legend of Muay Thai
Time Out says
An animated film that proves filmmakers and animators are not cut from the same cloth
Some of Thailand’s very best animators—with a handsome budget of 230 million baht—have started 2018 on a high with the opening of what could possibly be the best Thai animated film ever made: 9 Satra: The Legend of Muay Thai.
9 Satra tells the story of Aod, a young man who’s been ingrained with a duty to train in muay Thai for many days and nights so to be able to retrieve 9 Satra, a special armor, to save Rapthep City from monstrous giants. Along the journey, he befriends a monkey, a giant and a Chinese pirate girl, who all join him on his adventure. The plot is simple and—you don’t need to guess—it’s a happy ending.
Motion graphics-wise, 9 Satra lives up to the hype, boasting a world-class quality and impressive artwork—behind every rendered image are the hard work and tears of Thai animators. The musical score is also worth noting, created by Hollywood-based composer, Ryan Shore, and performed by a full orchestra band. Everything seems perfect, except for a few significant points.
The storyline was developed from a loose, boring plot that we’ve seen millions of times before, a travesty that was all the more enhanced by weak character development. The Thai voice dubbing is poorly done, giving off a sound quality that feels like a cheap TV program for kids. And last but not least, there are too many inconsequential scenes, many of which resemble scenes from Hollywood movies and other animated flicks. Obviously, the movie was made by animators and not filmmakers.
All in all, 9 Satra isn’t a bad film. It’s probably worth paying B200 to see it in the movie house. It would undoubtedly appeal to a foreign market. But if its producers are expecting international awards, then they will be sorely disappointed.