'Fireball' flames out before there's even a spark

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sometimes a film has a premise so overtly ridiculous that it lends to the allure of it and makes it something special to watch. When I read about a film that mixed ultra-violence and basketball, I was onboard. And while I knew it wouldn't be an Oscar contender, I thought it might be interesting.

Boy, was I wrong.

It's clear within the first few minutes of the film it will offer little more than over the top violence and it doesn't improve from there. What makes this film even more puzzling is the fact that it's the action that really fails the film. The storyline is solid, but it's the other elements that add up to make this flick a complete dud.

Recently released from prison, Tai discovers that his twin brother Tan is in a coma after being beaten. Tai assumes his brother's identity and takes to the task of finding out who's responsible for his brother's condition. He's soon recruited on one of the fireball teams, which provides him the best opportunity to take his revenge.

"Fireball," in a nutshell, is a no-holds-barred variant of basketball where a team can do just about anything to prevent their opposition from scoring. The first team to score wins and advances in the tournament. Controlled by gang bosses, fireball is a big moneymaking enterprise and everyone wants a piece of the pie. Now, Tai has to stay in the game long enough and move up the ranks in order to avenge his brother.

This was one of the most difficult films I've watched in a long time. Overall, it's disjointed and relies too heavily on its action and that turns out to be its ultimate downfall. The moments that happen between the action are rushed to get back to the bloody kicks and vicious elbows that make up fireball.

The only DVD feature on the disc is a behind the scenes featurette, which is actually a little more interesting that the film itself.

Final Cut: "Fireball" is an uneven mess that never adds up to anything special or watchable. At one point, I actually turned the subtitles and English track off in hopes that it would make the movie somewhat tolerable. I found no element of this film worthy of a watch.

.5 out of 5 stars


Starring: Preeti Barameeanat, Khanutra Chuchuaysywan, Kumpanat Oungsoongnern, Phutharit, Prombandal

Director: Thanakorn Pongsuwan

Writer: Thanakorn Pongsuwan, Kiat Sansanandana, Taweewat Wantha, Adirek Wattaleela

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: