When the head of his village's holy statue is stolen, Ting (Jaa) volunteers to travel to Bangkok and retrieve it, thus returning good fortune to his village. In Bangkok he is reunited with a fellow villager, Humlae (Wongkamlao), who has turned his back on his traditional upbringing for a squalid life of drug-dealing in the big city's underworld. Together the pair set out to find the head of Ong-bak, but it's not long before they fall foul of the criminal gang that is smuggling Thailand's priceless statues out of the country. Ong-bak's tagline reads: 'No stunt doubles, no computer images, no strings attached', which can be read as an ever-so-slightly bitchy reference to the extensively choreographed art-house ballets of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and House of Flying Daggers; Pinkaew's film is very obviously a return to the old school of chop-socky punch-'em-ups, although that doesn't mean the action is any more plausible. Jaa takes on hordes of baddies during his odyssey, employing practically every weapon available to the Muay Thai tradition of martial arts, but after an hour of chase scenes, fight club bouts and alleyway routs, the relentless action begins to grow monotonous. A shame, really, because Jaa is a likeable star, and Wongkamlao turns in a fine comic turn as his chubby, cowardly sidekick.