The Raid: Redemption
Action (Martial Arts)
Running Time: 101 minutes
Starring: Iko Uwais, Joe Taslim, Donny Alamsyah, Yayan Ruhian
Directed By: Gareth Evans
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
A SWAT team is trapped in a building and must fight its way out or die.
When I liken a movie Die Hard meets Ong Bak you know this is going to be a pretty bad ass flick. This movie was bad ass and more. Not since John McClane was stuck in Nakatomi Plaza has a cop movie been this awesome. The Raid: Redemption is the story of a cop SWAT team trying to arrest the local criminal kingpin. The problem is he is locked at the top of a high rise building and there are many floors of criminals to pass to get to him.
A film with a story that is basically a real world telling of the Donkey Kong video game could never work right? You will quickly find out that is not the case. This film has the simplest of intros before the SWAT team heads to the building to capture the criminal boss. There are no extended dialogue scenes. There is very little relationship story. It just gets right to the point and that is more than okay. Everything is great in this film. The apartment building that the cops are raiding is old and derelict and criminals can be behind virtually any door. This rundown building is a perfect venue for close quarter fighting, be it with hands, stabbing implements, or guns. This film will hit you like an EpiPen to the chest it is so action packed and adrenaline producing. What was supposed to be a routine raid quickly turns into a battle for survival as the cops must find a way out of the building. The action, just to warn you is quite realistic, so cut throats, blood spray, stabbings, and any other type of injury you can imagine will probably happen at least once in this film.
The film is subtitled and so it is hard to gauge if the acting is exceptional or below par. What I can tell you it is very passable for a film like this. While there may not be an as memorable scene where a cop drags his cut up feet and yells Hans!!! This film is no less than awesome. The lead character a cop named Rama is played by actor Iko Uwais. He will be a person to be remembered as I am sure he will be showing up quite frequently throughout the next few years in action films. He is quick, has the look, and can pull off virtually any action sequence. Other action stand outs to take note of are actors Joe Taslim, Donny Alamsyah, and Yayan Ruhian. These guys all have the fighting techniques to have great action careers.
The film can be a little repetitive and some of the scenes seem to go on longer then they should. That being said, what you’re watching are visually stunning high action sequences so it is never hard to watch. The camera work is phenomenal. Instead of hundreds of edits like most North American film action sequences this film lets you enjoy the shot. Very few cuts are imparted on the viewer making the fight scenes incredible. The story is weak but who cares when everything else is going on. You follow the cop Rama and his team from floor to floor and eagerly anticipate the next fight scene. It is shocking to me that people don't get hurt making these films as they are literally bouncing off walls and differing types of furniture. At the end of the day this is one of the best action films in recent memory. There are scenes in this movie that make the Old Boy (movie) hammer scene look PG-13. As the body count piles up and the broken limbs and vicious wounds multiply you will wonder why all movies don’t follow this formula to greatness.
Director and Writer Gareth Evans has put together a fantastic film. His use of high impact action sequences and great camera work is second to none. The fight scenes are amazingly choreographed and the casting was no less than perfect. The story or lack thereof will be hit or miss but I liked its simplicity. The film has you gripped from the first fight scene and doesn’t let you go until the last drop of blood has been spilt.
This movie is a huge recommendation especially to action and martial arts lovers.
T Factor + If you like Kung Fu movie this could score higher on the rating scale.
T Factor – If you need a strong story in your films this could score lower on the rating scale.
If you liked this film reel recommendations: The Protector, Ong Bak