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The Raid

May 30, 2012
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I didn’t know much (read, anything) about this film before I saw it but Dominic seemed up for it so I acquiesced. Thankfully, I was able to pick up most (read, the entire) plot from the title.

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The Raid is an Indonesian film directed by Welsh director Gareth Evans. It revolves around the raid (geddit!) of a police SWAT squad on a mob boss’ apartment complex. Things take a turn for the worse and the goal shifts from capturing the crime lord to simple survival. A few characters also have a couple of secrets that get revealed along the way.

That’s…pretty much it in terms of plot, and I’m being verbose. Not that I’m complaining. The film was still stunning to watch because what fills in the rest of the 90 minute running time is action. Guns, knives and martial arts all come together to hurt a lot of people in a very graphic fashion. It’s only fitting that the climax is a two-on-one fight in a locked concrete room. No distractions!

Despite being a beat-em-up, the film does a fine job of pacing. Contrasting against and lacing together high-adrenaline fight sequences are scenes of nail-biting tension. As the police numbers dwindle, they have to hide as much as they have fight against increasingly psychopathic criminals. The pace of the film feels a lot more organic than most Western action flicks. Although despite this, the film did feel a twinge too long.

So, if you’re looking for a well-made action film, and aren’t turned off by a mileau of gore, you could do far worse than watching The Raid. Since it’s Indonesian, with subtitles, you get bonus points for being cultural too.

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