Thanks to Madman Films we had the chance to see Gareth Evans’ The Raid, before its Australian cinematic release. This is our review of the film – but as usual – no matter what we say; we recommend that you still go to your local cinema and see the film because: There is no better critic than yourself!
The plot behind The Raid is very simple. A Swat Team gets assigned to infiltrate an apartment block in Jakarta controlled by the biggest crime and drug lord in the country, Tama Riyadi (Ray Sahetapy) who shares and rents every unit there to the worst kind of criminals in town, all of them extremely loyal to him .
Fifteen floors full of danger separate the Swat Team from their objective, all seems to work fine at the beginning until they get badly ambushed, with only few squad survivors, including Rama (Iko Uwais) who will do everything in order to survive, even using his martial arts skills when bullets are not enough.
This film, is a peculiar one because its plot gets lost under a sea of blood, bullets and amazing martial arts sequences, that instead of ruin the film, make it 3 times better, because The Raid‘s action is something that you don`t see every day, because includes gory scenes, long man to man fights, falls, creepy bad guys with machetes and some cool explosions around.
Lead actor, Iko Uwais (Recently casted as Kung Lao in the new upcoming Mortal Kombat film) gives a masterclass of martial arts the entire film using every single tool near him and obviously his hands, unleashing a total madness while combating against every single villain around the fifteen floors. There is even an amazing sequence where he fights alone a bunch of guys with machetes and knives, using only his police baton, reminding us that amazing scene with the hammer in 2003’s Oldboy.
Special mention to another character that for sure will be a cult one for a while, Mad Dog (Yayan Ruhian), who represents the most insane and bad ass villain in the film, a guy who enjoys kill people with his own hands no matter if he is out of number or if he can end the fight with a bullet. Ruhian, is another martial arts expert and he proves it twice in the film in 2 bloody (literally) marvellous fights, one including his final encounter with Rama which is one of the most brutal martial arts fights ever made!.
Thus, you can even say that The Raid is like a video game, because it starts with a team full of ammo in the first floors, then they must survive using knives, broken glass and machetes, until being forced to use their fists and limbs in a very clever and articulated chain of events, that sometimes include some few dramatic moments and twists on the plot.
Forget the plot!…who needs cheesy scenes or long dialogs if your life is in danger and there are 15 floors or guys with Machetes wanting to kill you?…If you like video games, gore, martial arts and wanna see one of the most brutal fights ever made, just run to your local cinema and see The Raid.
The Raid, will hit Australian cinemas next March 22, 2012.