I usually try to keep a certain decorum while in a theater (no talking, cell phone off, etc.) but while watching this movie I and the six other people in the theater couldn’t help but to hoot and holler during the 90 minutes of nonstop action that is The Raid: Redemption. This is the best pure action movie I’ve seen in years.
Iko Uwais stars as Rama, a rookie cop and soon to be father. He is a member of a 20 man SWAT team charged with the task of raiding an apartment building run by local crime lord Tama (Ray Sahetapy) and his two lieutenants, Andi (Donny Alamsyah ) and Mad Dog (Yayan Ruhian). The characters are one dimensional and the plot is paper thin but there is just enough storytelling to get the average action fan from one action scene to the next.
These action scenes are why you want to see this movie. The action starts with some John Woo style gunplay then mixes in some brutal knife work, and throws in a grenade or two. When the ammo runs out, fight choreographers Uwais and Ruhian get to shine. The fight scenes are beautifully brutal and completely exhilarating. Using anything from fists and feet to hammers and chairs, and even florescent bulbs, the individual fights as creative and memorable. As intense as these scenes are, director Gareth Evans does a good job of not getting too focused on one set of officers and forgetting the rest. The action scenes are edited in a way that allows the viewer to keep track of what is going on throughout the building.
The Raid: Redemption certainly won’t be for everyone. It caters to a very specific type of audience. Those who want a story driven narrative should stay away. Those who want an adrenaline-fueled balls-to-the-wall action fun fest should rush out to see it.
Check out our latest podcast where we talk more in depth about The Raid: Redemption here