Movie Title: Serbuan maut / The Raid / The Raid: Redemption
Director: Gareth Evans
Date Released: September 8th, 2011 (Toronto International Film Festival)
Date Seen: June 2nd, 2013
Language/Country of Origin: Indonesia
Part 1 – Spoiler Free Quickie Review
Not a bad action movie, but not the best either. There are some super cool characters while some super annoying characters. The premise is what sucked me in and the fight scenes are what kept me there. We follow a police raid on a building owned by a crime lord. Things don’t go as planned and they end up trapped in the building, with no way out, and everyone in the building hunting them down. Will they get out? Who knows, but there sure as hell will be a lot of blood and guts being spilled.
In line with epic fight scenes, the hallway scene was pretty amazing. I still think I prefer the Oldboy hallway scene, but this one was pretty good too. This hallway scene felt like an episode of Scooby Doo, where people just keep running out of random hallways. My second favorite fight scene was in the drug warehouse. There are some other great fight scenes, so don’t worry, you’ll get tons of them. Luckily the main guy is a pretty good fake fighter and there’s a lot of kind of kicking/hitting/macheting. Enough to keep you satisfied. There’s also an extremely high number of back breaking or near breaking. I don’t know if it was the directors thing or the fight choreographers thing, but get used to it. One character, Mad Dog (Yayan Ruhian) is the most nimble little man I have ever seen. I loved watching him fight, because he did the most insane tricks, kicking himself up walls, etc. There’s a scene where he takes on two guys at once and he is awesomely fun to watch. Pay attention to him in any fight scenes he’s in because that man is a beast (just like they say he is). According to imdb, that guy is actually a profession martial arts instructor and has been for over 25 years. So that makes sense. The movie has a habit of using silence (like that muffled silence that happens after a bomb goes off) in a very annoying way. There’s no point to it and it really could be used on more fight scenes. The fight scenes are already pretty epic, so why ruin them with a fight scene with some slow boring silence?
It doesn’t have a lot of back story, other than 3 annoying minutes at the beginning that you just wish were over, but otherwise, it’s pretty action packed. The movie lacks re-watch-ability, in my opinion, because of this. They are great fight scenes that I’d watch again, with friends, having a good time, but not one that I’d just sit down and watch again on my own.
Part 2 – In Depth Spoiler Ridden Review/Synopsis
There’s a decent synopsis here.
The minor character development at the beginning that I didn’t give a shit about. That’s not why I watched this movie. Get to the action. Luckily, it lasted less than 3 minutes.
The first couple of deaths cracked me up. The idiot who gets his throat slit with a machete, was awesome. Then the truck driver who spits after he’s shot, and then him and his friend get mowed down, yes please. I also love how the people in the building secure the floors. They know exactly what they have to do even before the boss has given the order over the loudspeaker. Other awesome parts where when a couple of guys climbed up a wall with machete’s in their mouths. We get some cliches, like a Wilhelm scream pretty early on and then later they try to dig a bullet out of someone, which we all know is not necessary except in rare cases.
I will say that that old guy leading the cops in, was such a dick the whole time and so fucking stupid, I was glad when he tried to kill himself. Then even happier when it didn’t work and that SOB has to face everything like a big boy. Highly satisfying. And side note – when Andi is leading them out, they cut to his shoes – how the HELL does he not have blood on his beautiful white shoes? That fight with Mad Dog was crazy bloody, not to mention the blood from killing those guys in the elevators, walking through the bloody hallways, the big cut on his hand, etc. But, you know, unimportant detail.
I liked it, would watch it again drunk with friends, but doesn’t have much repeat viewing. Lots of good fight scenes though, and one serious kick ass Indonesian man named Mad Dog.