To raise the enticement level, I’m just going to step right out and say that Gareth Evan’s The Raid: Redemption is everything you could possibly want out of an action film. It’s what dreams are made of; it’s ultra-violent, ultra-sleek, and a damn good ride. To delve deeper into the spectacle that is the The Raid, then hit the jump.
The Raid: Redemption is the story of “an elite special-forces team sent on a covert mission involving the extraction of a brutal crime lord from a rundown fifteen-story apartment block”. When I first heard the plot, I naturally assumed that the film could have easily tread on waters previously discovered. How many films involve a SWAT team extracting a deadly fiend from his heavily guarded lair? Isn’t that every Jason Stathem movie? (seriously)
But where The Raid differs is evident when the SWAT van tires peel up to the fifteen-story pile of filth and wreckage. The door swings open and shit goes off.
If you’re looking for a pure thrill ride, with little to no fluff, then this movie is for you. The action is timed down to the smallest fraction of a second. Each scene leaves you dipping forward out of your seat more than the last. You’ll claw at the arm rest, you’ll grin with excitement, your heart will cheer, and your mind will be blown. Think Oldboy, but with more style and less gross-out violence for the sake of gross-out violence.
It’s a pure adrenaline rush, and it’s big in part due to the silent but deadly Iko Uwais, who plays Rama, our protagonist. If this guy and Jet Li had to fight to the death, then Li’s face would be caved in before he could blink. I don’t know where this guy came from, but I’m glad he’s here. Iko Uwais, teamed up with Gareth Evans, really make this film something to see.
I have to now bite my tongue and avoid going any further into the film than I already have. Just know that it’s a thrill ride from start to finish, with each scene topping the last so effortlessly. If you’re a fan of back breaking, jaw shattering, knife wealding hand-to-hand combat, then buy your ticket, cause The Raid: Redemption is it.
THE FINAL VERDICT:
It does what it set out to: entertain and engage.