Over the years as a film critic there are certain movies you hear about all the time but haven’t gotten around to seeing for whatever reason. 2011’s The Raid: Redemption is one of those films, which made it a perfect choice for this year’s Blind Spot series. Now I’ve seen it so let’s talk about it!

The Raid: Redemption is an Indonesian action film directed by Gareth Evans with a budget of under 1 million US dollars. Given how bloated and bland most action movies are with much larger budgets it’s impressive what they were able to accomplish.

There isn’t a ton of plot to the movie. Basically you have a squad that is ”raiding” an apartment complex run by local crime lord Tama Riyadi. As they go from level to level they experience different threats and the action moves forward.

If you are following me on twitter you know at first I was disappointed in the action (it had been hugely hyped up by friends over the years). The first act is mainly gun fighting not the martial arts masterwork I had heard so much about. In general I find gun fights to be rather boring because little strategy is involved just shoot and dead (this movie is insanely violent so know that going in.)

Part of the problem is the first part of the action is with snipers and a group of gunmen who attack the officers. However, as the movie goes it loses the guns and is more officers vs Tama’s men.

Probably one of the most effective scenes is when Rama (Iko Uwais) is fighting a machete gang through a hallway and into the main room (again violence warning in clip)

This film is not for someone who wants deep character development or plot. It’s merely to be enjoyed for the action- particularly the action in the last half of the movie. It’s easy to see why it created such a splash even if it does feel like a video game more than a movie at times.

Nevertheless, If you love action movies you’ve got to see The Raid: Redemption. 

7 out of 10

Smile Worthy

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