In the opening scene of The Raid we see a man preying, speaking to his pregnant wife and then telling his Father “I’ll bring him back”. That’s all the background you get before one of the most violent films I have ever seen begins in earnest.
Rama (Iko Uwais) is part of an elite group of cops who are about to launch an assault on a tower block run by a feared local gangster. Every floor harbours lethal fugitives and Rama and the team must use all their skills if they are to survive.
Full of spectacular gun battles and fight scenes this Indonesian production was directed by Welshman Gareth Evans. Be warned though, the violence here is hardcore with every fight ending in at least one gruesome death by way of gun, knife, fist, feet or anything that the participants find lying around.
The Raid has more bullets than The Expendables, better fights than Ong –Bak and as good a location as District 13, but the overall experience is hampered by the lack of build-up. There is little emotional investment in Rama and the final fight with three participants is far too long, it borders on ridiculous and almost spoils what has gone before. Almost.
The Raid is in UK cinemas now and is known as The Raid: Redemption in the USA.
Ric’s Rating: Highly Recommended.