• James Rutherford

'The Raid': A Blistering and Relentless Indonesian Action Extravaganza


Movie poster for the Indonesian action film The Raid (2011)

The Raid (aka The Raid: Redemption) (2011) is a blistering and relentless Indonesian action extravaganza starring Iko Uwais as Rama, a Jakarta-based officer in the Mobile Brigade Corps ("Brimob"). Rama and his 20-man unit are tasked to infiltrate a soaring apartment block in order to take down a notorious crime lord named Tama Riyadi (Ray Sahetapy).


Representing the mobile tactical arm of the Indonesian National Police, the Brimob squad is led by Sergeant Jaka (Joe Taslim) and Lieutenant Wahyu (Pierre Gruno)—Jaka holding a personal grudge against Riyadi for his corruption of local police officials. Their team penetrates Riyadi's lair undetected and cautiously initiates their ascension toward his 15th floor command post, only to be furtively spotted by 6th floor lookouts. Speaking over the building's PA system, Riyadi announces a promise of permanent residence to anyone who can defeat the invading officers—opening the floodgates to an all-out assault on Rama and his compatriots.


Written and directed by Welsh filmmaker Gareth Evans (Apostle, Gangs of London), The Raid is a propulsive thrill-ride replete with astonishing set pieces and outlandish hand-to-hand fight sequences. Heavily showcasing the Indonesian martial art of Pencak Silat (Uwais' real-life specialty), Evans delivers handsomely in terms of inventiveness, dramatic tension and cinematic acumen. A high-octane escapade not for the faint of heart, it's an impressive advancement in both the action genre and international cinema altogether.

 

Watch the trailer: