Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Raid -- An Indonesian Movie

Source: here (there are excerpts of the film too!)

After hearing all the buzz about The Raid, I went to the cinema and watched it last Tuesday. Everyone who had watched the movie already warned me about how bloody and brutal the film is and I thought I was more than prepare to watch it . 

After all, I spent my childhood watching action movies like Rocky, Rambo, Bloodsport and Kickboxer (the credit goes to D). When I was a kid, my favorite actors included Jean Claude Van Damme, Sasha Mitchell and Michael Dudikoff.
But I digress. Back to The Raid.

Directed by Welsh man Gareth Huw Evans, all of the movie's cast are Indonesians, including lead actor Iko Uwais, who previously starred in Merantau (Migration) and in this movie plays the rookie Rama. Joining Iko in the cast are veteran actor Ray Sahetapy who plays the drug lord Tama, Donny Alamsyah plays Andi, Tama's right-hand man, former judo athlete-turned-actor Joe Taslim as team commander Jaka and Pierre Gruno as the Lieutenant who leads the squad.

The 100-minute long movie tells the story of a SWAT team tasked with raiding an isolated building to arrest a notorious drug lord. Stuck inside the dilapidated building filled with ferocious criminals, the team must find a way out through every floor. It's fight or die.

The action is not only shown through the gunfight, but also machete, baton, knives and barehand fights (featuring deadly moves from Indonesian martial arts pencak silat). As Mad Dog (a cold-blooded enforcer played by Yayan Ruhian) said,"I prefer (to kill) with my barehand. It feels more raving (than with guns)", you can imagine how ruthless the climactic throw-down is between Rama, Andi and Mad Dog. Mad Dog is like a killing machine with Energizer batteries that just don't die easily.

By the way, last Tuesday, the hashtag #MadDog became a Trending Topic in Indonesia's Twitter Timeline, which gave me another reason to go :). 

My only disappointment is: the movie features so many muscled men, but why does none of them bare their chest? Director Evans, this is a special request from a woman who loves watching a good action movie and appreciate a six-pack abs. Ahem.

The movie has won several awards, such as "The Cadillac People's Choice Award" for the category of Midnight Madness at the 36th Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in 2011 as well as "The Best Film" and "Audience Award" at Jameson Dublin International Film Festival. It has been screened at various international film festivals, including at the 2012 South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference and Festival recently in Texas, the U.S.

Something to wait in the near future: the remake of The Raid is already in the pipeline.

And now, let me give you a few ideas for this upcoming long weekend:
-- L'amore Ritorna, an Italian movie to be screened at Istituto Italiano di Cultura on Saturday at 4 p.m.
-- Exhibition of Now and When: Kota Masa Depan by Australian Embassy, held at Pacific Place Mall's Ground Floor from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., until April 24
-- Concert of Olivia Newton-John on April 8 at Grand Ballroom Hotel Mulia. My marketing manager offered me a free ticket to this concert (she's the one who gave me free tickets to the 2012 Java Jazz too. That's very nice of her!). Unfortunately, I can't go.
-- Easter Charity Bazaar. April 7-10, Function Hall, Level 2. Plaza Indonesia
-- Or you can watched The Raid :).

I will head to the northern coastline of Central Java and do some island hopping in Karimun Jawa islands. I hope the weather permits. Have a loving long weekend, people! 


  1. Iko jagoanku! Iko jagoanku!!! Setuju mba Tifa, minusnya film the raid adalah ga ada yang pamer badan kecuali Iko Uwais di awal-awal film :p

  2. Jagoanku Donny Alamsyah, sayangnya dia main jadi antagonis di The Raid :(. Wah Iko pamer badan di awal film? Aku telat 15 menit soalnya, harus nonton lagi nih berarti, hmmm :P