Wednesday, 26 November 2014
The Raid 2 (5 Stars)
Did you hear the one about the Welsh film director who made an Indonesian movie? That sounds like a joke, but it's serious. Gareth Evans went to Indonesia and loved the country so much that he didn't just make one film, he made three. This is the third, so far. Gareth has raised the bar in action adventures. Despite making films with relatively small budgets, they look spectacular, and the action sequences are breath-taking. What will he do if he's ever given a big budget?
"The Raid 2" begins immediately after the events of "The Raid". It involves Rama, the hero from the first film, being pronounced dead, so that he can be given a new identity and do undercover work for the police. To be more accurate, it's undercover work for a single police detective called Bunawar. The rest of the police force aren't told that Rama has survived, since Bunawar believes there are too many corrupt police officers in the force, on the payroll of one of the Jakarta gangs. It's a lengthy job. Rama has to spend two years in prison so that he can join one of the gangs when he comes out.
Even though his job is to work in a gang in order to expose the corrupt police officers, he begins to respect Bangun, his new boss, and takes his side when a power struggle breaks out within the gang. This situation escalates into an all out gang war with Rama caught in the middle. The action is over the top, with fight scenes following one another with barely a pause for breath.
The film ends on a cliff-hanger with many issues still unresolved. Let's see how it continues in "The Raid 3". Where will Gareth Evans take us from here? Can he give us even more action?