Matt Pais, @mattpais
RedEye movie critic
March 22, 2012
**1/2 (out of four)
To summarize “The Raid: Redemption” in one word: “Yahhhhhhhhhh!!!”
That nasal wail permeates every moment of this Indonesian martial arts flick, which features only third-hand dialogue in which people actually form sentences, not screams. Despite a pregnant wife at home, Rama (Iko Uwais) and his fellow cops do their duty and bust into a dilapidated building where a drug lord named Tama (Ray Sahetapy) has holed up and overseen the infestation of each unit with violent lowlifes. Note: “Redemption” was originally just called “The Raid.” If they had to change the title, why not: “The Raid: Rama vs. Tama”?
Writer-director Gareth Evans absolutely delivers well-choreographed fight sequences and creative killings. Those who drool at a spine cracked over a railing or a head smashed over a broken door should bring a bib. Those who want more than just standard good guys and bad guys and a constant stream of blood and bullets will be twiddling their thumbs, waiting for everyone to die. An axe to the chest will always get a reaction, but when every battle goes on for so long, “Redemption” has the effect of spending too much time on the treadmill: Tiring and monotonous.
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