I woke up from my afternoon nape on the couch. Quick car errand. Some internet time. Then off to Grand Cinema Warwick. I found out the other day a movie called The Raid was playing there. Never heard of it. I did see a poster for it that claimed it’s “The best action movie in decades”. So hell, why not.
I get to the theater at 6:30pm, the movie starts at 6:45pm, I’m not as early as I’d like, but I got a feeling this movie will not be busy. Up the escalator I find a huge line for tickets, oh crap! Then I remember why I didn’t think it would be busy, Hunger Games is out and everyone, EVERYONE, wants to see it. I too am curious for the mere fact that the films concept reminds me of a Japanese film I love called Battle Royale (2000). If you havn’t seen Battle Royale I’m sure you’ve seen one of it’s stars, Chiaki Kuriyama, in Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003) as Gogo Yubari (the Japanese school girl who attacks Uma Thurman).
“One for The Raid please.” And he replies, “Just one?”
I’m allowed into the theater with my one ticket, theater number four, time to pee first, then into the theater. As I enter the theater I see the screen, weird, the screen is really high up. It looks like they used a smaller theater screen in a bigger stadium seating theater and just raised it off the ground a story to trick us stupids.
Two couples in the theater so far, not bad. I find a good seat as well, good. Then more people come in. I have one buffer seat from me and the loud talking guy behind me (which I hope he stops when the movie starts) and I’m right at the edge to to close to the screen, so no one should sit in front of me. Each couple that enter I watch them hoping they leave this area alone. Four couples, a group of guys, and so far so good. Then the movie starts, one more couple dart in, sit right behind me, and start playing with plastic crunchy plasticy loud plastic!
The movie starts with no credits, no title cards, no distribution company logos, just the lights dim and we see a man praying quietly to himself in the wee quiet hours of the pre-morning, when everything is silent, except the man two rows back from me still talking loudly as if the trailers were on! Madness!
He finally queues in, shuts up (kinda), and as if they planed it, the plastic wrapped couple start up. Now I’m talking the first ten minutes or more of this movie is so quiet, which is cool, you really get the feel for how everything around the character is still asleep, you just here the very slight noises he makes, very effective, except for the self proclaimed film producer behind me who has decided with his infinite wisdom that the movie needed some mysterious figure off camera crunching up plastic grocery bags during this mans morning routine.
Whoa! The character in the film just started talking to his wive and it’s subtitled! I didn’t even know it was going to be! Hahaha! I have no problem watching subtitled films, but it’s funny to find out in the theater 15 minutes into the movie! No idea what language they are speaking.
Just Googled it, it’s an Indonesian film in Indonesian language set in Indonesia staring Indonesians and written, directed and edited by this guy:
Crunchy plastic couple sitting behind me, your killing me, oh, a van just pulled up in the film and BAM! Crazy music blasts so loud in contrast to the silent beginning I feel like its cleaning out my brain and washing away everyone around me!
The movie then slows down, quiets down, and introduces some new characters. I can hear plastic again. A slow ease to the apartment building (the one featured on the films posters) using some average shots and borderline acting. A few average shootouts.
Then holy crap. Holy. Crap. Actor Iko Uwais (the guy in the beginning morning quiet scenes, and on the poster) gets into a hand to hand fight with some guys. WHAT! Now the action has started! And does it start, wow. Nothing matters around me anymore. I am in awe. When his fight ends you can hear everyone in the theater sigh in relief! NO JOKE! NOT KIDDING! We all heard each other, then we laughed with amazement at what we just saw! I could feel the permagrin on my face, it felt good, I knew more was coming, I was happy, this was going to be fun. And it was.
The ending unfortunately was as average as the beginning. But I still walked out grinning. Got in my car and drove it like a race car home. If their was a rating system for action films this would get the highest rating, the highest.