Les Misérables

I watched the movie yesterday. Conceptually, the story is fascinating. We have several issues presented in a pretty solid way:

  1. An parolee who tries to escape his past by repentance and working hard, becoming a good, honest, reputable man.
  2. A police officer who believes only in blind justice: law is everything, once a criminal, always a criminal.
  3. A mother who is willing to do everything (even becomes a prostitute) to support her daughter.
  4. A young idealist man commited to social change who eventually organizes a rebel movement.
  5. Some petty crooks… who are crooks :p
  6. etc

No conclusion about this movie at the moment, though. Probably I’ll watch this movie once again. But one thing for sure:

musical drama is and has always been a turn off to me. It makes me go Zzzz….




I assume that you folks have watched Sylvester Stallone’s Judge Dredd. If you haven’t then it’s fine. Keep reading.

And oh, spoiler alert. You’ve been warned.

One day, Dredd (a judge) and Anderson (a rookie judge) are assigned to investigate a murder in a certain building. Then they raid a room, where a small drug party is happening. After some shootings here and there, they capture a guy, who turns out to be one of the gang leader’s right hand. Sounds pretty good.
Unfortunately, the gang leader (a she), watches this from the surveillance cams. She orders a lockdown and have her crooks after them. The judges have nothing left to do, except killing them one by one. Yes, this is where the party started.
OK, enough. Too much spoilers are not good for health :mrgreen:
Does this movie ring the bell? Well it should.
Yes, you just read my mind. It’s The Raid
Both films display some resemblances, surpisingly (or not):
Highly trained polices? Check
Raiding a locked down building level by level to the top? Check
Corrupted polices? Check
Guns & gore? Check
No special plot? Ummm… check
So in general, I prefer The Raid. Why? Because the actions are far more intense :mrgreen:
But character-wise (The Raid’s Rama vs Dredd), I’ll go for Dredd. Here’s why.
To me, Rama looks like a young unexperienced police, who sometimes seeks the guidance from his superordinates.
Dredd, on other hand, is not a rookie. He’s a senior judge. Firm & uncomprimising.
In case you have forgotten, this block operates under the same rules as the rest of the city. Ma-Ma is not the law… I am the law
Damn. That’s one hell of statement!
And he delivers the final blow, with quite a style :mrgreen:
Final remark:
If you are an action junkie, then go for this movie. It’s quite fun. Just like The Raid, but with less intense actions.
Think I’ll rate this movie 7 (out of 10).

The Raid

First if all: SPOILER ALERT. You’ve been warned :p












If you are looking for movie with deep complex plots, lots of conflicts between characters, then obviously The Raid
is not the movie for you. But if you are an action junkie, then go ahead. Keep reading. I’m sure you’ll like The Raid very much :mrgreen:

Basically, the movie is like this: a notorious drug lord, Tama Riyadi, is hiding in apartement building in Jakarta, which also become a safehouse
for criminals. Tama has 2 right hands: Doni, the man behind his drug business, and Mad Dog, a deadly fighter.
For 10 years the police have been trying to take the place down, but still unsuccesful

An elite team, lead by Sgt Jaka, is assigned to raid the building, in order to bring Tama down. This raid is ordered by Lt Wahyu.
a senior police. Apparently, Tama is already expecting them. So he asks his fellow criminals
to “play” with the elite team, and this is when the fun part begins. One by one, the member of the team is killed. Only Lt Wahyu, Sgt Jaka, Rama,
and the other 2 members survive. Can they continue the mission?

So, in a glimpse, you are probably thinking this movie sounds like a cliche: a bad guy is hiding somewhere, then a group of police is assigned to
raid his hiding place, arrest the bad guy, bla bla bla. Well, kinda. But as I said before, if you are looking for plots, you are watching the wrong movie.
In fact, this movie is almost plot-free. From the beginning until the end, the idea has always been action, action, and action. Lots of deadly pencak silat moves. Bloods everywhere. Kill or be killed. Probably like Kill Bill. In one scene, a bad guy is hit on his neck by an axe. Ouch. But he is not dead yet, so he has to be shot in the head. Double ouch. On another scene, Rama sweeps an entire corridor using deadly kick combos and knifes. The most epic scene of this part
is when he slams a guy, on his neck, into the sharp edges of a broken door. There are so many … uhmm… interesting ways of killing depicted in the movie.

To spice the story up a bit, a bit of conflicts is sprinkeled. Doni is actually Rama’s brother, who have gone missing for years. In the end of the movie, it is revealed that Lt Wahyu seems to be one of the police officials bribed by Tama, and he decides to finish him for good. A bit cheesy, maybe.

This movie employs a minimum visual effect, which is actually good, because it accentuates the actions in the movie.

So, what is my impression of this movie? Me, being an action junkie, is very satisfied. The satisfaction I felt is similar like the one after watching The Dark Knight. Iko Uwais and Yayan Ruhian did a brilliant martial art coreographing. I salute you guys! A dense, fast-paced action movie from the beginning to the end.
No fluffs, just stuffs! And now, this movie makes the other actions movies I already watched felt so… “light”, which I think will also affect how I see The Avengers. That’s bad, because actually I am expecting to see that movie :mrgreen:

On the other side, let’s hope that Berandal, the sequel of this movie, will also equally epic, or even better. Yeah, I’m expecting a better plot, and not just relentless brutality. :mrgreen: