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16 reviews in total 
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The Raid 2 (2014)
8 out of 32 people found the following review useful:
Finally, an Indonesian drama of Indonesia Mafia family. This is a story of a spoiled brat who 'can't wait to be king', disturbing Jakarta Underworld., 25 March 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"How could you apologize to them, using their language, in our land" -- Ucok

Ucok (Arifin Putra), was the prince of Bangun (Tio Pakusadewo) family. He thought he would have his own charisma as how his father was. He was wrong. He got into a fight with another spoiled brat and was taken into prison. In the prison, he knew better, he should use his father name to scare people instead of relying on his own. He gathered a group of muscle man to protect him, lead by Beni.

Those run well at the beginning. The prison guards let him walked with his gang, even let him brought knife everywhere inside the prison. Until a new guy came into prison and put on a show. Several person was beaten by the new guy alone in the toilet stall and this guy refused Ucok's offer to be part of his men.

The new guy was Yudha (Iko Uwais), a man from nowhere, not affiliated to any group. Eka (Oka Antara), Bangun's caretaker, had run a background checking and confirmed to Ucok, Yudha did not came from any rival groups. Ucok took interest on him. But not until the incident of the prison riot, he could gain friendship from Yudha. In the riot itself, Ucok learned that he couldn't trust anyone, not even his own men.

Two years later, when Yudha had been released from prison, Ucok personally picked him and drove him to his father. Ucok wanted Yudha to be part of his family. His father approved and put Yudha to be Ucok bodyguard. Yudha himself had successfully proved to be a great killing machine in his first task.

Somehow, being a bodyguard, didn't mean Yudha would follow whatever Ucok wanted. The Karaoke incident told Ucok that Yudha had his own thought. While Yudha might be a killing machine, it seemed he could not enjoy the nightlife as other thugs. Worse, it seemed Yudha had his own moral code.

Meanwhile, the Karaoke incident made Ucok learned that while his father was in power, it didn't make all people respect him. Yes, some people may aware of his father existence and afraid to insult him yet it didn't stop the other people to disobey Ucok. It didn't make Yudha, his own bodyguard, obey him either.

And then, a mysterious call came. It offered Ucok to fulfill his ambition, to raise him into a new respected guy in a higher position than he was. The call came from Bejo and he invited Ucok to his restaurant.

"even by being a simple garbage man, I would have been considered as more successful man than my father ever was" -- Bejo

Bejo (Alex Abbad) came from a low class. He kept reminding himself how he came from a low class and he did not shy to tell that to other people, including his enemies. He was a social climber, a calculated one. He knew who should be ridden and who should be taken as company.

His action, no matter how aggressive it was, was still considered as a small thing. Even though some Yakuza had suspect his move, they could lay hand of him since the scope of his action was small enough. The best they could do was report him to Bangun.

However, Bejo was now ready to take a giant leap. He invited Ucok to his restaurant and offer him to build his own legend, to create his own charisma. In a humble proposal, he told Ucok that he only wanted a small land with no liability of protection money.

Bejo told Ucok that to create a legend, they need a war. They had to unbalanced the structure so they could rebuild a new empire. Ucok had to sacrifice his own palace to raise the battle cry.

And then start the battle scene which being praised by the audience in Sundance and SXSW Festival 2014.

Arifin Putra, I've seen him in previous Indonesia film, Badai di Ujung Negeri and I was surprised he could actually act. The most amazing scene of him and also the scariest one was the Karaoke. That was so real and Yudha, the good guy, couldn't do anything on that scene. The karaoke girl could be slashed to death and there was nothing the protagonist could do.

Alex Abbad, I loved when he played in Merantau. I knew I would be in treat when I heard he would be Bejo in this movie. And he didn't disappoint.

Oka Antara. I have seen his movie a lot. Most of them were about being a kind and full of smile guy. I knew he tried to be different character. One of his movie where he tried to be 'bad guy' was Killers directed by Mo Brothers, yet I still saw him as a nice and kind guy. In The Raid 2, he was different. He became a serious guy on his job and there was no good guy anymore.

Tio Pakusadewo. Uncle Tio is a senior actor, just like uncle Ray Sahetapy who played as Tama in the first movie. Here, he played Bangun, an old father who wished his son could learn patience.

Yayan Ruhiyan. The Mad Dog of The Raid Redemption, returned as a totally different character. He played as an assassin and also an old servant of Bangun family. In return, Bangun family considered him as a close member of the family. When Ucok needs someone to express his anger, he would call Prakoso, the servant.

17 out of 23 people found the following review useful:
It is a half-baked movie. Lousy and disjointed music, rough and disjointed cut, bad CGI, bad image composition which make a real stunt looks like a fake stunt., 21 November 2013

Disappointed by Tom Yum Goong 2 (The Protector 2).

It is a half-baked movie. The problem I found with this second installment were mostly post-production stuff, e.g. lousy and disjointed music, rough and disjointed cut, bad CGI, bad image composition which make a real stunt looks like a fake stunt.

Yep. If only the movie was left as it was taken without any post- production things (like let the background were green), it might be more enjoyable than this half-finished movie.

The other problem was lack of screen time for Jeeja Yanin. In THE KICK, Jeeja Yanin didn't play the main character yet she stole the screen. Here, she barely exist although she appeared in the final fight.

Once you can get pass through the annoying things, the movie was actually have a better stuff which could make it a way better than Donnie Yen's Special ID.

TYG 2 was actually felt more like the sequel of Ong Bak instead of Tom Yum Goong.

The earlier scene where Tony Jaa taught children three martial art movement based on elephant movement reminded me to the earlier scene of Ong Bak which Tony Jaa exhibit all the movement from Muay Boran. I was excited watching the scene but unfortunately, that idea was developed into action only for .. err.. two fight scenes. The other fight scenes was all-the-stuff-we-have-seen-from-previous-movies.

The bikes-chase-scenes were kind of mixing between Tuk-Tuk chase scene and gambling gang chase scene from Ong Bak. This scene, which should had been great, unfortunately was the most unfortunate scene ruined by those half-finished post-production.

The actor which may gain benefit from this movie was Marrese Crump who played as Fighter #2. I counted there were four fight scenes in which he appeared. The first fight was so and so (He against Tony Jaa, Jeeja Yanin, and another girl). The second one was amazing (he against Tony Jaa). The third one was too fantasy and the CGI were not good. The fourth one, which also the final fight was good although the choreography was so and so.. but it was tense.

If I'm not mistaken, there will be a project, 'FORMLESS', which had him as a star and also collaborate with the same team from Tom Yum Goong 2. I can't wait to watch it but I wish Sahamongkol Film will really take time to finish the post-production as necessary. Releasing this kind of half-baked movie was really a grave mistake.

302 out of 384 people found the following review useful:
After watching this movie, I found myself lost my appetite to other action movies. For me, other action movies was a snack, 21 November 2011

My number one list action movie is The Matrix because it balanced the depth of the story with the action. Somewhere among the top list, there was also The Dark Knight for the same reason. However, when speaking only 'action', I used to choose a Hongkong movie, Flashpoint, starred by Donnie Yen. Before Flashpoint, I'll choose a Thailand movie, Ong Bak which launched Tony Jaa career internationally. Now, when I speak an action movie that speak for the action, I will choose an Indonesia movie, 'THE RAID', choreographed by Iko Uwais and Yayan Ruhiyan and starred by them.

The problem with Donnie Yen's Flashpoint was you need to wait about one hour and fifteen minutes to get the action really start but when it started, it was really worth to wait. The fight between Donnie Yen and Collin Chou, inspired by MMA especially BJJ was so well choreographed and made audience hold their breath and asking "are this sh*t a real thing?". In Evans' latest, THE RAID, you won't need those one hour and fifteen minutes because he already made the audience gasps in the first fifteen minutes.

I wouldn't say a thing about Ong Bak because in my opinion, Merantau was more superior than Ong Bak. The problem with Merantau was Gareth was trying to bring audience to understand the culture of Silat first because showing the full action.You can said, Merantau was like Yamakasi doing for parkour while The Raid was the B-13 of silat.

It is useless to review this movie from the plot because there wasn't any significant plot. The plot was made only to bridge between one action scene to other action scene. But d*mn! Even with the weak dialog and cliché plot, Gareth executed it well so we, the audience, didn't have time to analyze this or that. What we know, we were flooded by f*cking awesome action movies from infiltration scene, massacre scene, and of course, martial art scenes when the characters have run out of bullets.

I remember when one of Merantau review said Merantau was Ong Bak when handled professionally. The same can be said with THE RAID. The Raid was Flashpoint with larger actions and handled professionally from the music, cinematography, and even the visual effect.

The music composed by Aria Prayogi and Fajar Yuskemal was like a combination between Hans Zimmer's Joker theme and Rage Against The Machine. It brought the audience immediately to the brutal tone of the movie. In some scenes, those music suddenly disappeared, leaving uneasiness to the audience. I wonder how Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park will interpret the scene to his score because Prayogi and Yuskemal score was perfect for the tone of this movie and it was really different with any Linkin Park score.

The sound effect, oh my, I hardly believe this is Indonesian movie. Even Hongkong movies are rarely have this good sound effect, You can differentiate between the bullet shot next to you to the bullet shot from the next room, The sound of knife slashing was so beautiful to listen and combined by the beautiful art of Silat, the scene was a masterpiece of a brutal dance of angel of death.

THE RAID has little visual effect but when they did, it was done amazingly and effectively. Frankly, prior to watch this movie, I was a little bit disappointed when I heard there will be slow-motion scene in the movie. However, Gareth proved me wrong. He was not Zack Snyder. The slow-motion was done only in one scene and perfectly executed which I hardly imagined how it should be done in other way.

Matt Flanery and Dimas Subhono as DOP played camera creatively and yet it captured all the motion perfectly. In fact, some scenes was like a scene taken from art movie due to their creative angle but it didn't reduce the brutal tone of the movie, didn't make the impact of every punch and kick weaker, in fact, in some scenes, it enhanced the "BAM!" factor.

The choreography was the factor which made this movie popular. I have said previously that even the fight scene between Donnie Yen and Collin Chou in Flashpoint had been surpassed by almost every fight scene in the movie. In Merantau, Gareth didn't want to show the brutal image of silat due to the main character of that movie was a naive and kind young man from village. In this movie, the characters are cops and bad guy, so either be killed or kill. Both Iko and Yayan have choreographed it so well so even one reviewer said "I didn't know there was so many ways to kill people until I saw this movie" and he was right. Jeff Imada (Bourne Identity) and Yuen Woo Ping will recognize these people from Indonesia and you'll probably hear about them in coming years among the top list of fight choreographer.

After watching this movie, I found myself lost my appetite to other action movies. For me, other action movies was a snack before I can watch the next Gareth Evans project, BERANDAL.

- Kunderemp -

1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Forget The Surfer, just watch Dr. Doom!, 15 June 2007

I don't want to give any spoiler anyway, you can find it elsewhere easily.

I'm not one of those who love the trailer. There is nothing new with the special effect, indeed. Hence, I didn't have any high expectation when I saw this movie with my mother in Indonesia. However, the second trailer which showed Dr. Doom being attacked was interesting so I knew the presence of Dr. Doom will be a different one.

In the first movie, Dr. Doom character was a joke. I didn't even remembered how he fought in the first movie.

But not in this one. It is fortunate, Dr. Doom sequences in the movie never appeared on the trailer except his encounter with the Surfer. It was great. That what I expected from an amazing villain from Marvel Universe.

However, for the next sequel, can somebody tell Avi Arad to propose another actress to act as Susan Storm, please? Until this sequel, I can't see how Jessica Alba fit on his role.

Spider-Plant Man (2005) (TV)
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Problem of being Superheroes, 5 May 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Almost everyone know being superhero is not easy. You'll be risked of being laughed by wearing ridiculous spandex costume, you miss your old glorious time. Can't help to laugh when I saw Batman doing curhat *) to Spider-plant Man or saw the reporter's comment on those superheroes.

It may not be the best of Rowan Atkinson but I didn't see him as Mr. Bean anymore in this movie.

From the title itself, it is clearly the parody of Spiderman. The opening credit sequence would reminded you the opening credit sequence of Spiderman 2 which show Alex Ross' version of the first Spiderman's story. The first three scenes was a parody of the first movie of Spiderman. The background music was clearly taken from Spiderman's (, isn't it? ).

It get better when Batman appeared on the screen. For those who think Batman and Robin should not played by middle-aged men, apparently, you missed the joke. Begin as the parody of Spiderman, it grew to a critic of Superheroes movie.

I only regret the movie was too short.

*Curhat: It is a slang of Indonesian Language. It means, telling someone about your problem, about how you feel about your problem, to get other's sympathy.

7 out of 16 people found the following review useful:
Better than Twins Effect 2, 1 August 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I'm not the fans of the original comics (Long Hu Men or Dragon and Tiger Heroes) but I read some of them so I knew, there was something wrong with the protagonists' appearance.

It was their hair! Tiger Wong (Wong Xiao Hu) and Turbo Shek (Shi Hei Long) didn't have the hair that long. Only Dragon Wong (Wong Xiao Long) who have the long hair.

The main characters also changed. In the comics, the main character is Tiger Wong (Wong Xiao Hu) but in the movie, the main characters is his brother, Dragon Wong. Maybe it is about Donnie Yen.

The first two fight scenes was amazing. I love the fight in Japanese Restaurant which really took the fight in the comics into widescreen without losing its reality grip.

The fight in Baseball court is good but we saw this kind of fight too much in other wuxia movie.

And when the Shibumi, the chief of Lousha Gang fought, suddenly the excitement decreased. And it hards to understand how can our warrior penetrate the enemy's headquarters without fighting the inferior first yet. (Wesley Snipes' The trilogy of Blade is better about this])

The excitement started to begin again when the main hero, Dragon Wong (Donnie Yen) appears to fight Shibumi. His "18 Dragon Palm" was amazing although it was a little bit similar to Tony Jaa's muaythai in Ong Bak. However, the moment was short and the movie disappointing again by giving the audience a bad finishing touch for the fight.

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
worse than history teacher, 12 August 2005

Failed to watch this movie, I bought the VCD and I really feel disappointed.

KH Noer Ali, the main character was rarely appeared in the story. In fact, every time he appeared, he only gave a preach, not in 'ulama-sense' but in monotonous teacher.

The battle were pity. Indonesia soldiers were famous by their"gerilya" (guerilla) tactic which often confusing the Dutch soldiers. In this movie, the equipped-with-low-standard-weapon Indonesia soldier attack the Dutch in open field which were suicidal strategy.

One of the character was a dutch girl who sympathized with the Indonesia struggle. The funny thing was, there was a scene when she wear an army uniform. Didn't she afraid of being falsely recognized as enemy in the eyes of Indonesia soldiers? It would be more make sense if she kept her civilian clothes.

The fictional-triangle-love which was meant to be an entertaining part of the movie, was also badly developed.

Reading a thick history book will be more entertaining than watching this movie.

Tragedi (2001)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
One of disappointed Rudy Soedjarwo's movies, 12 August 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

There were something funny about Rudy Soedjarwo. His odd-number movies was always good but his even-number movies was bad. The first one, BINTANG JATUH was good. This movie, the second one was disappointed. The third one, ADA APA DENGAN CINTA was phenomenal. The fourth one, RUMAH KETUJUH was disappointed (despite of good scenario). The fifth one, MENGEJAR MATAHARI, was superb. The last one was disappointed.

Tragedy was Rudy's experimental of creating action-mafia-movie. It was heavily influenced by Guy Ritchie's LOCK, STOCK, AND TWO SMOKING BARREL. There were a group of men who had trouble after they gambled and they needed to find money as soon as possible.

As the substitution of drug mafia, a secret society who were stupid enough to their criminal records in website, became the main characters' enemy because they protect a woman who previously download the record.

There were lot of illogical plot in this story. Watch this movie and be prepare to be frustrated. Using bullet-time effect in the last scene did not help this movie but instead, degrading the quality.

2 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
disappointing movie, 12 August 2005

This is a legendary movie which I expected so much before I had a chance to watch it. When I saw it, I felt so disappointed.

The picture was good. The acting of the actors and actress was superb. The story itself was also good. The problem was the battle scene. It was really disappointed.

I also felt disgusted when I saw the scene after Tjoet Nja' Dhien's victory. I didn't think what Tjoet Nja' Dhien did (in the movie) was appropriate for a Muslim warrior.

The movie was obviously contain propaganda. There were attempt of viewing Dutch soldier as incarnation of Satan by doing something immoral (taking picture over the body of the defeated Acehnese... C'mon, Did they really do such horrible things? There should be a picture if those event was really happened ).

This movie was just a good movie just because some people say it was good.

5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
best war-scene in Indonesia war movie, 12 August 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is the second best of Indonesia war movies in my list which took Indonesia Independence War (1945-1949) as its setting.

The story itself based on true story about the bravery of people in Soerabaja (now Surabaya). Although in the battle, Indonesia was lost, the Soerabaja people fight was always remembered.

The movie started when the Japanese lost the war and the proclamation of Indonesia Independence was spread by the Radio. The people of Soerabaja attacked and took the weapon from Japanese soldiers and swore to loyal to Indonesia.

When the British arrived in Soerabaja, the people accepted them because the British army came to handle the Japanese Soldiers. The problem arose when British did not admit the existence of Indonesia. And the climax started when a British general died in explosion. The British attacked Soerabaja, tried to conquered it but they couldn't do it without sacrificing many of their soldiers. Although in the end, Soerabaja people lost the war, there wasn't anything left in Soerabaja to be claimed by British and the war had just began.

Soerabaja '45 sometimes fell into "propaganda" but it saved by little incidental funny situations which, in the story, was made by ignorance of naive (but brave) Arek Soerabaja (Arek = youngling). Can you imagine how a person who never be in the war before, practiced how to throw a grenade? Can you imagine, in the stressful situation, they still joked like said, "I'll fight until the last coffee"? (It described the addiction of Indonesia people to coffee).

The war was amazing for Indonesia movie. While the other Indonesia-war-movie usually only shows gun-fighting, this movie shows a lot of explosion, even the body thrown by the explosion (Eight year before Spielberg's Saving Private Ryan).

If you count how many language was spoken in this movie, you'll surprised because there were 5 languages: Indonesia, English, Japan, Dutch, and Java.

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