On the sofa: The Raid 2

Coming back to the UK reminded me of how much Hong Kong is a cinema-centric culture despite the technology, mobile devices and amazing restaurants. Going to the cinema there was literally half the price of London, which means that I am much more critical of the entertainment shown. The first film I have seen that was actually worth it’s ticket price since I have got back is The Raid 2.

The Raid put the Indonesian martial arts scene on the map with a highly kinetic film that owed much of its visual intensity to computer games. The Raid 2 follows on just hours from the first film; but is an entirely different beast.  As you can see from the trailer, there is still lashings of Indonesian-style ultra-violence

But the film’s pace ebbs and flows in order to tell a more detailed story this time around, which feels very much like an early John Woo, pre-Hollywood. There is a nod to Quentin Tarantino with some of the gimmicky characters such as Hammer Girl.