“The Raid 2: Berandal” Review

There’s a moment in the “The Raid 2” that takes place in a snowy alley where two characters end up fighting to the death as Handel’s “Sarabande” swells and you realize that this is a beautiful movie; a bloody, brutal ballet of swinging fists, baseball bats, and hammers. “The Raid 2″ is incredibly filmed, well acted, and will likely be remembered as one of the defining action movies of this century.¬†Opening up just two hours after the events of its predecessor,”The Raid”, the general story follows Rama, a rookie police officer, who must go undercover in one of the largest crime families in Indonesia in order to find a list of corrupt police officers but Rama quickly finds himself in over his head. Fans of the first movie will find much to love about the sequel as the movie expands the scope of the “The Raid” and populates it with fascinating and violent characters. Rama is an easy to root for hero, remaining incorruptible as he descends through the criminal underworld, and is a man of few words as he lets his fists do most of the talking. The rest of the cast is filled with memorable characters such as the siblings Baseball Bat Man and Hammer Girl who could have easily walked in out of a Quentin Tarantino film and employ their titular weapons with frightening efficiency. The main star of the film however are the action set pieces and they are a sight to behold. Ranging from muddy prison yard brawls to car chases where seat belts are used with deadly ability, anything and everything becomes a weapon as Rama cuts his way through the crime world; the final climatic battle will leave you breathless in its speed and choreography. “The Raid 2: Berandal” is not to be missed by fans of martial arts, crime dramas, or action movies and is out now in select theaters.