Pencak Silat Movie Goes International

The Raid RedemptionIn the heart of Jakarta‘s slums lies an impenetrable safe house for the Indonesian most dangerous gangsters. Cloaked under the cover of pre-dawn darkness and silence, an elite SWAT team raids the apartment in order to take down the notorious drug lord. It runs well, until the lord caught them. The building’s lights are then cut and all the exits are blocked. That’s where the slaughter begin. Gangsters in the building versus (just) 20 special polices. The unit must fight their way to survive, and yet, to accomplish their mission.

That’s the synopsis of The Raid: Redemption (Gareth Evans, Indonesia: 2011). Nothing special within the plot, I tell you. The story goes even like a text without context. Suddenly this, immediately that. But the fury is really, really world class action. With a fresh sense of humor in few scenes. Thanks to Gareth Huw Evans for done such masterpiece. After hollow decades, finally Indonesia produced a greatexecuted action, martial arts movie. Such a refreshment among the genre of cheap comedy, horny teen, horror, or what so-called inspirational in Indonesian cineplex.

Before The Raid, Gareth directed Merantau, Indonesian traditional martial arts, pencak silat-based movie. Story set on Sumatra and Jakarta’s today, with Iko Uwais, a silat practitioner and newcomer in showbiz, as the main role. Iko Uwais played the main role too in The Raid.

For both movies, the picture was shot in Bukit Tinggi (West Sumatra) and Jakarta. It’s a long period of production. Huge budget too. But it paid off. Merantau was previewed internationally through Festival de Cannes 2009. Meanwhile, The Raid became a box office in US, won Audience Award and Dublin Film Critics Award in 2012 Dublin International Film Festival. Few months before, The Raid won also People’s Choice Award in 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.

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I don’t really like Merantau. But The Raid rocks! You can figure out how far is Gareth-Iko’s improvement only by watching the two trailers above. Merantau actions similar to Jackie Chan’s “parkours”. And the fighting technique reminds me of Tony Jaa’s muay thai. I can’t hardly see where the pencak silat’s sense is.

However, you must know that Gareth, the writer-director from the Wales, isn’t newbie in pencak silat domain. He has known this Indonesian martial art since 2005. Gareth even made a documentary film about it.

For your information, pencak silat is a grappling and standing fight at the same time. It’s originated from Indonesia. Like an MMA (Mix Martial Art) which keeps on evolve. So no wonder if there are similarities with other martial arts. Elbow-knee’s attack à la muay thai, lock-antilock à la jiu jitsu, punch-kick à la kung fu, and so on. Especially with muay thai that was born in South-east Asia too.

In The Raid, the pencak silat element is even more fading. All you see is fights, blades and bullets. The good ones, though. The Raid (I think it will be trilogy) is a must see movie, especially if you love action and thriller. But I warn you, this is an adult movie due to its violence scenes. So, never bring the child in front of the screen. It should be only you and people like you who watch this movie.

Ready? Ok, let’s raid then!

NB: Hey, there’s also a score by Mike Shinoda of Linking Park.

19 comments for “Pencak Silat Movie Goes International

  1. pOe
    May 19, 2009 at 17:06

    waaaa…makaci inponya. kayaknya sih bagus, untuk ukuran pilem indo maksudnya. dan ngeliat dari websitenya, kayaknya pilem ini dibikin dengan persiapan yang bagus ya. nggak kayak pilem2 indo (esp. horor, cinta2an sma) yang gak jelas itu.

    sayang, pilem tentang salah satu budata indonesia malah dibikin bukan oleh warga negara indonesia. kebanyakan crew nya malah bukan orang indonesia. sedih…

    untung koreografi nya dibikin sama orang indonesia sendiri. kalau nggak, maluuuu….

  2. May 19, 2009 at 18:02

    Yo’i, Put. Kenapa selalu harus orang luar yg repot2 menggali potensi budaya kita? Kenapa kita sendiri nggak merasa negeri ini besar dan memiliki banyak eksotisme yg bisa diangkat sbg cerita?

    “Ya kan gue udah angkat sosok2 hantu asli Indonesia,” celetuk sineas mainstream di Indonesia.

    :( Capek deeeh ….

  3. Aleena
    May 26, 2009 at 14:51

    Era Berry Prima lagi, nih. Tapi dari koreografi fighting-nya, kliatannya oks banget.
    Cheers,
    Aleena

  4. May 26, 2009 at 15:53

    Thx, Aleena. Kyknya ini jauh lbh keren dibanding film silat jaman Barry Prima dulu. Terutama koreografinya.

  5. May 28, 2009 at 18:00

    I dun recall how I got here LOL but cool blog ;)

  6. May 29, 2009 at 08:12

    Hahaha, thanks for (accidentally) coming. By the way, I love watch muay thai on film. Hope I learn this martial art one day.

  7. ariez
    June 13, 2009 at 14:49

    saya movie freak neh. kayaknya keren. soalnya film indo jarang yang ber_genre Action. coba liat trailernya ah! ada kan!
    dari pada film horor. cinta. horor. cinta!

  8. June 15, 2009 at 11:26

    Thanks, Ariez. Trailer-nya ada kok di postingan ini jg. Tinggal tonton (asal punya Flash Player).

  9. August 25, 2009 at 16:44

    cacad g iso di download

  10. August 27, 2009 at 08:37

    Hahaha, pancene g ono download2an nang kene, Mas.

  11. zhark
    August 11, 2010 at 17:06

    i see pencak silat movie trailer it so nice but it must be very nice if ti is a historical pencak movie.

  12. August 12, 2010 at 09:07

    Zhark, you mean Pencak movie like Indonesian movies in 80-90s? Yeah, it’s nice, but unfortunately is not trending anymore here. In the future, who knows?

  13. Idrus
    March 29, 2012 at 17:07

    Ha ha,
    This should how pencak silat perform.
    Fight, real fight ! Not dance !!

    Maju terus perfilman INDONESIA !!

  14. March 29, 2012 at 17:09

    Agree, Idrus!

  15. March 30, 2012 at 08:59

    Nonton The Raid bikin capek. Tapi seru sih. Cuma yg sakit jantung kalo nonton film ini, sakitnya bisa tambah parah. Hati-hati aja.

  16. March 30, 2012 at 12:49

    Makanya ratingnya R. Restricted!

  17. April 2, 2012 at 23:33

    Penasaran juga dengan film ini, sudah mendapat bbrp penghargaan yah… Oya, sepertinya gak cocok buat anak2 yah. Ada teman yang bawa anaknya nonton, pulangnya nyesal … ^__^
    Mugniar´s last blog post ..‘Menulis Kreatif’ ala Kompasiana Blogshop

  18. April 3, 2012 at 12:21

    Waktu aku nonton jg ada beberapa anak2. Terus nyeletuk dg lugunya, “Pa, orang itu mau dibunuh ya?” Aku cuma ngelus dada. Aduh, ini yg kurang wawasan bukan anaknya, tapi papanya, hehehe.

  19. April 5, 2012 at 11:10

    postingan nya bagus sekali
    kita bisa bertukar info d web kmi http://unsri.ac.id

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