The Raid 2 (2014)
Save yourself some reading and just order the two pack set of The Raid at Amazon, currently at 15 bucks. You won't regret it. Or maybe you will...but don't think so. Go ahead.
The Raid has already a cult status, and I've watched it several times. But for some reason that I couldn't explain, I never watched the sequel, despite having for three years. You read that correctly. After just watching it, I don't think I can articulate my thoughts about it appropriately. It's something you may have to experience, if you have the patience for it, because you will need some patience. It's a 150 minutes film.
Let's tall about the audio. It's the most interesting mix I've heard in years, and I hope you'll excuse the superlative. I'm not just talking about the bass, which goes a bit below 20hz, but the overall audio presentation, which never ceases to impress and surprise. You know how certain movies, despite having great audio and impressive bass, at some point seem like they start to recycle some effects, and the best moments seem centered about certain specific scenes or moments? Not this one.
I lost count of the moment this mix surprised me with something new or unexpected, and it appeared to parallel the twist and turns of the movie itself. The score, the some scene effects to heighten tension, the sound design to accompany the scenes, it felt constantly fresh, sometime too brief, like they didn't want to give you time to process what you just heard, and moved quickly into something else. I don't know, guys. Until the very end, the sound always seemed to evolve and present something different.
In terms of bass, it's not a bass monster, but it uses low frequencies regularly to very good effect with many different textures, either by means of score or kinetic effects. If it doesn't give you massive amounts, it gives you variety and quality. Unlike the typical Hollywood action movie, this one is not centered about gunshots and explosions, so I guess this allowed the sound designers to be a bit more creative. The sound mix is the perfect companion to the onscreen events, and that's really what an audio mix is supposed to do. It was both fun and engaging, hard hitting but appropriate, never boring. It seriously gets better as the movie progresses.
I have to think, very, very hard to come up with a mix that has engages and interested me in this way. Perhaps it's due to the fact that the movie is quite unique in itself, and the audio follows suit very closely, so the total experience is something that hits differently. Both Raid movies come highly recommended, but in terns of both movie and audio, part two is special. Just be warned the movie is extremely violent, bloody and graphic. If you like your action gritty, this one is for you.
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