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Published October 22, 2018

Netflix’s The Night Comes For Us is the latest martial arts actioner from the makers of The Raid: Redemption and Headshot. Written and directed by Timo Tjahjanto (Killers, Headshot, V/H/S/2), it stars Joe Taslim (The Raid: Redemption, Fast & Furious 6, Star Trek Beyond), Iko Uwais (The Raid: Redemption, Headshot, Mile 22), and a host of other actors you’ll probably recognize if you’re a fan of those films.


Joe Taslim in The Night Comes For Us

Ito (Joe Taslim), a member of the South East Asian Triad’s elite group of killers known as the Six Seas, of which – you guessed it – there are six, is sent to wipe out a small fishing village that was skimming profits from the Triad. Ito and his crew kill everyone, but he has a change of heart while pointing his rifle at a young girl named Reina (Asha Kenyeri Bermudez), whose mother was just gunned down in front of her. Ito decides to save the girl and shoots all of his soldiers instead. Wounded, Ito takes Reina to his girlfriend’s apartment, where he enlists his friends, Fatih (Abimana Aryasatya), Wisnu (Dimas Anggara), and Bobby (Zack Lee), to keep her safe from the Triad. Ito’s old friend, Arian (Iko Uwais), is then called back from Macau by his boss, Chien Wu (Sunny Pang), also a Six Seas member, to track down and kill Ito. Arian is assured that he will take Ito’s place in the Six Seas upon completing his assignment. From there on, it’s non-stop, awesome, blood-letting action that involves a kinda messy hierarchy of gangsters and henchmen, a mysterious female bounty hunter, and flip-flopping allegiances.


Iko Uwais in The Night Comes For Us

Uwais also served as the film’s action coordinator, and the guy has become a master at choreographing fight scenes. They are creative and absolutely, wonderfully, brutally violent. Joe Taslim, who starred alongside Uwais in The Raid: Redemption and is an ex-judo champ, delivers a good performance and proves to be a great match for Uwais, with his strength and endurance vs. Uwais’s speed. As masterful as their fight scenes are, they’re almost shown up by a trio of female badasses: Julie Estelle as the mysterious “Operator”, Dian Sastrowardoyo as Alma, one of Chien Wu’s assassins, and Hannah Al Rashid as Elena, Alma’s knife-wielding partner. Their fights are among the most visceral and gory. Those times I reflexively turned away because the violence was so extreme were during the final confrontation between those three ladies.


Hannah Al Rashid in The Night Comes For Us

All in all, The Night Comes For Us is a cut above most other martial arts movies. Despite it running a little long at just over 2 hours, and having a pretty thin plot, it’s well shot and features some truly solid acting, with Sunny Pang a charismatic standout in his supporting role. Taslim and Uwais give it their all dramatically as well, and I’m sure we’ll see even more of them in big-budget Hollywood films in the future. As I’ve mentioned, the fight choreography is top notch, and Uwais & Co. have kind of established Indonesia’s version of the old Shaw Bros. productions, with actors switching between playing good guys and bad guys, lead characters and background characters, in each film. If you’re a fan of martial arts movies, and don’t mind extreme violence, I’m not sure I could recommend The Night Comes For Us enough.
8/10


Written and directed by Timo Tjahjanto (Killers, Headshot, V/H/S/2), The Night Comes For Us stars Joe Taslim (The Raid: Redemption, Fast & Furious 6, Star Trek Beyond) as Ito, Iko Uwais (The Raid: Redemption, Headshot, Mile 22) as Arian, Julie Estelle (Macabre, The Raid 2, Headshot) as The Operator, Sunny Pang (The Collector, Headshot, Buffalo Boys) as Chien Wu, Zack Lee (Bad Wolves, The Raid 2, Headshot) as Bobby, Hannah Al Rashid (Ritual, V/H/S/2, Aruna & Lidahnya)  as Elena, Dian Sastrowardoyo (Drupadi, Gangster, Aruna & Lidahnya) as Alma, Dimas Anggara (Radio Galau FM, Magic Hour, Dancing In The Rain) as Wisnu, Abimana Aryasatya (12:00 A.M., Negeri Van Oranje, Belenggu) as Fatih, and Asha Kenyeri Bermudez (The Doll, Danur) as Reina.

The Night Comes For Us is now available to stream on Netflix.

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