9 Extreme Action Films & how The Raid Inspired a new generation of cinematic brutality

The story has it that Gareth Evans traveled to Indonesia looking to make a documentary on the Indonesian form of martial arts, silat. When he arrived he met a bus driver called Iko who drove employees to a telecommunication center. This bus driver also so happened to be a national champion and a master of silat. This was the start of one of the best cinematic pairings in the history of action cinema. They just didn’t know it yet.

A lot of people don’t know but there was a film before The Raid called Merantau Warrior. As far as I know (I can’t confirm 100%) the next film after Merantau was going to be The Raid: Berandal. The team faced some budgetary setbacks and was unable to proceed with the film they hoped they were going to make. However, after the failure of Berandal, a new film rose from the flames, The Raid: Redemption.

The Raid: Redemption was a simple story set up to showcase the breakthrough talent in extreme action films and in-your-face gore and mayhem. The fight choreography was fresh and brutal as hell, the sound design, and FX were gruesome and bone-crunching and the direction was impeccable. This was action cinema like we had never seen before. 

The rest is history. The release of The Raid: Redemption took the world by storm and gave birth to the wonderful world of extreme action films

Below you will find a list of movies that simply would not exist if it was for Gareth Evans Raid movies, so it is only fair that I give them a mention first. I hope you enjoy the new list.


The Iko Uwais starring ultra-action, ultra-violent movie saw a SWAT team trapped inside a large high-rise apartment building. With no way out, Rama and his team must fight their way through hordes of criminals if they’re to escape with their lives.

The Raid 2 ups the mayhem and body count. Taking place right after the events of the first film, Rama joins the thugs and goes deep undercover to take down a crime syndicate


Another blood-soaked adrenaline-fueled action film from Indonesia. A lot of the cast from Gareth Evans’ The Raid movies feature in The Night Comes For Us. The story of a triad enforcer who chooses to go against his code and protect a little girl after the triads massacre her entire village…including her whole family.

Iko Uwais switches up his roles and plays the villain in The Night Comes for Us and Joe Taslim takes on the role of our damaged hero.


Yeah, after The Raid, we got an explosion of extreme Indonesian action films. Headshot reunites Iko Uwais and Julie Estelle aka Hammer Girl from The Raid 2: Berandal.

Uwais’ character wakes up with a gunshot wound to the head. He doesn’t know who he is or more importantly, who shot him. As he is nursed back to health, his past quickly comes back to hunt him. As his cloudy and shady past starts to bleed back into his memories, there is one thing he does know for certain: he is a killing machine.


Boy Kills World is finally getting released soon. Moviehooker first reported about this new actioner back in January 2023 – so, it has been one hell of a long wait and from what I have seen…it has been more than worth the wait.

Starring Bill Skarsgard (The Crow, IT, Barbarian) as Boy and Yayan Ruhian (Mad Dog Assassin from The Raid movies) as Master. Boy Kills World tells the story of Boy, a young child who witnessed the murder of his entire family. As well as witnessing this horrific, murderous act, the murderers cut out his tongue. Years later, Boy is now a trained killer, trained in the wilderness for years by a badass shaman played by Ruhian


Monkey Man is the directorial debut from Dev Patel. At first, when I heard about this film I was a little curious. Did he just train to be a badass for the movie or was Patel’s fist already registered weapons of death? Turns out, he is a black belt in Tae Kwon Do.

Money Man is a revenge movie about one man against a corrupt organisation responsible for the murder and feeding off of the weak and powerless.


From Frontier(s) director Xavie Gens – Farang aka Mayhem follows a French convict fresh out of jail. After fleeing his life of crime, he finds love and peace in Thailand. Now with a family and a child, everything seems perfect until his criminal past comes back to haunt him. The ones he loves dearest are snatched away from him forcing him to take justice into his own hands.

Gens’ new film, a shark horror set in France called Under Paris has now been confirmed for release on the 5th of June on Netflix.


Kill promises us The Raid on a train and it looks like we’re getting exactly that. Labeled as the most violent and gory movie India has ever produced, the reviews have been flawless. 

When a group of bandits board a train to rob its passengers, against all odds, two elite commandos begin to brutally take out the criminals with whatever makeshift weaonry they can get their hands on. The results look absouletly fantastic.


The new film from Timo Tjahjanto (The Night Comes For us, May The Devil Take You, Killers) and the 2nd Tjahjanto movie on this list….now, you can see why I am such a big fan, right?

The Shadows Stray will follow a 17-year-old-assassin who is forced into hiding after a botched job. When an 11-year-old boy she befriended gets kinapped by a crime syndicate, it forces her back into the world of killing and revenge.

We only have to look at Timo’s previous releases to know that this is going to be crazy violent and so ferocius, you will find it hard to ctach your breath. Stay tuned for release info on this title.

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