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The Run ("Lari")

International Premiere
  • Malaysia
  • 2013
  • 90 mins
  • DCP
  • Malay
  • English (subtitles)
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Malaysian cinema hasn’t stopped surprising us in the past few years. One needs only to think of the superb SELL OUT!, screened at Fantasia 2010. Their cinema is interesting, entertaining and refreshing, all qualities attributable to THE RUN.

When Khaliff (Aaron Aziz) returns to his native village for his father’s funeral, it doesn’t take him long to realize that things have changed. The former soldier, however, is not done being surprised. A family friend informs him that his sister is missing and his father was murdered, quickly establishing that the quiet little village he left years ago for his tour of duty has turned into a hot spot of criminal activity. The fishermen he once knew are now in charge of getting drugs and women through customs across the country. Under normal circumstances, it would be live and let live. But when they attacked his family, they made it personal.

THE RUN isn’t out to reinvent the wheel. Its story is simple but effective. Ahmad Idham’s focus is on delivering numerous actions scenes. He aims to amaze with spectacular stunts and fights, a feat he aces masterfully. To do so, Idham needed an actor capable of delivering the goods, and he wisely settled on veteran star Aaron Aziz (KL GANGSTER). Having gotten us used to hard-hitting fights, Aziz now surpasses himself and raises his game a notch. Rooftop fights, boat fights, gunfights, car stunts, they go above and beyond to come back with a solid piece of entertainment you won’t soon forget. However, Idham’s work is not just an amalgam of action sequences. Nor is it a carbon copy of the Hollywood blockbuster. It aptly blends humour, romance, and action, which in turn lends a rewarding depth to its characters. With this picture, Idham proves beyond a doubt that Malaysia is not lacking when it comes to action, easily capable of holding its own with its Asian counterparts. THE RUN is an action-packed gem that wants only one thing: to blow your face off.

— Éric S. Boisvert