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[Movies] Gareth Evans Talks About The Humor In The Raid 2
Posted by Joseph Lee on 03.27.2014

In an interview with Coming Soon, director Gareth Evans spoke about the humor in The Raid 2, along with the status of the American remake. Here are highlights:

On the deadpan humor of the film: "Yeah, I'm massively influenced by Japanese cinema, especially [Takeshi] Kitano and [Takashi] Miike. They have that deadpan humor. Sometimes something will come out of the blue and you'll be like, "Where the f--k did this come from?" It kind of shocks you into laughter. Sometimes it might even be the violence. There might be an element of the fight scene where it shocks you so much, it elicits a reaction. When something elicits a reaction and you gasp and hear two other people gasp in the theater, it becomes a shared communal experience. You've all shared that same sound and you all released right after how dumb it was to make that sound. You hear it and think, "Oh, it's a movie! It's not real!" But it still shocks you. Then it makes you laugh and it becomes this communal moment where you're now laughing at it and it's all cool. I'd rather people laugh than be repulsed by it or disgusted by it. If you're repulsed and disgusted by it, it's just overkill. It's just too much. What I hope to achieve is those oohs and ahhs that make those laughters and make the overall experience so enjoyable. It's fine to laugh, even when it's a really violent sequence. The humor is so deadpan and so dry as well that I love the fact that you've connected to it."

On the status of the American remake: "With the American remake, my involvement is very minimal. I'm an EP on it, but I'm not directing it myself. I'm not going to have a massive amount of say in terms of the creative side of it. That's not because I can't. I could totally do that. I just don't feel that it would be right to do that. I think that what's right for that project is having someone like Patrick Hughes, who is going to direct, should just be given free reign to go and do what he wants, just like I was given free reign to go and do what I wanted on my first one. He should be given the same kind of deal. He's a super-talented guy. "Red Hill" is great. I haven't seen "Expendables 3" yet, but from what I've heard about it, the guy did a great job on it. I'm kind of interested and curious to see what he's going to do with it. A "Raid" remake is not a remake in the same way that there's an "Oldboy" remake where it's all about plot and character and everything is tied in to the very bitter end. This one is like a ten-minute intro. It's a concept piece. Once you're in that building and you tell the audience how that building operates, the rest of the action sequences can be completely different. They can be completely new and choreographed by someone else. All it has to do is maintain the same tone and the same kind of mood and atmosphere that we had. That's it. Content-wise, the fight scenes? It could be so different and so incredible as well."

On the comic book style: "Yeah, Hammer Girl and Baseball Bat Man, they were always designed with a comic book kind of style. I always wanted to make something that was kind of a pop icon. I wanted to create a character that would be so memorable that it could become a Halloween costume. That's all surface level stuff. I wanted it to stay within the confines of reality, too. So those comic book characters are exaggerated, but they don't go so far that the logic band snaps. They push it very, very close, especially Baseball Bat Man with the Babe Ruth moment, but it's just that. There were big concerns about that. We spoke about the script a lot and there was some concern. "Are you sure you really want to do that baseball scene?" I was like, "Well, why not?" "It could be seen as too comic bookish. As too crazy." "Yeah, but let me try it. Let me see if I can film it. Let me see if I can do it in a way where it doesn't feel crazy. It's about the audacity of it rather than the far-fetched side of it."


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