THE NIGHT COMES FOR US (2018)
Not Rated | Color | 121 minutes
Directed by Timo Tjahjanto
Also Known As: La noche nos persigue
Purchase it: N/A (Currently only available to stream on NetFlix.)
Review originally posted to our Patreon on February 28th, 2020.
When I first saw the trailer for Timo Tjahjanto’s THE NIGHT COMES FOR US, I immediately added it to my NetFlix queue… and promptly forgot about it. Then, nearly two years later, I finally sat down after picking it at random off of my enormous watch list, and boy was I glad I did!
Set in a dark underworld of crime and horrendous violence, THE NIGHT COMES FOR US is the redemption tale of a Triad assassin named Ito (Joe Taslim). He’s part of an elite group of killers known as the Six Seas, but is now being hunted as a traitor after killing his own men instead of murdering a child named Reina (Asha Kenyeri Bermudez).
Seeking refuge and aid from the members of his old gang, Ito brings down the fury of the Triads upon them. This leads to a series of arterial-spraying and bone-shattering fights that continue to escalate and become incredibly (and sometimes hilariously) more violent, as they fight to protect young Reina from her ruthless would-be killers.
While the plot is paper-thin (and doesn’t really follow through 100% on the whole redemption arc) don’t worry too much about it because you will become lost in the bone-snapping martial arts battles and gory gun & knife fights. Necks, backs, and limbs are broken – people are sliced, diced, stabbed, disemboweled, set on fire, blown up, and riddled with dozens of bullets. And just when you think the violence has plateaued, THE NIGHT COMES FOR US somehow manages to up the ante!
The cast in this film is great and there are some real standout characters – in particular, Zack Lee’s Bobby frequently steals the show during the film midpoint of the film where he and two others battle a horde of knife/axe wielding henchmen. An old friend (and “brother”) of Ito, Bobby is hilariously over-the-top a times and doles out a fair amount of punishment before he goes down fighting, and earns himself a bit of redemption for his past misdeeds.
Joe Taslim’s Ito is certainly a force to be reckoned with in this film – he sells his character’s brutal, single-minded nature quite well. His foil in THE NIGHT COMES FOR US is another former gang member/brother named Arian (THE RAID films’ Iko Uwais), a rising member of the Triads. Arian is an accomplished fighter who’s seems almost as unstoppable as Ito. Although he is slightly torn by his mission to kill Ito and the others who are protecting Reina, Arian’s unquenchable thirst for power drives him to a final bloody showdown with his former friend.
THE NIGHT COMES FOR US is set in, what is predominantly, a “man’s world,” but contains multiple kick-ass female characters. Elena (Hannah Al Rashid) and Alma (Dian Sastrowardoyo) are lesbian lovers and members of the Six Seas. Elena nonchalantly slashes her way through the majority of her opponents, while Alma seems to have a little more fun with her victims – her weapon of choice is a strand of razor sharp piano wire with a weighted ball at the end and she uses it to devastating effect.
There’s also the mysterious “Operator” (Julie Estelle), who is on a mission to eradicate the Six Seas and their leader. She is the film’s ultimate bad-ass because she bests Ito in a one-on-one fight, and holds her own against a group of Triad thugs led by Elena and Alma who arrive to kill poor Reina near the film’s final act.
The fight choreography, camerawork, and editing in THE NIGHT COMES FOR US is fantastic! Once again, Indonesian filmmakers put us Americans to shame by creating well-crafted fight scenes where you can see everything and never miss a second of the action! Though there is a clumsy “Go-Pro/Over the Shoulder” sequence when Ito is hacking his way through an army of foes, it is mercifully short and never done again.
I don’t have much more to say about THE NIGHT COMES FOR US, other than I definitely give it a big recommendation! What the film lacks in plot and substance, it more than makes up for in action and pure carnage! If you’re a bit on the squeamish side (doubtful, knowing what most of you Vault Dwellers watch) or have issues with a film putting a child in jeopardy (some of you parents may wince during moments where crazed killers slash at or try to shoot a child), you may want to give this movie a pass. But if I just said all the right things, then definitely give this Timo Tjahjanto masterpiece a look because it is more than worthy of: