• Russian Raid (Well Go USA) Blu-ray Review

    Released by: Well Go USA
    Released on: March 9th 2021.
    Director: Denis Kryuchkov
    Cast: Ilya Antonenko, Nikita Kologrivyy, Ivan Kotik, Vladimir Mineev, Sofya Ozerova
    Year: 2020
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    Russian Raid – Movie Review:

    Russkiy Reyd, retitled Russian Raid for its North American Blu-ray release by distributors Well Go USA, was directed by Denis Kryuchkov in 2020 and while it is far from the most original action movie you’ll ever see, it’s a decent watch despite some questionable CGI effects.

    The story begins when a sniper named Nikita (Ivan Kotik) and his partner are out to eliminate some bad guys. It goes south and before you know it, Nikita is injured and his pal is no more. From here, Nikita does what most action movie guys like him do, he lays low for a bit and recuperates. We see him train for a while by doing things like punching the exterior of his log cabin and pouring cold water on himself. This lets us know that he is, in fact, a bad ass.

    Once he’s back in action, he hands over his pet turtle to his friend to take care, because he’s accepted a job that will require him to take out a big private security firm that's been tasked with guarding a factory. The man who has paid Nikita quite handsomely to do this is going to use this assault to extort the factory owner. Nikita puts together his team and they set out to do what they've been paid to do, only to learn the hard way that the factory is actually owned by a very dangerous Russian mobster with ties to the military. Things don't go well, but Nikita has a few aces up his sleeve.

    The computer generated smoke and blood splatter is never convincing but overall, if Russian Raid feels like quite a few other movies all sort of rolled into one, it at least entertains. Ivan Kotik, who has done quite a bit of work in the Russian film industry as a stuntman and who appeared in the Dolph Lundgren/Scott Adkins movie Legendary, is a pretty solid leading man and many of the supporting players in the picture are played by Russian MMA stars. As such, the action is handled by a cast more than capable of delivering the goods. The fight scenes are a little too ‘shaky-cam’ at times but otherwise very nicely executed and quiet intense.

    As to the story? Don’t go in expecting much, you’ll figure out where it’s all heading before the movie takes you there, but if the film is rife with clichés at least they’re entertaining clichés.

    Russian Raid – Blu-ray Review:

    Russian Raid arrives on region A Blu-ray from Well Go USA in AVC encoded 1080p high definition framed at 2.35.1 on a 25GB disc with the feature taking up 21.7GBs of space. Shot digitally, there’s obviously no print damage or grain to discuss. Detail is pretty strong, especially in close up shots, and while the film’s color palette is limited, it’s reproduced well enough. We get strong black levels and accurate looking flesh tones as well.

    Audio chores are handled a 24-bit Russian language DTS-HD 5.1 Surround Sound track with optional subtitles offered up in English only. An optional Russian Dolby Digital Stereo track is also included, but the lossless one smokes it. There’s nice surround activity evident throughout the film’s many action scenes and it sounds quite good. No issues with any hiss or distortion to note and the levels are fine.

    Extras are limited to a trailer for the feature, previews for a few other Well Go USA properties, menus and chapter selection. A slipcover is also included.

    Russian Raid - The Final Word:

    Russian Raid doesn’t reinvent the action/revenge genre but it’s an entertaining enough picture despite its derivative nature. The action hits hard and is pretty well-choreographed and the film moves at a nice pace. The Blu-ray release from Well Go USA is light on extras but it does look and sound pretty decent. Casually recommended to action movie junkies.

    Click on the images below for full sized Russian Raid Blu-ray screen caps!