Message Man Review: A solid, bloody action film

Ryan (Paul O’Brien) is a former assassin that has retired, and is living on his yacht, somewhere near Indonesia.

He soon befriends a local boy and his mom, but this fragile new acquaintance is soon shattered, when local thugs, involved in kidnapping and selling young girls into prostitution, run over the boy with a car. This is enough for Ryan to explode, turning into a bloody assassin he once was.

As he prepares to go on a killing spree to finish off the thugs. He finds out they’re connected to an enemy of his past…

Well, director/writer Corey Pearson is indeed sending one damn bloody message with this film of his. This is while Pearson has done only two films to date. Message Man (Loi Nhan Sat Thu) being one of them, and he wrote and directed both films. So for now, “Message Man” definitely sends a message that Pearson knows his action. If he ever decides to follow it up.

As we already know, there have been some really amazing Indonesian action movies released in the last 10 years or so, and “Message Man” fits nicely somewhere in between them. Of course “Message Man” isn’t on the level of “Raid” and “Raid 2”, but it is pretty damn close.

Action scenes are well shot, they’re bloody, but not in an excessive amount as in the mentioned “Raid” films. By the way, “Message Man” does have a nice connection to the “Raid” films: Alfridus Godfred, who played a machete-armed maniac in “Raid”, basically reprises his role in “Message Man”.

Speaking of the lead, Paul OBrien. He handles himself nicely throughout the film, including the fight scenes. O’Brien, until now, has mostly been known for his Australian “Home and Away” soap opera series. He may not be too much of an attraction in terms of being a known action star.

Overall, Corey Pearson makes a solid, bloody action film (phim hanh dong sat thu), with mostly Indonesian actors, that are getting more and more recognition. “Message Man” isn’t on the same level as “Raid”, but is a really fine addition to Indonesian action films.

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