Recent sudies and headlines have revealed a major spike in demand for a stronger female presence behind the camera in today’s film industry. In that case, today would mark the perfect opportunity to welcome filmmaker Kellie Madison to the fray in the wake of the latest online release of her eight-minute martial arts feature pitch video, The Gate, following a hardcore crowdfunding campaign last summer…and boy does this pitch or what??!
Chalk it all up to Madison’s own affinity for director Gareth Huw Evans’s Indonesian crime film saga, The Raid, essentially laying the groundwork firmly with upcoming Lady Bloodfight star, actress Amy Johnston in the role of a gifted MMA boxer and silat fighter who wages a one-woman vigilante war against Indoesian gangsters and evil forces on different planes. The addition of The Raid franchise co-stars Yayan Ruhian, and then Cecep Arif Rahman shortly thereafter when Ruhian couldn’t make it to the production at the time even moreso speaks to the very nature of just what Madison’s interests are for The Gate in its current standing.
On that note, it bears mentioning that Madison just recently completed a feature film script to apply to her vision, and so I think it’s one that martial arts fans can truly appreciate given what’s at stake here. We still don’t have a Raid remake or a part three, but Indonesian action cinema remains ever more fresh and hot with fans of the martial arts genre. Thus, Madison has certainly proven her ability to speak the language and translate that with solid action and a tone tethered for awesome brutality and drama and Johnston leading the way.
Suffice to say, I nearly lost my shit while watching this, and The Raid 2 did the exact same thing for me. If a feature film can come from this project to get us jumping out of our seats with Johnston on screen and kicking the number of butts she does in the way she does it, by no measure would I even consider saying no. Keep martial arts action alive, I say, and keep The Gate open while you’re at it.
Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.