Monday, 29 June 2015

Red Dawn (1984) Review

Red Dawn

Release Date: 13th December 1984 - Australia

Production Companies
United Artists (presents)
Valkyrie Films

Genre: War

Rating: M

Runtime: 110 minutes

Budget: $4,200,000

Box Office Gross: $38,376,497

Plot Summary
RED DAWN opens with
one of the most shocking
scenes ever filmed; on a
peaceful morning, through
the windows of a high
school classroom, students
see paratroopers land on
the varsity football field:
the invasion of the United
States has begun! As their
town is overrun by foreign
nationals, eight teenagers
escape to the mountains.
Taking the name of their
high school football team,
the Wolverines, they wage
unremitting guerrilla
warfare in defence of their
parents, their friends and
their country.

Patrick Swayze - Jed Eckert
C. Thomas Howell - Robert Morris
Lea Thompson - Erica Mason
Charlie Sheen - Matt Eckert
Darren Dalton - Daryl Bates
Jennifer Grey - Toni Mason
Brad Savage - Danny Bates
Doug Toby - Aardvark Mondragon
Ben Johnson - Mr. Mason
Harry Dean Stanton - Mr. Eckert
Ron O'Neal - Colonel Bella
William Smith - Strlenikov
Vladek Sheybal - Bratchenko
Powers Boothe - Lt. Col. Andy Tanner
Frank McRae - Mr. Teasdale
Roy Jenson - Mr. Morris
Pepe Serna - Mr. Mondragón
Lane Smith - Mayor Bates
Sam Slovick - Yuri
Radames Pera - Stepan Gorsky

Screenplay/Director - John Milius
Story/Screenplay - Kevin Reynolds
Executive Producer - Sidney Beckerman
Producers - Buzz Feitshans and
Barry Beckerman
Special Advisor - Fred Rexer
Production Designer - Jackson De Govia
Director of Photography - Ric Maite
Second Unit Director/Stunt
Coordinator - Terry Leonard
Film Editor - Thom Noble
Music - Basil Poledouris

At 20 years of age, I never knew how the unappreciated remake of RED DAWN (click here) was influenced by the original 1984 film as until now I had never actually taken the liberty of seeing it. The original and revamped versions are both defined as conventional war movies at the time and both share the same title and plot premise about a group of teenagers defending their homeland against invaders from foreign countries. I would say that time has done justice for the remake as the visuals are much more compelling and convincing. I think people who watch these movies will compare the two and construct their own comparison, the decision of which movie is superior I think will heavily depend on which actor people prefer, whether it be Patrick Swayze or Chris Hemsworth.

Evidently proven on the remake of the film which is rated by other review sites as lower than the original. The classic interpretation of RED DAWN presents to viewers a less light hearted mood and more of a serious and dramatic perspective of the story. The acting was given to a great chunk of unknown, yet soon to be famed actors like Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen whom this was actually his feature film debut in a lead role. 

This film is a one time watch only, but that is not say you should not watch it. It does succeed in creating a remoteness feel and delves into some themes which later are incorporated into the remade version. As most viewers believe the remake falls flat on the original, I like to disagree to those who have seen it and I thought this is not the case.

Star rating: (6/10) Fair Movie

1 comment:

  1. Hi FilmGuruLad, I agree with the feedback you have given for this review. I to feel that the decisive factor of which version you will prefer will be dependant on which lead actor you fancy. I am a devoted Swayze fan so I liked the original version the most however the new version with out a doubt has certainly been given a visual make over. I would also say that this movie in many ways is similar to Tommorrow When The War Began, so I would recommend watching this movie if you like Red Dawn. Thanks for your review, keep up the great work.