A couple of years ago we talked about the remake of Red Dawn on the show and wondered if a) we needed a remake because, let’s face it, the cold war is over and b) if it would ever come out because of several problems plaguing the film (see below). Well, now here it is, finally getting a release. You can see the trailer and poster below.
John Milius’ original Red Dawn, which came out in 1984, was a cold war statement about how ordinary Americans could fight back against the evil ‘red’ threat. It was propaganda by a very right wing director during a very paranoid time. Even with this agenda, the film was a fun action film that you couldn’t help but have a lot of fun with because of how silly the premise was. This time around our group of freedom fighters (The Wolverines) are lead by a marine (Chris Hemsworth) and that sort of defeats the ‘ordinary Americans’ aspect of the story. My suspicion, the film doesn’t try to push an agenda, instead it goes the politically correct road and just becomes a generic action film. In the decades to come people will still be watching Milius’ original film because it is a time capsule of the period and this film will be forgotten about.
Director Dan Bradley’s remake has been plagued with problems, first there was MGM’s famous financial problems a couple of years ago that shelved the film. When that resolved the film had another problem, the original invaders were supposed to be Chinese. Due to our ever expanding dependance on China as a trade partner, this needed to be changed and North Korea was decided upon to be the new bad guys, so the film had to be digitally altered so the invaders had North Korean insignias etc.
Finally we come down to the last issue, the brass tacks as you might say, we live in a very different era and I don’t think that we really see North Korea as the big bad guy. The threat doesn’t feel as real as in the first film. About a year ago or so a video game came out called Homeland that kind of felt like the spiritual successor to the original Red Dawn, it was even developed with the help of John Milius, if anything, that was all that was really needed. This remake really does just feel a little like it is too late, by about three decades.
Red Dawn is directed by Dan Bradley and stars Chris Hemsworth, Isabel Lucas, Josh Hutcherson, Adrianne Palicki, Josh Peck, Connor Cruise and Jeffrey Dean Morgan. It is due out in America in November.