Reds (1981)


No Top Critics Tomatometer score yet...


Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

This epic film focuses on the life of famed American communist John Reed. The film begins in 1915, when Reed makes the acquaintance of married Portland journalist Louise Bryant. So persuasive is Reed's point of view that Louise kicks over the traces and joins Reed and his fellow radicals.

Rating: PG
Genre: Drama, Romance, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Trevor Griffiths, Warren Beatty
In Theaters:
On DVD: Oct 17, 2006
Paramount Home Video


as John Reed

as Louise Bryant

as Emma Goldman

as Eugene O'Neill

as Max Eastman

as Grigory Zinoviev

as Louis Fraina

as Paul Trullinger

as Mr. Partlow

as Speaker at the Liber...

as Mrs. Partlow

as Carl Walters

as Helen Walters

as Floyd Dell

as Horace Whigham

as Maurice Becker

as Ida Rauh

as Crystal Eastman

as Marjorie Jones

as Jane Heap

as Big Bill Haywood

as Police Chief

as Pinkerton Guard

as Pete Van Wherry

as Dr. Lorber

as Julius Gerber

as Allan Benson

as Joe Volski

as Gomberg

as Interpreter

as Vladimir Lenin

as Leon Trotsky

as A. Kerensky/Himself/...

as Young Bolshevik

as Sen. Overman

as MacAlpine

as Eddie

as CLP Member

as CLP Member

as Official

as Radek

as Escort

as Finnish Doctor

as Russian Nurse

as Russian Doctor

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness

as Witness
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Reds

Friend Ratings

No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.


Critic Reviews for Reds

All Critics (36) | Top Critics (3)

As for Beatty, Reds is his bravura turn.

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Reds is an extremely fine film.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Warren Beatty's political epic features superlative performances and speaks to the inner-rebel in each of us.

Full Review… | August 15, 2011
Cinema Sight

Filled with rich ideas.

Full Review… | January 10, 2010
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Vittorio Storaro, who won an Oscar for his cinematography, keeps the long film moving at a healthy pace, mixing static shots with subtle camera movement, never showing off or detracting from the story.

Full Review… | August 5, 2007
Arizona Daily Star

an epic love story ... As a teenager I saw it four times in the theater (which I now find pretty astonishing, considering the movie is well more than three hours long -- I had a lot more free time in 1981!)

Full Review… | January 12, 2007
Kalamazoo Gazette

Audience Reviews for Reds

A gripping political epic of ambitious discussions (and with a splendid production design) about an idealistic journalist/activist who became an ardent revolutionary to fight for what he believed in, and it is very well edited and well paced for a film that runs for over three hours.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer


This epic historical political romantic drama biopic proved to be a real labor of love for Warren Beatty, who served as co-writer, producer, director, and star.

Well, in that first sentence, I gave this a heck of a descriptor, so, what's it all about? Well, it's a look at the life and career of John Reed- an American journalist and communist whose relationship with feminist and writer Louise Bryant played out during the Bolshevik Revolution of the 1910s. Reed chronicled said revolution in his book The 10 Days That Shook the World, and has the distinction of, so far, being the only American buried in the Kremlin.

So yeah, what we get here is a lengthy, but fascinating look at Russian Communism, as well as an outsider's role in the midst of one of the most interesting parts of modern history.

I'll admit that, while I'm not a real big fan of politics, I am somehow still mildly interested in and fascinated by socialism and communism. The film looks at the movement both in the U.S, and Russia, and gives it a human edge that was previously not done in prior representations of things.

This film would be quite a major accomplishment if made today. That it was made during the middle of the Cold War is even more impressive. Besides having a straightforward narrative of Reed's life and career, the film contains talking head segments with various friends, acquaintances, scholars, and others who provide more insight into Reed, Bryant, the movement, and the era itself.

Beatty knocks it out of the park in all of his various roles here, and, as a director, this has yet to be topped as his masterpiece. Joining him in the cast are a dynamite Diane Keaton as Bryant, Jack Nicholson as Eugene O'Neill, and the likes of Edward Herrmann, Paul Sorvino, Gene Hackman, Maureen Stapleton, and M.Emmet Walsh among others in various supporting roles of varying lengths.

The acting is solid, the subject matter is quite interesting (I thought), the talking head segments were a wonderful addition, and the cinematography was quite strong as well.

As for downsides: well, it is a really long film, and, while I was pretty glued to the screen for most of it, things did get a little slow and boring here and there, but not enough to wreck things. It's also not the fastest moving piece of work, either, and there's not really much in the way of action, but then again, this does cover a lot of material, so the pacing works for the most part, and there isn't too much of a need for lots of rousing action and whatnot.

All in all, I was quite impressed by this. I can't say I'll be watching this one too often, but I did find myself quite impressed by this, and think it is a really important piece of work that you should consider giving a watch, especially if you get the time.

Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

This was quite a long movie but the story being told got better and better.

Wildaly M

Super Reviewer

Reds Quotes

– Submitted by Robin W (24 months ago)
– Submitted by Robin W (24 months ago)
– Submitted by Robin W (24 months ago)

Discussion Forum

Discuss Reds on our Movie forum!