Red Dawn Reviews

  • Apr 05, 2021

    Pure rubbish when it was first released. Even worse after fourty years. Unwatchable.

    Pure rubbish when it was first released. Even worse after fourty years. Unwatchable.

  • Mar 27, 2021

    This film is definitely a product of its time: The Cold War was still in full swing, the Soviets had invaded Afghanistan to expand their "Evil Empire," and it seemed like every day was that much closer to World War III. "Red Dawn" is about a group of high schoolers forced into the middle of an invasion by Soviets and their Cuban allies; they escape the paratroopers who storm their school and kill their classmates to the nearby mountains where they become guerrilla resistance fighters, slaughtering the communists (while still taking losses). With a battalion's worth of ammunition—RPGs, grenades, machine guns—the kids save the day and democracy. "Red Dawn" gets flack for its overtones about the greatness of America and the importance of well-armed citizenry (some reviews calling the movie "a Republican's wet dream"). But what do you get when you ignore these themes? A below-average action movie with an interesting premise ("what if America was invaded?") poorly and blandly executed with uninteresting characters that drag the story on for longer than it should. The set pieces are fairly cut-and-dry with plenty of explosions and bullet ricochets, but they lack depth and drama that other better action films provide. In short, unless you really, really dig the ‘80s and are on a nostalgia kick, it's not worth the two hours that it runs for.

    This film is definitely a product of its time: The Cold War was still in full swing, the Soviets had invaded Afghanistan to expand their "Evil Empire," and it seemed like every day was that much closer to World War III. "Red Dawn" is about a group of high schoolers forced into the middle of an invasion by Soviets and their Cuban allies; they escape the paratroopers who storm their school and kill their classmates to the nearby mountains where they become guerrilla resistance fighters, slaughtering the communists (while still taking losses). With a battalion's worth of ammunition—RPGs, grenades, machine guns—the kids save the day and democracy. "Red Dawn" gets flack for its overtones about the greatness of America and the importance of well-armed citizenry (some reviews calling the movie "a Republican's wet dream"). But what do you get when you ignore these themes? A below-average action movie with an interesting premise ("what if America was invaded?") poorly and blandly executed with uninteresting characters that drag the story on for longer than it should. The set pieces are fairly cut-and-dry with plenty of explosions and bullet ricochets, but they lack depth and drama that other better action films provide. In short, unless you really, really dig the ‘80s and are on a nostalgia kick, it's not worth the two hours that it runs for.

  • Jan 14, 2021

    A solid Patrick Swayze film that has a fast pace and brilliant war elements.

    A solid Patrick Swayze film that has a fast pace and brilliant war elements.

  • Nov 22, 2020

    This one is a little before my time but I have older friends who have always remembered this fondly from their childhoods. Pretty solid 80s cast but the plot action definitely drags for me quite a bit too. I could definitely understand enjoying this had I seen it at the right age as movies where the kids band together against, or to take advantage of the adults, were always a hit with me and my siblings growing up. 4.5/10

    This one is a little before my time but I have older friends who have always remembered this fondly from their childhoods. Pretty solid 80s cast but the plot action definitely drags for me quite a bit too. I could definitely understand enjoying this had I seen it at the right age as movies where the kids band together against, or to take advantage of the adults, were always a hit with me and my siblings growing up. 4.5/10

  • Sep 20, 2020

    Excellent. Good story, good fight. Russians attack America on their soil. A group of high-school kids become a fighting force making random attacks.

    Excellent. Good story, good fight. Russians attack America on their soil. A group of high-school kids become a fighting force making random attacks.

  • May 18, 2020

    I’ve watched movies where the action gets started quickly, but Red Dawn might hold the record. We do not really get to meet the main characters before the war is rolling, because they utter no more than a couple random lines. Next thing you know, a teacher is murdered in front of their eyes and they are running to the hills. On the one hand, I appreciate the concise story-telling. On the other, I never fully locked into the characters in this film because I didn’t feel like I got to know them at all. They certainly have some star power from that era, which is always nice to see, but just because a character is played by Lea Thompson doesn’t instantly make me like them (although it is almost enough for her.) I think the relationship between the two brothers is the most fleshed out part of the film, and so their story is what I was most interested in following. A lot of the other boys I got mixed up with one another. I was having a terrible time matching names with faces, so later on it was hard to know who they were talking about when they’d call out a name. It’s not difficult to root for any group of underdogs, and the Wolverines certainly fit that description. As young kids with no fighting experience trying to strike back against a full invasion army, you know it’s going to be an uphill battle. There is a somewhat odd feeling I get when rooting for terrorist insurgents, but I also recognize that life experience and perspective has changed significantly for Americans since the 1980s, and if I saw Red Dawn then I would never have blinked once at the idea. There’s one other aspect of this film that kept me from enjoying it as much as I’d like, but I’ll be approaching a major spoiler. If you haven’t seen Red Dawn and ever hope to, then read no further. Put simply, I don’t enjoy this kind of bleak ending. It has some emotional punch, and there’s a sense of hope in the message at the end, but that hope doesn’t really apply for the main characters. I mean, if I cared more about any of these kids I would have been deeply depressed by this ending. As it stands, while I appreciated a lot of the action and drama, Red Dawn isn’t the kind of film I’ll be watching again. But who knows if my opinion would be different if I saw it 35 years ago.

    I’ve watched movies where the action gets started quickly, but Red Dawn might hold the record. We do not really get to meet the main characters before the war is rolling, because they utter no more than a couple random lines. Next thing you know, a teacher is murdered in front of their eyes and they are running to the hills. On the one hand, I appreciate the concise story-telling. On the other, I never fully locked into the characters in this film because I didn’t feel like I got to know them at all. They certainly have some star power from that era, which is always nice to see, but just because a character is played by Lea Thompson doesn’t instantly make me like them (although it is almost enough for her.) I think the relationship between the two brothers is the most fleshed out part of the film, and so their story is what I was most interested in following. A lot of the other boys I got mixed up with one another. I was having a terrible time matching names with faces, so later on it was hard to know who they were talking about when they’d call out a name. It’s not difficult to root for any group of underdogs, and the Wolverines certainly fit that description. As young kids with no fighting experience trying to strike back against a full invasion army, you know it’s going to be an uphill battle. There is a somewhat odd feeling I get when rooting for terrorist insurgents, but I also recognize that life experience and perspective has changed significantly for Americans since the 1980s, and if I saw Red Dawn then I would never have blinked once at the idea. There’s one other aspect of this film that kept me from enjoying it as much as I’d like, but I’ll be approaching a major spoiler. If you haven’t seen Red Dawn and ever hope to, then read no further. Put simply, I don’t enjoy this kind of bleak ending. It has some emotional punch, and there’s a sense of hope in the message at the end, but that hope doesn’t really apply for the main characters. I mean, if I cared more about any of these kids I would have been deeply depressed by this ending. As it stands, while I appreciated a lot of the action and drama, Red Dawn isn’t the kind of film I’ll be watching again. But who knows if my opinion would be different if I saw it 35 years ago.

  • May 06, 2020

    Cult Classic Cold War 80's communist invasion flick. Action packed from start to finish. Crazy plot with lots of violence. Solid cast of Teenagers taking revenge. Fun movie that also has some intense dramatic scenes

    Cult Classic Cold War 80's communist invasion flick. Action packed from start to finish. Crazy plot with lots of violence. Solid cast of Teenagers taking revenge. Fun movie that also has some intense dramatic scenes

  • Apr 26, 2020

    Classic. Dystopian thriller.

    Classic. Dystopian thriller.

  • Apr 09, 2020

    Just feels like your run-of-the-mill 80s bang bang, shoot shoot movies. zzzzzzzzzzz....

    Just feels like your run-of-the-mill 80s bang bang, shoot shoot movies. zzzzzzzzzzz....

  • Mar 29, 2020

    I saw that im my youth -

    I saw that im my youth -