As much as an 80s movie aficionado, I've never watched Red Dawn all the way through. It's always just been a movie I acknowledged but never really had much interest in it but when Shout Factory was kind enough to send it, I wasn't gonna turn down a viewing. I'm very happy I did because considering the current events, it's pretty relevant.
The movie takes place in a fictional team of young high school students(WOLVERINES!!!!!!) team up against an invading Russian mercenaries with the threat of World War 3. Not willing to give up their will and freedom, they decide to band together and fight the invaders.
After watching this for the first time, I was super impressed. Not just considering everything going on in the world now, but because of just intense it was. From the first 5 minutes, I was blown away by just how intense this movie is. It made me realize that despite the cast (consisting of Charlie Sheen, Lea Thompson, C Thomas Howell, Patrick Swayze, and Jennifer Gray) this is no Brat Pack movie. The skills the team using guerilla warfare and straight up desperation and will, this movie definitely takes a concept of World War 3 to a very realistic level. It's easy to sit back and say "oh yeah, if we were invaded by another country, I'd do this or that" but watching it makes you truly think about the lengths you would have go as well as the sacrifices you would make. It's a very, very thought provoking movie and really put things into perspective.I can honestly say, this movie helps reaffirm that famous phrase "freedom isn't free", this movie gets a 100% thumbs up on my part and will be a fine addition to my movie shelf.
The bonus features on this disc are just as enjoyable:
- NEW "A Look Back At Red Dawn" – A 70 Minute Feature Including Brand-New Stories From Co-Star Doug Toby, Casting Director Jane Jenkins, Production Designer Jackson DeGovia And Editor Thom Noble
- Archival Featurette: "Red Dawn Rising"
- Archival Featurette: "Training For WWIII"
- Archival Featurette: "Building The Red Menace"
- Archival Featurette: "WWIII Comes To Town"
- Original Theatrical Trailer
I'm a huge fan of featurettes so hearing the production stories of the making of this movie was very enjoyable as were the archival featurettes.
So, come Tuesday March the 14th, when you go to The Shout! Factory website to order your copy, be sure to scream WOLVERINES! knowing you've made the right choice!
Unlike Red Dawn, I had previously viewed Colors - the movie about a young, cocky rookie officer Danny McGavin (Sean Penn) and the wise, older veteran Bob Hodges (Robert Duvall) on an anti-gang unit in an already volatile South Central Los Angeles. The movie explores not just the relationships each officer has with the neighboring gangs but the life lessons Danny learns as well.
At the time, gang tensions were at an all time high in South Central and indeed the country. Gang violence and treatment by the police was documented through many movies, magazine articles and of course N.W.A's "Straight Outta Compton". We were only a few years away from the Rodney King beatings and the race riots that would follow, so this movie was right on the cusp of a very dangerous issues getting even worse. But this movie served as a great view of just how bad things were going to get. This movie plays more like a documentary that feels like you're in the thick of the police beat. I can't recommend it enough.
The extra features are just as enjoyable as the movie itself. Two very in depth interviews regarding the production of this movie. I enjoyed hearing
- The Unrated Cut Of The Film, Including Footage Restored From The International Cut And The Original Home Video Cut
- "A Cry Of Alarm" – An Interview With Screenwriter Michael Schiffer
- "Cops And Robbers" – An Interview With Technical Advisor/Ex-L.A.P.D. Gang Division Dennis Fanning