Entertainment

REEL REVIEWS: Dawning of an unnecessary film

Adrianne Palicki, Josh Hutcherson, Isabel Lucas, Chris Hemsworth and Josh Peck star in Red Dawn.   - MGM Studios
Adrianne Palicki, Josh Hutcherson, Isabel Lucas, Chris Hemsworth and Josh Peck star in Red Dawn.
— image credit: MGM Studios

The night after the Wolverines’ big high school football game in Anytown, U.S., every teenager is sleeping soundly in their beds. Awakened early by earth-rattling booms that seem to be getting closer, everyone dashes out of their suburban homes to find the sky full of military aircraft and paratroopers dropping.

In a frantic scramble of terrified confusion, a group of kids manage to escape the Red Dawn, by taking refuge in a cabin in the woods.

These teenagers, joined by a few others and led by a recently returned marine (Chris Hemsworth) take matters into their own hands, wreaking havoc against the invading force. Will their resistance grow? Can they defend their homeland?

We say, “Wolverines!”

HOWE: The mighty Scandinavian God is back to protect his home from a supernatural evil.

TAYLOR: Uh, that’s Thor mixed in with The Cabin in the Woods.

HOWE: Sorry about the slip up, it’s just that Hemsworth’s acting is the same in all of his movies: shouting, arguing, scowling and yet more shouting. Oh and he gets the pretty girl, just to top it all off.

TAYLOR: Are we supposed to believe or care about a “communist threat?” This movie blows more hot air and wastes more time than a Conservative parliamentarian.

HOWE: I agree, but if you enjoy killing people and you’re not bothered about it having a stupid premise, Red Dawn will tick all of your boxes: big explosions, lots of fighting and chase scenes. Fans of Medal of Honor or Call of Duty will probably enjoy this more than most moviegoers. Why didn’t the producers just leave the original alone and cash in on another “first person shooter?”

TAYLOR: I enjoyed the original in ‘84 when I was 12. The Cold War fear, at least for my generation, was one of nuclear threat. A land invasion of the U.S. was a preposterous proposition then, it’s no less ridiculous now. Any parachuting army wishing to invade America would be shot dead by civilians, from second story windows, before boots touched ground. (Now that’s a movie!)

HOWE: This tripe is way too long (even my tiny bag of sour candies didn’t lift my spirits), two hours that should have wrapped up within 90 minutes (maybe even that is too long.) The invasion would have gone faster.

TAYLOR: I wanted to leave after 20 minutes. The sappy dialogue between the characters caused me gastronomical discomfort. I had to busy my mind by admiring the interior design of cinema five at the Galaxy. Interestingly, Red Dawn sat in a computer for over a year when the producers decided to change the invading force from Chinese to Korean, so as not to lose the lucrative Chinese market. (Does the fact that they only changed army logos make the film racist?) I can think of no reason to see this film, but I’m no longer a child or paranoid of things I don’t understand.

— Howe gives Red Dawn 1 first kill barf out of 5.

— Taylor gives it 1 propagandist poster out of 5.

The film is currently showing at the Galaxy Cinemas in Vernon.

–– Peter Howe and Brian Taylor are movie reviewers living in Vernon, B.C.

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