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West Volusia Beacon Movie Review — Red Dawn
Rated PG-13 for language, violence and some intense sequences
posted Nov 23, 2012 - 2:41:09pm
The Patrick Swayze "classic" Red Dawn really wasn’t a very good movie. Sure, it’s a fun kind of film for a Sunday afternoon with your buddies, but it’s just so incredibly outdated. So, needless to say, the bar was set pretty low for the remake. This is probably why I hate myself a little for liking it so much.
Chris Hemsworth (better known these days as Thor) takes over the Swayze role, slightly modernized as a marine on leave visiting his dad (Brett Cullen) and brother (Josh Peck), when the North Koreans decide to attack America. It’s a small change, but it makes so much more sense as he gathers a bunch of random high school students to help defend the country. The story revolves around this group of freedom fighters, under their high school mascot's moniker - the Wolverines - utilizing guerrilla tactics to create chaos and destroy the Koreans' moral.
The story is just as ridiculous as the original, but this time around, the Wolverines take on the tactics that Hemsworth learned during his tour in Iraq. This, of course, evokes the very interesting idea that one side's freedom fighter is the other side's terrorist, surprising for a movie so shallow (Hemsworth at one point even says, “Now they’re the bad guys”), but one that really adds to the stakes.
Popcorn represents how fun a film is to watch—how funny it is, how exciting the special effects are, and how enjoyable the story is on repeated viewings. The perfect popcorn movie would be one that never got stale regardless of how many times you’ve seen it.
Still, Red Dawn is an action flick, which means that no one is really expected to give a performance that will bring audiences to tears. That being said, Hemsworth does what he does best as the hero of the film, delivering a stirring speech or two to call his troops to arms. Morgan is a breath of fresh air when he enters during the third act to shake up the group dynamic of the characters, because they all wear their motivations on their sleeves.
Red Dawn is one of the best remakes I've seen: It gets the job done and improves on the original. I certainly had no intentions of liking it when the opening credits started rolling, but it proved me wrong. Trust that it’s worth the price of admission even despite its shortcomings.
Stars & Popcorn grade: 2 1/2 stars, 4 popcorn
— Born and raised in the sunshine state, Patrick grew up loving movies. He’s currently attending the University of Central Florida and is a Cinema Studies major. Along with being the president of Stars and Popcorn, he’s a player in the independent comics scene.
Sponsored by Liebe Entertainment Group, Marketplace 8. Click here to see showtimes for Red Dawn
Visit Stars and Popcorn at www.starsandpopcorn.com
Patrick Sessoms — Born and raised in the sunshine state, Patrick grew up loving movies. He’s currently attending the University of Central Florida and is a Cinema Studies major. Along with being the president of Stars and Popcorn, he’s a player in the independent comics scene.
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