Friday, August 10, 2012

"Red Dawn" Trailer Predictably Blows

From the looks of things, watching for seams-showing where FX and editing were employed to turn the "Red Dawn" remake's bad guys from China to North Korea will be a lot more interesting than the movie itself...


I'm making an effort to be more positive lately, so let's momentarily ignore the fact that this movie apparently sucks so profoundly that it's been sitting on a shelf for three years and focus on some stuff I actually LIKED in this trailer:

1. Shot with the snow-globe is a clever repurposing of the "Jurassic Park Effect."

2.) Thor being a returned-veteran is a potentially interesting twist - assuming he's either coming back from Iraq or Afghanistan (remember, this was actually made in 2009) he's essentially going from combating an insurgency to partcipating in one.

3.) The notion of North Korea being able to invade a Dennys, much less the United States, is still laughable on it's face; but an EMP weapon is a good-enough solution to handwaving how such an asymmetrical invasion might be at least attempted.

Also, it just occured to me: Since the goal of the re-edit was to stay on the Chinese market's good side (and let's be clear here: China invading the U.S. militarily is every bit as dumb as North Korea), will they bother to address the now-present plothole of why China doesn't bomb NK into the Stone Age for invading a country they've got billions of dollars invested in? Let's get real for a minute here - before the Wolverines would've even had time to gather ammo, wouldn't a Red Army detachment be in Pyonyang asking that they please stop touching their stuff?

20 comments:

Lido said...

the original Red Dawn is an underrated classic with a strong emphasis on being an anti-war film, focusing on the way that cheap militaristic revenge jingo-ism destroys both innocence and humanity, being so ambiguous as to not even say if America won in the end, and now it's been reduced to this, great

Joe said...

@Lido:

I'm skeptical that was ever John Milius' intent. On the other hand, I really appreciated the sympathetic Cuban general in the original. I wonder if there will be any equivalent in this one.

Joe said...

#2: I assumed Jeffrey Dean Morgan was playing the shot-down Air Force pilot from the original who advises the Wolverines. Is he not, or is sharing the mentor role with Hemsworth's character?

#3: My feeling is if there were such thing as a functional EMP weapon that didn't also rain radioactive fallout on the target area, someone would have used one by now. I'm kind of tired of them as plot devices. If even the US military doesn't have one, how in the hell could North Korea?

A lot of things don't make sense. The US military has forces stationed all over the world. What the hell are they up to when the homeland is invaded? You'd have to EMP a good chunk of the planet!

OD Sunny said...

What? evil *insert foreign country here* is invading the big old america?? lets kick them all because we are AMEWRICA! i'm sick of these patriotic muvies about america and its might and glory and patriotism. and btw; what happend the big bad russian "empire" didnt wanted your stupid ass continent?? aw... how touching ... [sry for bad engl]

Shark said...

I still can't believe Josh Peck is in this movie. He seems out of place in a movie about North Koreans invading America.

Speaking of the movie, wasn't the original Red Dawn rated R?

Timothy said...

@Shark
The original 'Red Dawn' was actually the first movie (or at least one of the first movies) to get the then-new PG-13 rating.

Nick said...

I’ll be interested to see if Red Redux turns out any good. I suspect that it won’t be because it will pander to the radical right and play to the Obama is the antichrist sentiment (they’re releasing it around election time aren’t they?). But it could work.

John Marsden’s Tomorrow Series managed it for a while by having the war represent adolescence. It jumped the shark and got seriously insane in the post war books though with the good guys shooting up shopping malls to distract the baddies, making erection jokes while strangling people and launching into big speeches about how vigilantism is awesome, how big government can suck it and how running around shooting at people and being shot at is fun and makes you a well-adjusted person.

Uncle Tim said...

"...let's momentarily ignore the fact that this movie apparently sucks so profoundly that it's been sitting on a shelf for three years..."

While I doubt I'm going to be a huge fan of this production (not being a huge fan of the original), I seem to remember another MGM-based film with Chris Hemsworth that was delayed for three years as well. I guess that one also must have sucked. ;)

Anonymous said...

I find the batshit crazy premise of this movie kind of appealing. Also the cast. It probably isn't very good in terms of script, pacing, acting, or action choreography, but it looks at least good enough to watch on cable.

MovieBob said...

@Uncle Tim

"Cabin In The Woods" wasn't precisely SHELVED while delayed, though - the same cut that was in theaters this year was being shown to critics, journos, festivals and test-auds for the whole three years that the sale was being worked out. THIS has been locked-away and hidden, and that was BEFORE they started re-editing the bad guys.

Uncle Tim said...

@MovieBob

While that may be true, do you really think if it weren't for MGM's financial woes this film would have been tucked away for three years? And this film has been shown to test audiences within those three years. We know that from several reports that have been floating around for quite a while.

If you're going to suggest it probably sucks (and there's plenty to hint that that's the case), I'd say in this case, given MGM's financial circumstances, the delay isn't much of an indicator.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ OD Sunny

By all means, please explain to me how the American government and military getting their ass handed to them is about "america and its might and glory and patriotism".

Red Dawn (at least the original, and presumable the new one) is about following a guerrilla insurgency... The only reason America is the country getting invaded is because it's being predominately marketed to American's.

Chris Cesarano said...

I think, Almighty Narf, it was also playing to political fears at the time. The whole America vs. Russia thing was still big around then, after all.

However, it wasn't really a movie about "America is awesome!", considering how almost all the kids become not-too-mentally-stable and other such things. To read it as such is to really misunderstand the intent.

Watching the new trailer, the snow globe resembling an explosion is pretty much the only nice touch I got out of that. I actually wonder if they'd do better calling the film Homefront: The Movie and claim it ties into the video game, because the exact same thing happens (North Korea unites a bunch of Asian countries and EMP blasts America so they can invade).

Blue Highwind said...

I really don't understand Hollywood's thinking here. Okay, I understand that they're worried that the Chinese might be a bit unhappy that they're being portrayed as the bad guys*. But I don't think they're fully thinking here. This is CHINA INVADING THE US. Its as much a jingoistic fantasy for the Chinese as it is for us! Come on! Think about it, its your country that's fictionally creaming the greatest superpower around today. I'd see that, I don't know about anybody else.

I wonder how this movie will do in North Korea...

* By the way is this going to be a thing now? We cannot have any evil people from any possible film-watching populace? Because seriously, fuck that right now before it even gets started.

Anonymous said...

@Blue Highwind

North Korea is a cultural dead zone. They don't allow any media not created by the state to reach the public.

As far as "we can't offend potential audiences" go: China is an oppressive state with a ridiculous hair-trigger on banning media. This is the country that banned time travel movies because of the potential for anti-state metaphors. Even if the audiences there would enjoy seeing their country kick America's ass, the state wouldn't allow it.

Does it suck that we probably won't ever see a Chinese bad guy in a mainstream film again? Yes. But remember: mainstream = money-driven = committee designed = widest possible appeal = low artistic integrity or credibility.

Lord Slithor said...

Didn't we already see this? I mean, the video game "Homefront" was pretty much the same story. North Korea were the bad guys there too and Milius even wrote the game's story. Like Yogi Berra said, "It's deja vu all over again."

Lord Slithor said...

Just watiched it. Personally, I didn't think it was that bad. And North Korea being the villains was no more implausible here than it was in "Crysis," and everyone pretty much gave that a pass.

And besides, I have to give them points for using Filter's "Hey Man, Nice Shot." :)

HyenaThePirate said...

You know.. it's very well the Chinese are our allies in this version as well. If you recall from the FIRST Red Dawn, when World War III essentially started, our ALLIES were a million screaming chinamen... Wait.. aren't there a billion Chinese people?

Not anymore.

o.O

Jacob Beck said...

Josh Peck? I haven't seen him in forever.

Anonymous said...

If they're going to edit stuff they might as well replace the Koreans with Aliens or Giant Ants, you know' something plausible. Besides, the plot is so implausible and dated that aliens and ants wouldn't be too much of a stretch.