I’m an unashamed fan of John Milius’ Reagan-era slice of propaganda. When I was a kid, I loved it whole-heartedly. As I grew up, and my political awareness broadened, I loved it in a different way. It seemed to me that you just couldn’t make a movie like that now – and that may be a good thing. Well, I seem to have been wrong.
This seems to hit all the same notes as the 1984 film – albeit fairly bloodlessly, judging by what the trailer shows us. Hemsworth is subbing in for Swayze, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan looks to be carrying the Powers Boothe role. It could use more Harry Dean Stanton, but then again, every movie could use more Harry Dean Stanton. Even Repo Man needs more Stanton.
Politically, I just don’t know. The similar Tomorrow When the War Began offended me on a pretty basic level; I understood why they needed to put faces on the anonymous aggressors of the source novel, but making them Asian struck me as a piss-poor choice. Australia, for all its claims to multiculturalism, is a very white country, with a history of dubious racial and immigration policies, and making what amounts to a Yellow Peril film in the wake of that is just nuts. Here, though, I’m not so bothered by the North Korean (formerly Chinese – go look up the film’s weird gestation if you’re not familiar with it – it’s interesting) villains. I’m not sure why; that’ll require some navel gazing to figure out.
Anyway, here’s the trailer for the 1984 Red Dawn, just for the hell of it.