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From out of the sky, Soviet, Nicaraguan, and Cuban troops begin landing on the football field of a Colorado high school. In seconds, the paratroopers have attacked the school and sent a group of teenagers fleeing into the mountains. Armed only with hunting rifles, pistols, and bows and arrows, the teens struggle to survive the bitter winter and the Soviet KGB patrols hunting for them. Eventually, trouble arises when they kill a group of Soviet soldiers on patrol in the highlands. Soon they will wage their own guerrilla warfare against the invading Soviet troops-under the banner of 'Wolverines!' Written by
The story was originally to be set in the real town of Calumet, Michigan. It was moved to a fictionalized version of Calumet, Colorado. Colorado was a more central location within the United States which better fit the story and Calumet, Colorado is actually a tiny former mining town abandoned in the 1970s. See more »
When the boys get to the mountains and are arguing about turning themselves in, right before Jed shows them the shot up radio you can see two men in the background with mustaches and sunglasses on. These are obviously not one of the actors because none of them have mustaches. See more »
Colonel Ernesto Bella:
[writing a letter to his family back home]
I can't remember what it was to be warm. It seems a thousand years since I was a small boy in the sun. How did I come to this high, desolate place where there is nothing but loneliness? So much is lost. I want to look into your eyes and forget. It all seems so far away: a warm house where my shadow never falls; your long, black hair in my hands. There is no more revolution, only you to come back to. I will post my resignation.
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None of the actors are in the opening credits See more »
Just because it's propaganda, doesn't mean it's bad
Anyone who has seen Leni Riefenstahl's "Triumph Des Willens" (Triumph of the Will), the documentary about the Nuremburg Rallies, understands that even the vilest propaganda can attain the status of great art. Without a doubt, Nazism was a force to be despised and resisted, yet "Triumph" remains a fascinating, even great film.
That said, I will not put "Red Dawn" on the same plane as Riefenstahl's work. It is neither as good a film nor as vile propaganda. But it does underscore a point I see running through many of the criticisms of "Red Dawn" that have been posted here. Many of the movie's detractors reject the film out of hand because of its undeniably conservative overtones. This, I believe, is lazy criticism. The movie has an excellent pedigree. I suggest you search on ImDb under John Milius' name to see what other films he has been involved in. Some of his more notable accomplishments include the screenplays of "Jeremiah Johnson" and co-authoring "Apocalypse Now", as well as the notably UNconservative adaptation of "Clear and Present Danger". Basil Poledouris' score is fantastic, with its Copland-esque homages. The touches of authenticity in the film are also admirable, including the indoctrination camp (see the recently published "Gulag" or Koestler's "Darkness at Noon")and "Radio Free America" scenes, not to mention the efforts the filmmakers went to to make the military hardware look Russian (as opposed to Russians flying American aircraft in dismal movies like "Iron Eagle II" and "Rambo"). Yes, Red Dawn is propaganda, but just because it may be, from your perspective, the wrong kind of propaganda, you are not justified in invalidating the whole enterprise. It is slick, well-made, and memorable.
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