7.5/10
18,440
136 user 57 critic

Reds (1981)

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A radical American journalist becomes involved with the Communist revolution in Russia, and hopes to bring its spirit and idealism to the United States.

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Won 3 Oscars. Another 19 wins & 34 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Hector Babenco
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Meryl Streep, Carroll Baker
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... John Reed
... Louise Bryant
... Max Eastman
... Grigory Zinoviev
... Eugene O'Neill
... Louis Fraina
... Emma Goldman
... Paul Trullinger
... Speaker - Liberal Club
... Mr. Partlow
... Mrs. Partlow
MacIntyre Dixon ... Carl Walters
Pat Starr ... Helen Walters
Eleanor D. Wilson ... Mrs. Reed
... Floyd Dell
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Storyline

American journalist John Reed journeys to Russia to document the Bolshevik Revolution and returns a revolutionary. His fervor for left-wing politics leads him to Louise Bryant, then married, who will become a feminist icon and activist. Politics at home become more complicated as the rift grows between reality and Reed's ideals. Bryant takes up with a cynical playwright, and Reed returns to Russia, where his health declines. Written by Jwelch5742

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Not since Gone With The Wind has there been a great romantic epic like it!


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

25 December 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Comrades  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,325,029, 6 December 1981, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$40,382,659
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At one point, Director of Photography Vittorio Storaro nearly quit the project when he and Warren Beatty clashed over the use of the camera. Storaro wanted a dynamic fluid movement, while Beatty wanted static shots. Finally, a compromise was made between the two men. The film would open with static shots, and as it progressed, more camera moves are added. This style had similarly been applied to another film, that being Network (1976). Yet by 2011, Beatty described the process with Storaro this way: "There's no greater cinematographer. We were in total agreement and had continual conversations." See more »

Goofs

The Finnish doctor tells Reed that his blood pressure is too high, but at that time, hypertension was not considered a problem by most doctors, who did not even consider treating it. Not until the mid-'40s did doctors begin to understand the dangers of high blood pressure. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Witness 1: [voiceover] Was that in 1913 or 17? I can't remember now. Uh, I'm, uh, beginning to forget all the people that I used to know, see?
Witness 2: [voiceover] Do I remember Louise Bryant? Why, of course, I couldn't forget her if I tried.
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Crazy Credits

As the credits roll, additional interviews with the 'witnesses' play. See more »

Connections

Featured in Intimate Portrait: Diane Keaton (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Stop Your Ticklin' Me
Written by Jack Little & Walter Hirsch
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

You Forget..
16 November 2008 | by See all my reviews

.

I am old enough to have lived through (probably) three different Americas. These are radically different worlds. It isn't just the mood, styles or state of the economy; its the adoption of a whole cosmology. Religions change under our feet. Family, love, belonging. These things are malleable yet largely beyond our control and we forget what "things were like." Memory always is constructed in terms of the present world.

Always.

So projects like this are necessary. We cannot know who we are unless we remind ourselves who we were.

The ordinary fold here is a romance, folded into grand political actions. Here they are a bit more cerebral than usual, but never getting past the notion of simple justice.

The more unusual and complex fold is that we see a story based on real events and people. Interspersed with that story are interviews of people who were personally involved in the story. These are remarkable, the way they are captured and the way they are edited to overlap with and annotate the story. But much more engaging is that these are enticing people, many with minds and phases that invite us into their faces — made warmer and more open by Beatty's camera. I compare this to the "Up" serious and the contrast is astonishing. True, here we want to be informed about the lives of others, and the "Up" goals pretend that the people randomly selected decades ago are remotely worth knowing.

But these folks are. We want more, simply based on their implicit invitation, and we carry ourselves into the narrative more forcefully, sort of like the characters do. This is folding doing its job and doing it well. They remember. I remember, and therefore am.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.


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