MOVIE REVEIW: ‘Red Dawn’ doesn’t live up to original

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

In the reboot of the 1980s movie “Red Dawn,” the North Koreans have developed a new weapon that renders most of the U.S. defenses useless.
With help from the Russians, they invade and take over wide swaths of this great country.
But no one would expect Americans to sit back and take such treatment.
Jed (Chris Hemsworth) is a Marine on leave in Spokane, Wash., when the invasion hits. He takes his brother and a ragtag team into the mountains, where he trains them in a patriotic montage. Before long, the Wolverines are killing North Koreans left and right.
Jed also has to learn to deal with his brother, Matt (Josh Peck). There’s some bad blood for the pair to work through, as they deal death and destruction to the enemy.
It’s not always easy, and the Wolverines suffer losses in the fight. They also get help from the good people of Spokane, as well as a small team of Marines who happen to be at the right spot at the right time.
I was a fan of the original “Red Dawn” (1984) with Patrick Swayze, Charlie Sheen, Lea Thompson, C. Thomas Howell and Jennifer Grey as the resistance fighters.
This update doesn’t follow the original’s plot exactly. There are a couple of clever adaptations and exciting moments, but mostly this is a pale imitation.
In the 2012 edition, the Wolverines run through a lot of crowded streets with stolen rifles and uniforms, which would seem to make them easy targets for the invading army. The filmmakers spent more time thinking about love interests than creating believable battle scenes.
Compared to the update, the 1984 version presented a more realistic resistance force, where the Wolverines used their knowledge of the terrain to their advantage.
I didn’t despise the reboot. There’s something elemental about watching Americans fight for their homes, and I was happy to see a key bad guy get his comeuppance.
As the credits rolled, somebody in the theater clapped, but I was nowhere near ready to go that far.
I give “Red Dawn” a C minus.
It’s showing at Malcos in Tupelo, Oxford, Corinth and Columbus, as well as Hollywood Premier Cinemas in Starkville.
Look for movie reviews in Scene on Thursdays, and listen each Tuesday morning on Wizard 106.7 between 8:30 and 8:45 a.m.

Wizard review
Kelli Karlson with Wizard 106.7 gives “Red Dawn” a B plus.
“It wasn’t as good as the original, but it’s a darn good movie.”

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