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Red Dawn

Released on 02 January 2001

Featuring: Charlie Sheen, C. Thomas Howell & Patrick Swayze

Format: DVD | Rating: 15 years & over

4.0 out of 5 (6 customer reviews) | Write a review

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Also available used from £5.98

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Sold by: SweetBuzzards | visit our store

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Red Dawn opens with one of the most shocking scenes ever filmed; in a peaceful classroom, students see paratroopers land on the varsity football field: the invasion of the United States has begun!

As their town is overrun by foreign nationals, eight teenagers escape to the mountains. Taking the name of their high school football team, the Wolverines, they wage unremitting guerrilla warfare in defence of their parents, their friends and their country.

Powerful, chilling and absolutely gripping, this outstanding film features some of today's most popular stars, including Patrick Swayze, Charlie Sheen, C. Thomas Howell, Lea Thompson, Jennifer Grey, and veteran actor Harry Dean Stanton. When it comes to thrilling entertainment, Red Dawn wins the war with a vengeance!
  • Trivia and Production Notes
  • Original Theatrical Trailer
  • Interactive Menu
  • Scene Access

customer Reviews

 Average rating (6 reviews)


| | See all farnzy's reviews (164)

Top 10  Reviewer Top 10 DVD Reviewer

John Milius has always fancied himself as a latter day Hemingway, a kind of warrior-poet accredited with Jaws, Dirty Harry, and Evel Knievel. His heroes are Patton, MacArthur, and Roosevelt; not your average right-wing American heroes, but mavericks, tyrants, and visionary leaders.
David Thompson wrote of Milius as having, "earned and even provoked the press reputation of a strident, magnum-brandishing reactionary. But he is more than that. He is an anarchist, he is articulate, and he has an unshakable faith in human grandeur." This would seem true from his directorial efforts, Dillinger, Conan The Barbarian, and The Wind and the Lion, but Red Dawn is a rather strange nut to crack.
On the surface it would seem a screaming advert for the survivalist cause. Guns, bow and arrows, camoflauge-kids versus Soviet-Bloc forces and winning would be a middle American dream come true. Of course it also asks the question much like in Zombie movies-what would you do? And secretly most of us would love to be in that situation.
Take away the sub-standard effects(watch out for guns that don't flash, squibs that don't burst) and rather poor editing, ignore the A-Team heroics and somewhere in there is actually an interesting take on American politics.
The militaristic mentality of the States is not just seen as it's saving grace but also the reason it gets invaded in the first place. The NRA member with the bumper sticker, " You can have my gun when you prise it out of my cold, dead, hand," has that very thing done, an ironic commentary on Regan's position with the arms race and Star Wars.
The film tells us that Nato has dissolved leaving America alone and vulnerable to attack. Only Britain remains faithful and is destoyed for doing so. Perhaps such an aggressive stance has set the scene for Nato to leave America to it's fate, or a backhanded swipe at the willingness and ability of mainland Europe to aid them in their hour of need.
This then begs the question, as it does today, of America's place in the world. Should they remain at the forefront of global politics or retreat into the isolationism of the pre WW1 years?
Red Dawn even evokes The Battle of Algiers in places. The entrance of the elite paratroops and their leaders subsequent briefing are a homage to that great film and try to redress the balance of the freedomfighter/terrorist conundrum. Unfortunately the astute political commentary of Algiers is lost and confused amongst Red Dawns B-movie sensibilities.
At the centre of the movie is the young Brat-Pack cast. Sadly, most of their roles are tremendously underwritten; and as fear, betrayal, and loss become an interesting factor their characters are not significantly written enough to give these themes the weight they deserve.
Still, the sight of C. Thomas Howell going toe-to-toe with a Hind helicopter gunship is something to behold, wish fulfilment on a grand scale and the heroic statement that Milius is famous for.

 Red Dawn 80's War!!

| | See all everton4ever's reviews (215)

Top 100  Reviewer Top 100 DVD Reviewer

This is another flick from when i was a kid that i almost forgot about and was glad that i didn't as it's still very entertaining!
The Russians invade the U.s and some school kids save the day, sounds fairly cheesy i know but it's the basis for a different type of film from what every one else was making during the 80's!
Directed by John Milius in 1984 it tells of courage and perciferance against the odds for a group of teens who won't let their country be taken and is a pretty good story all in all! There are some young faced actors with Charlie Sheen and Patrick Swayze being the main characters, now 24 years older!
I picked up a copy for £3.99 and that was a bargain buy as it goes straight into my 80's collection with a few other must have's!!
Nice one Play!

 Sheen & Swayze kick butt!!

| | See all Jobbers's reviews (4)

Wicked film. Its one of those films thats 'so cheesy its good'.

America gets invaded by Cuban and Russians forces and after their school gets shot up Sheen and Swayze, along with some others, flee to the hills were they become guerillas and fight back. its straight into the action from the beinging and ends well, definately worth a watch :-).

Go wolverines.

 Great childhood memory

| | See all Fash1980's reviews (10)

I have watched this film on a number of occasions and loved it everytime. Russians Invade America and a group of school kids form the Wolverines to take on the Russian army...... lol. Red Dawn is great viewing for a teenager.


| | See all MovieAddict's reviews (1336)

Top 10  Reviewer Top 10 DVD Reviewer

As a teenager in 1984 upon the release of this movie the thought of the Russians invading seemed a very real threat. Of course in the end both sides realised the errors of their ways and the walls were torn down. Looking back on this film the synical part of me wants to complain of all the patriotic flag waving. But it's hard to complain about a film that I watched hundreds of times on video. The film has a great retro feel and seeing young Charlie Sheen and Patrick Swayze with his band of Wolverines hide out in the hills and then take the war back to the communist invaders is impossible to dislike, Especially when C.Thomas. Howell screams the war cry "Wolverines!" The bleak mountain settings is great, the action is swift and sharp and mostly done in montage sequences, this is brilliantly corney and enjoyable stuff to this day. If you have watched the much delayed remake with a shrug, then I suggest you see this original as although not technically as slick as the remake it's a much better story and better characters.
Red dawn to this day stands the test of time as a great retro guilty pleasure. "WOLVERINES!"
See If You LIke........
Red Dawn 2012
The Expendables 1 and 2.
Rambo Collection.
War Games.
By Dawns Early Light.
The Day After.
Red Scorpion.
Rocky 4.

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ActorsCharlie Sheen, C. Thomas Howell, Patrick Swayze, Lea Thompson, Ben Johnson, Harry Dean Stanton, Ron O'Neal, Powers Boothe, William Smith, Jennifer Grey & Lane Smith
DirectorJohn Milius
Certificate15 years and over
ScreenWidescreen 1.85:1
LanguagesEnglish ; French ; German ; Italian ; Spanish - Dolby Digital Surround
SubtitlesEnglish ; French ; German ; Italian ; Spanish ; Dutch ; Finnish ; Swedish ; Norwegian ; Danish ; Portuguese ; Polish
Duration1 hour and 49 minutes (approx)
RegionRegion 2 - Will only play on European Region 2 or multi-region DVD players.