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The Worldnutdaily Reviews Red Dawn

Drew Zahn, former minister turned fake journalist, reviews movies for the Worldnutdaily. His primary criteria for such reviews seems to be how well they line up with his political and religious beliefs, so it’s not a surprise that he praises the new remake of Red Dawn because “red-blooded America runs deep” in the movie. What that has to do with anything, I have no idea.

Out of curiosity, I took a look at how film critics from other newspapers and publications reviewed the new “Red Dawn,” a remake of the 1984 cult classic about teenagers taking up guns and defending America from communist invaders.

You’d think from the critics’ condescending sneers that the remake is utter garbage.

“Preposterous,” said one critic of the remake’s premise that North Korea could invade the U.S. today. “Outdated,” said another, suggesting the plot line be relegated to the ancient Cold War and the once-upon-a-time Red Scare.

The only thing that’s “preposterous,” however, is the speed at which these obviously liberal critics leaped to dismiss the movie. I honestly, without hyperbole, wonder if some of them even watched it.

I haven’t. And I won’t. Because this is one of those movies, and there are a lot of them, that you don’t need to see to know it sucks. When comedians are asked about another comedian they’ve seen and consider a hack, it’s common for them to say, “I don’t know so-and-so, but I know his act.” I don’t need to go see every new Tyler Perry movie to know that they’re terrible because I know the movie without seeing it. I know the formula and I know the mark they’re aiming for. And yes, the notion that North Korea is going to invade the United States isn’t just an out-of-date relic of the Cold War, it’s utterly moronic.

For starters, the movie explains that North Korea doesn’t invade without “help,” and that they used a cyber attack on the American financial system and an electromagnetic pulse weapon, or EMP, against the U.S. infrastructure. Furthermore, North Korea only invades the Pacific Northwest, while other enemies attack elsewhere. It’s not really that implausible.

Yes, actually, it is. When was the last time America was invaded? Try the war of 1812. We have the most powerful military the world has ever seen. And we love going to war. Hell, we make up reasons to go to war, creating dangerous enemies out of everyone from the Vietnamese to the Grenadans to Saddam Hussein, none of whom could have been threats to us even under the wildest of imaginations. And the notion that North Korea, a desperately poor and starving nation that can barely build a car, is going to invade the United States and take over the Pacific Northwest is simply laughable.

The remake originally had the Chinese as the bad guys invading America, but in post-production they decided this wasn’t a good idea because China is an important market for movies and that might prevent it from being shown there. So they changed it from China to North Korea — keeping all the footage, mind you, but going through and digitally replacing all the Chinese insignia with North Korean symbols. No need to change the actors or the dialogue or anything, since all those Asians look and sound alike, amirite?

Besides, the original film cast Cuba as the invading force – not the Soviet Union, as is commonly reported – so don’t talk to me about “preposterous.”

Yes, the original version of the movie was also preposterous. Why Zahn thinks that boosts the plausibility of the remake is beyond me.

And as for “outdated,” the Red Scare is far from over, as many Americans outside the leftist worldview recognize. It’s just that the threat of communism in the U.S. now comes from our own public universities, instead of Moscow.

Seriously?

But like the original, the new “Red Dawn” taps into something primal and patriotic, two instincts it seems leftists attempt to drown out of themselves with copious volumes of Starbucks, while the rest of us pickup-driving, gun-toting, Bible-believing, red-blooded Americans can actually relate.

Finally, something accurate: This movie appeals primarily to dumbasses. I think we already knew that.

Comments

  1. Randomfactor says

    the threat of communism in the U.S. now comes from our own public universities

    So why didn’t they have Harvard invading the US? THAT might have been plausible.

  2. jamessweet says

    Re: The whole “I don’t need to see it/read it/etc., because I already know what it’s going to be”, true enough, but I am grateful there are smart people out there that are willing to go down in the trenches and make sure, just in case. :D

  3. tbrandt says

    … from the Vietnamese to the Grenadans to Saddam Hussein, none of whom could have been threats to us even under the wildest of imaginations.

    says Ed, after reviewing Drew Zahn’s review of Red Dawn.

  4. dogmeat says

    Besides, the original film cast Cuba as the invading force – not the Soviet Union, as is commonly reported – so don’t talk to me about “preposterous.”

    Actually this is quite false. In the original movie the US was invaded by the Soviet Union from the north (including airdrops) and a coalition of Latin American communists from the south. Given the time period, and that the Soviet Union had invaded Afghanistan in a manner not that unlike the one portrayed in the movie a few years earlier, this “plot device” was not as utterly idiotic as the modern turd. As an adult looking back, the 80s movie was still a turd, just a bit shinier.

    It’s just that the threat of communism in the U.S. now comes from our own public universities, instead of Moscow.

    I’d love to know where all these communists are. It’s been my experience that a “red-blooded patriotic American” couldn’t identify a communist if one fluttered out of the sky, perched on their shoulder, and tweaked their nose. The fact that so many of them think Hitler was a leftist and Obama is a socialist confirms to me that these terms are all identifiers of some vague spooky bogeymen that they use to scare their kids back into line when they think they’re starting to develop critical thinking skills.

    They’re monster Mad-Libs that go bump in the night.

  5. laurentweppe says

    I’d love to know where all these communists are. It’s been my experience that a “red-blooded patriotic American” couldn’t identify a communist if one fluttered out of the sky, perched on their shoulder, and tweaked their nose.

    Given that the USSR was a corrupt, nepotistic tyranny ruled by an inept self-proclaimed intellectual elite which tried to justify its existence via an extremely demagogic rhetoric, I’d say that your “red-blooded patriotic American” are correct in their assessment that their country is filled with communists: after all, one glance at a mirror is all it takes for them to find one.

  6. D. C. Sessions says

    Sorry, I’m still having a hard time getting past the minor question of how North Korea could even get an invasion force to the United States.

    And by the way, EMP isn’t terribly effective against boomers (and I don’t mean aging hippies.)

  7. says

    The first Red Dawn was, indeed, a serious turd. That didn’t stop my friends in West Nutsack, TN, from praising it for its realism in the depiction of war and geopolitics.

    Several years ago, I watched it again on Joe Bob Briggs’s TV show. His guest was Col. David Hackworth. When Briggs asked him if there was anything realistic about the movie, Hackworth laughed out loud with a resounding “no”. They spent the rest of the movie breaks talking about real war experiences and survivalist techniques.

  8. DaveL says

    In the original movie the US was invaded by the Soviet Union from the north (including airdrops) and a coalition of Latin American communists from the south.

    If I remember correctly, they had the Soviets land in Alaska, then push south to invade through Canada. This is preposterous from a strategic perspective. The land between the Alaskan-Canadian border and major population centers in British Columbia involves a lot of rugged terrain and few good roads, even fewer rated to carry main battle tanks.

    Trying to move an invasion force through there would be a nightmare, and keeping supply lines open would be even worse.

  9. DaveL says

    In the original movie the US was invaded by the Soviet Union from the north (including airdrops) and a coalition of Latin American communists from the south.

    Not to mention the question of how they would maintain control so far from Pyongyang, and so close to the temptations of American consumer culture.

  10. Trebuchet says

    As a godless liberal, albeit one who drives a pickup truck and owns a gun, I’m tempted to cut myself and see what color my blood is. Oh wait, I was playing with the cat yesterday and got punctured. It was red.

  11. Moon Jaguar says

    Was there actual film criticism in there somewhere? If so, it was invaded and quickly overwhelmed by the army of Lies and Mendacity.

  12. dingojack says

    Trebuchet – whew, lucky it wasn’t green –
    otherwise you’d be a vulcan!!eleventy1
    Dingo

  13. Michael Heath says

    Drew Zahn writes:

    . . . the threat of communism in the U.S. now comes from our own public universities, instead of Moscow.

    I was continuously warned this was a fact when I was growing up. Yet I still attended one of Michigan’s biggest public universities, Michigan State University, from 1985 – 1989 when I was 25 my freshman year. By then I realized conservative Christians are unable to tell the truth on certain topics.

    I was surprised to find so many profs both profess their beliefs and political ideology and assert they were liberal Christians and politically moderate. In Michigan that meant consistent with our long-time governor William Milliken, Michigan’s President Gerald Ford, and Mitt’s dad, George Romney – all Republicans. They all took positions best exemplified in these times by the black Nazi-commie Muslim-atheist currently living in the White House.

    Since so many of the students that attend MSU come from agricultural (rural) areas, I assume these profs were motivated to falsify this false narrative that so many students heard in their homes and conservative churches. Of course those who need to know this fact are unwilling and incapable of accepting the inconvenient fact our universities are not a hot bed of influential communists sufficient enough to pose a threat to the U.S.

  14. slc1 says

    Re DaveL @ #11

    The land between the Alaskan-Canadian border and major population centers in British Columbia involves a lot of rugged terrain and few good roads, even fewer rated to carry main battle tanks.

    A little caution is in order. The French high command in 1940 said the same thing about the Ardennes. They were given a rude awaking when the spearheads of the German Panzers showed up south of that region.

  15. mas528 says

    I cannot be the only person who has made the connection about “red”?

    In my version of “red dawn”, it would be about the red states attacking the USA from within.

    Where good decent liberals fight against the conservative religious fascists.

    Perhaps a prequel to “Handmaid’s Tale”.

  16. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    It’s just that the threat of communism in the U.S. now comes from our own public universities, instead of Moscow.

    So, the remake should have crack units of biology and gender studies professors, issuing from their secret lairscampus offices, annihilating the National Guard and then the regular army with lectures on evolution by natural selection, and the iniquities of the kyriarchy?

  17. sivivolk says

    @s1c1: I suspect the distance involved are quite a bit bigger, and the Rockies are quite bit more imposing than the Ardennes.

    I’m surprised the author didn’t mention how in the new movie, a reporter announces that all the blue states have fallen and only the armed red states are holding out.

  18. spamamander, internet amphibian says

    @22

    All the blue states have fallen? Apparently none of them have been to this ‘liberal paradise’ that is Washington… the vast majority of the state is rural, populated with rednecks with guns. Fuck yeah!

    -weeps quietly-

  19. says

    slc1 “A little caution is in order. The French high command in 1940 said the same thing about the Ardennes. They were given a rude awaking when the spearheads of the German Panzers showed up south of that region.”
    A little realism is in order. Even beyond the Soviets having to rush Alaska without the Alaskans noticing, compared to the Ardennes BC is ridiculously larger, bumpier, and a third thing.
    In any event, there’s simply no way they could mount a Superpower nation-taking column of tanks and troops and support vehicles the 1,600 mile distance between the Yukon and Washington without getting ticketed by the RCMP for not having proper plates.

  20. says

    slc1:

    I’m with sivivolk on the differences between the Ardennes and the landmass that sits between Alaska and the lower 48. The length and “serviceability” of the Alcan Highway is covered, briefly, here:

    http://www.thehistorychannelclub.com/articles/articletype/articleview/articleid/1667/the-alcan-highway

    Aside from the fact that there is no other “through” road, there isn’t much in the way side roads or human habitation in the area. Call me a cynic, but I’m guessing that our gummint has the road dialed in for everything from mortars to nukes and would not hesitate to use them to slow down any invasion. The canadians might also get involved.

  21. dogmeat says

    A little caution is in order. The French high command in 1940 said the same thing about the Ardennes. They were given a rude awaking when the spearheads of the German Panzers showed up south of that region.

    Sorry SLC, your comparison is almost comical.

    First, it isn’t as if Alaska borders the Soviet Union. There is the little matter of a stretch of nasty arctic sea between the two. The Soviet Union didn’t have a significant port anywhere near the narrowest part of the straights, so simply crossing isn’t an option. Add to that they didn’t have any significant military units within a thousand km of the nearest port city. They would have to move army sized units from their normal locations in the west to Vladivostok without the United States noticing (not happening).

    Second, they’d have to have the amphibious capability to move those units to Alaska itself, a capability the Soviet Union never had. It’s the same reason Hitler never invaded England. He didn’t need amphibious capability to invade the Ardennes. For the Soviets that would also have involved marshaling a massive naval force out of Vladivostok without the US Navy noticing. Again, not happening. Assuming it did, the US would nuke Vladivostok and cut their supply capability instantly.

    Third, as has already been pointed out, Alaska and NW Canada are to the Ardennes as Mount Hood is to Olympus Mons. The entire region is less than 12,000 sq km, maximum altitude is less than 700 m, and while rugged, was crisscrossed with roads and bridges. The Northwest is virtually devoid of roads to begin with, those that do exist have few, if any bridges capable of supporting main battle tanks. Not to mention that the US would blast the hell out of every pass through the mountains.

    Fourth, pardon my language, but who the fuck invades Alaska in October?

    f I remember correctly, they had the Soviets land in Alaska, then push south to invade through Canada. This is preposterous from a strategic perspective.

    DaveL,

    I agree. If I remember correctly, the attack that hit the kids’ school was explained as an airborne strike designed to close the mountain passes so the main invasion force in Alaska could link up with the Latin American forces coming up from Mexico. Utterly idiotic plan. A diversionary strike into Alaska to deny the oil fields and cut the pipeline perhaps, but if you wanted to invade the US from the west you would hit Vancouver, Seattle, San Francisco, etc. Heck, have the southern assault force hit San Diego and waltz in all protected like… ;o)

  22. shouldbeworking says

    I’m amazed the “writers” didn’t have the UN and Canada aspartame of the invasion forces. That would be right out of the Teabrain Party world. If they had Mexico invading, the movie would be called a horror flick instead f a thriller/action movie.

  23. says

    What dogmeat said, although a good deal of the reason Hitler didn’t invade Britain was that he failed to get control of the air over the Channel. Also note that the straights between Alaska and Russia are more than twice the straights of Dover and that the Russians are well aware of the power of cold climates against invaders, I mean that’s a good deal of what stopped both Napoleon and Hitler from squishing them!

  24. grendelsfather says

    Michael Heath @ 17

    I was surprised to find so many profs …were liberal Christians and politically moderate.

    Although they may have seemed to be mainstream positions to an undergraduate in the 1980′s, liberal theology and political moderation are the very hallmarks of a communist these days.

    You would know this if you watched more Fox news.

  25. fentex says

    I liked the original Red Dawn, I thought it had a lot of heart.

    So what if it’s plot was fantasy? Unreality was no bar to my enjoying The Avengers either.

  26. vmanis1 says

    Once you can get to central BC, from then on you can pretty much rely on freeways from then on. The problem is getting there. Presumably the Soviets of the original `Red Dawn’ arrived at Fairbanks and took the Richardson Highway/Alcan Highway, and then connected to BC highways to get to Prince George. I believe that’s mostly all 2-lane blacktop, so you might have trouble getting tanks through there, but troop transports with rockets, maybe. Once you get to Kamloops, there’s a divided highway to Abbotsford, which is just north of the U.S. border. There’s a border crossing at Sumas, again 2-lane blacktop, or maybe you go thru fields. You can join I-5 near Bellingham.

    According to Google Maps, the driving time from Fairbanks to Abbotsford is about 41 hours. That’s assuming absolutely no road closures or the like (these are frequent occurrences, in winter and even in summer). And the area is sparsely enough populated that there’s rarely an alternate route in northern BC, so if a road is closed, you’re stuck.

    And all of this assumes that the Canadian military, noticing that the Soviet military were there, didn’t simply blow up the roads (or especially bridges).

    Oh, and by the way, how did the Red Army get to Fairbanks? Presumably they landed on the coast, near Anchorage, and took Highway 3 up to Fairbanks, with the U.S. military allowing them to pass. (And, no, there is no direct highway between Anchorage and BC.)

    When a film is based on this degree of stupidity and illogic, it’s fair to wonder why there was no laugh track. In fact, the only interest I have in seeing the remake is to see whether they kept the little bit about it being necessary to pee in a truck radiator in order to repel the invaders. I thought that was very funny.

  27. vmanis1 says

    I left off a point. How does the invading force get supplied? There’s no countryside to live off, so you have to bring your food and fuel with you. The USSR, having survived invasions by both Napoleon and Hitler, would of course be ignorant of this issue. Yeah, right.

  28. Randomfactor says

    In my version of “red dawn”, it would be about the red states attacking the USA from within.

    Now that would sell at the box office. Of course, the movie would end with the invading force dropping dead from a deus-ex-machina microbe contracted by poor hygiene.

  29. conway says

    I’m an unapologetic fan of the original Red Dawn. It’s a teenaged boy’s fantasy. Think of how it starts: A boy sits in class, bored out of his mind. He looks out the window and sees the Bad Guys landing! The grown-ups act like idiots. Only me and my friends can save us!

    I made that movie in my mind a hundred times before I ever saw it.

  30. says

    vmanis1 “According to Google Maps, the driving time from Fairbanks to Abbotsford is about 41 hours.”
    “Comrade, to be driving from here to there in tank of T72 type, average of speed must be 40 my-ells per hour.”
    “But Comrade, speed that is top for tank of that type is 37!”
    “Relax, Comrade, I have plan. We get Central Committee make hour to be more long.”
    “Perfect, Comrade! Problems is solve!”

  31. vmanis1 says

    Of course, the one accurate documentary on a Soviet invasion of America, Norman Jewison’s `The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming’, has Alan Arkin responding to an accusation that his men are Russians with the line `We are of course Norwegians, on a small training exercise for NATO’.

    One of my favorite films.

  32. says

    “So what if it’s plot was fantasy? Unreality was no bar to my enjoying The Avengers either.”

    The Avengers were fighting against other comic book figures.

    You can bet your sweet ass that Jerry Boykin is all over the impending “Invasion of the Garlic Eaters”, up to and including pre-targeting all of the Korean groceries in LA.

    Modusoperandi:

    It’s jet packs. Jet packs all the way down.

  33. Rob says

    “…1984 cult classic …”

    I agree, if by that he means a piece of shallow paranoid redneck jingoistic crap.

  34. slc1 says

    Re dogmeat @ #27

    Mr. dogmeat, as usual, failed to understand the scenario. The assumption was that the Soviet Army successfully invaded Alaska and occupied it. I would agree with Mr. dogmeat that that scenario is dubious at best for the reasons he cited.

    However, given the scenario that Alaska was invaded and successfully occupied, the question remains as to whether an invasion of the US via British Columbia was feasible. My only point was that the US high command should not make the same assumption that the French high command made relative to the Ardennes in 1940, namely that the existing roads in that region would not support armored forces, and thus fail to account for the possibility and make plans accordingly.

  35. DaveL says

    the existing roads in that region would not support armored forces, and thus fail to account for the possibility and make plans accordingly.

    I think you misunderstand. It’s not that there aren’t any roads that can carry a main battle tank (I don’t really know for sure), it’s that there are so few roads to begin with. In a previous life, I was a reservist with an armoured regiment whose main task was brigade-level reconnaissance. On the advance, that meant route recce. A situation like the Alcan highway is a tank commander’s worst nightmare. It means the defenders will know exactly where you’re coming from. It means every time those defenders blow a bridge you’re going to be losing boatloads of time rebuilding it; there are no bypasses. It means all they have to do is hit your lead callsign in the tracks, and then your entire column is stuck right where they want you. It means if they hit the road behind you, your lead elements are cut off without resupply, and MBTs don’t go far on their own. The highway tends to follow valleys, so it means you could be ambushed anywhere, and you’d be stuck in the low ground with nowhere to go. It means this situation is going to drag on and on, for hundreds or thousands of miles, and if they can delay you until winter (which they easily can), you’re utterly screwed.

  36. otrame says

    To me, the question is not how realistic the bloody movie is. Of course it is not realistic. But next comes suspending a little disbelief. A good movie will help with that, but in order to believe that the US has been substantially invaded without assistance from the Sontarans, we have to use our serious suspend disbelief boosters. No problem. I mean, just how many James Bond movies have you seen, anyway?

    So then the question is, does this movie, given the premise, work? Does it, ignoring the obvious absurdities, provide good action/adventure? Are the details, again ignoring the overarching silliness, reasonable? Is the script (once more, ad nauseum, ignoring impossibilities) well written? Do the actors do a good job of making it seem real?

    Well the original one certainly didn’t. I doubt the new one will either, for a number of reasons. But I am perfectly willing to believe that a good movie with that absurd premise could be made.

    It’s just not very likely.

  37. slc1 says

    Re DaveL @ #41

    In 1940, the French high command assumed that the Ardennes was impassible for armored vehicles and made no reconnaissance of the area, and had no backup plan in case they were wrong (the forces deployed at the exits from the Ardennes had no armored vehicles and in addition were reserve divisions with little training in anti-tank tactics; unfortunately, most the British and French armored forces moved into Belgium in anticipation of a repeat of the 1914 Schlieffen plan by the enemy).

    In the scenario that Mr. DaveL is describing, the US military takes active steps to prevent any use of the roads through Northern BC, which the French did not do in the Ardennes in 1940.

  38. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    I mean, just how many James Bond movies have you seen, anyway? – otrame

    None, as it happens; an achievement I’m rather proud of.

  39. says

    I’m an Alaskan. I could offer my expert opinion about getting from the population centers of AK to the population centers Canada (it would be Edmonton, Alberta and not anywhere in BC, by the way) but I think that dead horse (which is a town in AK, by the way) has been very well flogged. My quibble is with something Ed said:

    When was the last time America was invaded? Try the war of 1812.

    That’s only true if you don’t count Alaska as part of America. Alaska was invaded by the Japanese in 1942 and they stayed longer than the British did in 1812.

  40. vmanis1 says

    slc1 @ 43

    However, given the scenario that Alaska was invaded and successfully occupied, the question remains as to whether an invasion of the US via British Columbia was feasible. My only point was that the US high command should not make the same assumption that the French high command made relative to the Ardennes in 1940, namely that the existing roads in that region would not support armored forces, and thus fail to account for the possibility and make plans accordingly.

    Excuse me, slc1, Canada has a military. It is indeed quite small, but is highly regarded (ask the folks in Kandahar about that). No doubt we’d welcome U.S. cooperation, but northern B.C. is Canadian territory, and our military would take the lead in defending it.

    It seems common that a superpower thinks it, and its enemies, are the only things that matter in the world. In the early 20th century, when the British Empire was real, the Times of London ran a headline: `Fog descends on [English] Channel, Continent Isolated’. Similarly, Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle once wrote a book called Footfall, in which they needed an isolated location to launch spacecraft from. They chose Bellingham, WA, I suppose because it’s right near the edge of the map. The authors even visited Bellingham to scout out locations, and in the book thanked the people of Bellingham for their hospitality. Only problem: Bellingham is about 20 minutes drive from the Canadian border, and right on the other side of that you have Metro Vancouver, with a population of a couple of million. I wonder how the authors could have missed that. `Oh, that’s a Canadian city, the aliens won’t be watching it’, perhaps?

  41. darrylldennis says

    Dammit!!! You smart asses have all the answers covered! That’s what I get for being late to the party. It is uplifting to know there are still smart, sane people hangin’ around . . .

    @Modusoperandi @dogmeat: That smackdown of slc1′s comment? Sublime…

    – babyskep

  42. darrylldennis says

    @slc1 #40:

    The point being that the original premise is not only ludicrous on its face, but deep down all the way to its roots makes your original comparison of a hypothetical invasion of the U.S. via the Alaskan badlands (in winter, no less, as dogmeat pointed out) with the German invasion of France simply farcical.

    Challenge the premise. I’m actually surprised you retorted with such an explanation of your post with so many here accustomed to critically thinkin’ ’bout shyt. I would’ve just said, “Yeah, you’re right. That was stupid.”

  43. dogmeat says

    Mr. dogmeat, as usual, failed to understand the scenario. The assumption was that the Soviet Army successfully invaded Alaska and occupied it. I would agree with Mr. dogmeat that that scenario is dubious at best for the reasons he cited.

    Actually I didn’t fail to understand the scenario, your arguments aren’t 1/10th as deep as you think you are. I was trying to explain why your assumptions were so silly, you appear to be too dull to pick up on that. I refuted your “warning” and then went beyond your moronic scenario because it was founded upon nonsense. You compare a strategic blunder from the “toddler days” of armored warfare to a totally dissimilar battlefield scenario.

    *IF* you assume a successful invasion of Alaska, an idiotic assumption given the reasons I cited above @27, you still have the problems you failed to address.

    My only point was that the US high command should not make the same assumption that the French high command made relative to the Ardennes in 1940, namely that the existing roads in that region would not support armored forces, and thus fail to account for the possibility and make plans accordingly.

    Your point remains naive and more than a bit amusing. The sheer size of the region negates any similarities. A blunder of the type the French made could be corrected long before any invasion force could reach a strategically critical point. Add to that the far more rugged terrain, satellite coverage, and modern air capabilities, and the idea of such an operation becomes truly laughable.

    Attempting to move multiple armored and mechanized *DIVISIONS* through the region while engaging hostile defenders simply isn’t feasible. Soviet era MBTs weighed 40 tons plus meaning that few of the bridges, even assuming Canadian and US battlefield commanders would be stupid enough to leave them intact, would be able to handle the weight. Airstrikes and helicopters would tear apart any armored command trying to move through the mostly confined spaces of the Canadian Rockies, at the same time they’d be blasting the hell out of any engineers trying to bridge rivers, etc. Plus Canadian troops are tough as hell, especially in winter operations. Add in the 10th Mountain for support and I’d almost pity any Soviet formation.

    It’s why the Nordkapp scenario wasn’t (to my knowledge) anything more than a sidebar to a Fulda Gap invasion of Germany back in the 80s. Attempting to invade mountainous terrain with mechanized units is problematic to begin with, when you add in winter, proximity near the arctic circle; it becomes a meat-grinder.

    In 1940 the Germans ran into some of the problems I outlined above, they had four routes through the Ardennes, unless a Soviet invasion force attempted to drive straight east (where the hell they’d be going is beyond me) I don’t think there are four routes such a force could move through the region. In addition, the Germans were supplying their invasion force right across their own border, a Soviet drive through Canada would be virtually impossible to supply. Think of it more like the Battle of the Bulge in ’44 rather than the Battle of France in ’40.

  44. lorn says

    The ’84′ version of Red Dawn was a fairly good action story with the good guys kicking it and the bad guys taking it. But half way through it gets dark.

    The second half, and in the end, the movie, taken as a whole, deeply undercut the right wing meme. The good guys end up isolated, cold, hungry, hunted because they lacked access to supply lines and manpower. They can kill and maim but they cannot roll back the occupation because they cannot occupy territory or stay still long enough to build.

    This is the classic problem with insurgencies. The insurgents can inflict pain and prevent restoration of normality but only at a cost of constant loss of personnel and materiel. The occupier ends up locked in battle of attrition. The larger force, having greater depth, holds the field.

    The movie was deeply disturbing for those with a survivalist/patriot mindset. Their assumptions are that small arms and small groups can stand up to an organized force independent of any larger structure and win. Military history, and the movie, show that any resistance has to have, or have access to, an organization with considerable depth to provide supplies and make good their losses.

    Many on the right hold Rambo as their ideal without understanding that the military has long known that small groups of even highly trained and well equipped warriors are almost useless as a military force. A small group is just a few injuries away from uselessness. They have some utility as coast watchers (WW2), spies (WW1), assassins and saboteurs (Vietnam), targeting (Afghanistan), but in those rolls they do not fight directly. They hide, observe, undertake very limited efforts, and report.

    Those who go the way of the Wolverines end up dead in a shockingly short time. Which may not be too high a cost if you are dedicated. But survivalist, as their name implies, are patriotic and dedicated, but not to the point of death.

    The movie, on the surface seems to be anti-Russian and Cuban but those are just the masks chosen for the standard bad guys. Even they get humanized in the end as the plight of the occupier gets some light. Far from home and people you care about you live in constant fear of insurgents you always outgun, but still you take casualties because they keep coming.

    As a vehicle for vilifying Russians and Cubans the movie fails because it requires a grand invasion, an invasion they are unmotivated to, and largely incapable of, pulling off. In that light they look less like monsters. The difference is so clear that they are not necessarily the people being depicted in the movie. It would seem to be as applicable to US forces as Soviet bloc.

    In many ways it anti-war. It depicts the frustration of all sides. Invaders who cannot rebuild and profit, a resistance that can punish and suffer but not end the occupation, and the neutral populations on both sides who feed their children and treasure into a meat grinder.

    If anything it is a warning to anyone attempting to benefit from war. Perhaps those who thought invasion of Iraq was a good thing suffered not from too many viewings of Red Dawn, but too few.

  45. says

    The remake originally had the Chinese as the bad guys invading America, but in post-production they decided this wasn’t a good idea because China is an important market for movies and that might prevent it from being shown there.

    That’s all you need to know about this leaden turkey: people glorifying the killing of Commie invaders make a last-minute plot change because they’re scared of losing out on Commie money. This just shows how empty and mentally bankrupt America’s brave “anti-Communist” crusaders really are. I really don’t have the words to describe how babyish and hypocritical this movie — and its chickenshit-chickenhawk makers — are. Phony on top, phony underneath.

    So they changed it from China to North Korea — keeping all the footage, mind you, but going through and digitally replacing all the Chinese insignia with North Korean symbols.

    In terms of production values, this takes it down toward the level of “Innocence of Muslims.” And they spent how much on it?

  46. says

    Far from home and people you care about you live in constant fear of insurgents you always outgun, but still you take casualties because they keep coming.

    I thought you said the insurgents didn’t stand a chance, because they were cut off from population centers that could support them (probably because they’re all wussy liberals and easy to subdue). Make up your mind, willya?

  47. dogmeat says

    ‘Bee,

    lorn’s point is a good one. It’s why the Brits lost in 1783, why we lost in ’75, why the Soviets lost in ’89.

    What the delusional survivalists always seem to forget is that the insurgents usually end up bled white during the course of the conflict. If you’re willing to make the sacrifice, and refuse to “play fair,” insurgencies can and often do win, but the individual insurgents don’t generally live to see the end of the game. In the original Red Dawn the “Wolverines” lost something like 8 out of the 10 members of their merry little band. The only reason any of them survived is because the Swayze character sends the two youngest kids to “safety” (always wondered why, if it was so easy, they hadn’t done so months before).

  48. jakc says

    the original was dumb, but without much of a political axe to grind; the remake seems to be loaded for bear in that regard, as if it were made by people who think Ayn Rand is a profound thinker.

    as for this comment from Mr Zahn
    ” It’s just that the threat of communism in the U.S. now comes from our own public universities, instead of Moscow”

    Umm, we have a public university in Moscow. It’s the University of Idaho . . . and yes, they voted for Obama

  49. katenrala says

    I saw Red Dawn, the 1984 version, on televison just last week, Tuesday night maybe.

    I couldn’t help but wonder how the hell these kids lasted so long. I couldn’t believe that they would even be able to just survive away from civilization as long as they did, which broke any suspension of disbelief even if I could go along with the premise. The movie strained my sense of belief almost as hard as Avatar.

    -The teens never had a proper camp with even a place to crap.
    -The teens “hunted” and managed to feed themselves just on meat without shortages or nutritional problems. Oh and they made fires without getting spotted.
    -The women weren’t treated like shit, as if red state teen jocks would accept them as equals in 1984, in that kind of situation.
    -The teens could attack and ambush with impunity, as if a trained army couldn’t guard their aircraft, or send a proper patrol out.
    -The teens somehow knew how to make sophisticated explosives, and get the supplies for them.
    -The teens sprayed and prayed and yet always managed to have enough ammo, even though captured ammo from the soldiers they killed would hardly be enough to last one fight.

    Maybe I could accept the movie’s premise and the teens being big heroes if it had not seemed to take itself seriously; and if conservatives and gun fanatics and right-wing survivalist wannabes didn’t take it seriously; and if it didn’t have obvious an anti-immigrant slant; and it was just all-around acknowledged to be escapist wish-fulfillment fantasy.

  50. katenrala says

    It’s funny, though not funny haha, that conservatives often say liberals don’t like media with conservative themes because they are liberal. It never seems to cross their mind, at least the minds of those saying such things, that maybe liberals didn’t like the film or book or whatever because it is a bad piece of media.

    The Dark Knight and Dark Knight Rises are two films that come immediately to mind with very conservative, even objectivist bents, but they weren’t bad films though I wouldn’t say they were good for me.

    I wonder if conservatives use the like or dislike of particular media as a shorthand for group identification, that is if you don’t like x, then you must be a liberal, instead of you not liking x because you simply didn’t like it.

    I don’t remember witnessing the same with liberals or progressives, but has anyone observed liberals and progressives stating that if one didn’t like a piece of media with liberal or progressive themes, then one is a conservative?

  51. slc1 says

    Re dogmeat @ #49

    Mr. dogmeat makes my point, even though he’s too stupid to understand why. If the US high command had made the same assumption that the French high command made in 1940 relative to the feasibility of armored forces pushing through British Columbia and deployed their forces elsewhere, the Russian advance would have been in Southern BC before the US could redeploy to oppose the advance. It should also be pointed out that the bulk of the Canadian armed forces is deployed in Eastern Canada.

  52. katenrala says

    Sorry to make another post, but I’ve been thinking about what Lorn said.

    Lorn @ 50:

    While the film shows these things I don’t think it can be described as an anti-war film or as a warning or as an example of what really happens to insurgencies as at least the way the right receives it .

    (Of course I agree with the whole death of the author concept and your interpretation and messages you get from the film is valid too)

    I don’t know how many here are acquainted with right-wing gun culture and the people that seem to be drawn to gun fanatics or are gun fanatics, but I waded through a lot of that muck when researching weapons and bullets so I could make informed and educated purchases when it came to my guns. Ugh, I even had to go to gun stores where these types worked and hung out and verbally waved their cocks at each other.

    A lot of these people, and I had a “friend” (not a friend) who was one of them, strongly believe or at least are quick to say and passionate in doing so, that they would do what the Wolverines did in the film and fight invaders with their measly assault and battle rifles and pistols and go all survivalist and the like and go down fighting even if it was a losing proposition. To them the Wolverines, and real life, especially romanticized Revolutionary War counterparts are role models. They want glory; they want to kill the “bad guys”; and they want to be remembered as patriots and heroes which is as the Wolverines are remembered as being in the film.

    It struck me only after a short time that these people are essentially death seekers who think the value of their life is measured in how they died, as they love citing recent and ancient events in history and classical works where people, instead of being prudent, fought to the death and where therefor remembered. They want “molon labe” and “remember the Alamo” carved on their guns. Their forum footnotes also have all sorts of references to this crap and their chose of avatars are often a reference to such things too, or an expression of their hatred for liberals and leftists.

    They dream of being backpack survivalists, just grabbing their “bug out” bag of guns and ammo and some camping gear and disappearing into the wild, to come back and take pot shots at the “bad guys.” One should see the photos of their arms, lovingly laid out, posed, and lit, and photos of their boxes and boxes full of loaded and numbered magazines and ammo crates. Or even the photos of themselves cradling their favorite “baby” or photos of themselves like than infamous photo after the prop 8 stink where the guy was aiming a weapon, a .50 cal I think, and his shirt said “vote from the roof tops.” It’s quite educational to visit their forums to see how bent these people are. I do recommend visiting AR15.com (I think) which was a forum I lurked on just to gain info on various guns, or google stuff like .45 vs .357 as one will land o a forum of these guys.

    There are also the magazines they read, which I read as I have a buddy with a machine shop who had a commission to machine a bunch of ar-15 lower receivers and the guy who commissioned him left a ton of gun fanatic magazines for my friend. They are chock full of disturbing opinions, ads, “humor” like liberal hunting licenses, and anxious masculinity. (Amusingly some of the stuff is outright homoerotic though I don’t think they notice, like an ad for a Barret M82 in which a near nude woman is holding it erect, stock on the ground, and the text was asking the reader if they are a big enough boy to handle the weapon, handle a 5ft cock… yeah, perfectly heterosexual. Maybe it’s a form of futanari. NSFW term to google.)

    It’s 4am, maybe I’m rambling, but to reiterate I think it’s very probable that Red Dawn is cherished on the right because the teens fought and died with glory and the right’s twisted sense of honor because it shows them getting slaughtered at the end. Martyrdom.

  53. dingojack says

    And here’s how Denmark handled an invasion by the Nazis.

    Arne Sejr’s ten commandments for the Danish People
    1. You must not go to work in Germany and Norway.
    2. You shall do a bad job for the Germans.
    3. You shall work slowly for the Germans.
    4. You shall destroy important machines and tools.
    5. You shall destroy everything that may be of benefit to the Germans.
    6. You shall delay all transport.
    7. You shall boycott German and Italian films and papers.
    8. You must not shop at Nazis’ stores.
    9. You shall treat traitors for what they are worth.
    10. You shall protect anyone chased by the Germans.
    Join the Struggle for the freedom of Denmark!

    Not quite as exciting, but a lot more effective, (and puzzling for the Germans).

    :) Dingo

  54. azportsider says

    The 1984 version of “Red Dawn” was undoubtedly the worst movie ever made. So now some moron wants to remake that loser? No, I won’t see it. There’s no need; it’ll be as ridiculous as the original.

  55. anteprepro says

    and an electromagnetic pulse weapon, or EMP, against the U.S. infrastructure.

    lolwut?

    (searches internet)

    The film adopts a fringe conspiracy theory that has long been pushed by a small, right-wing coalition led by Newt Gingrich: that terrorists or a rogue state could devastate America with an electro-magnetic pulse, or EMP. The idea is that detonating a nuclear weapon way up in the stratosphere would send out an EMP that would fry all of our electronics, from helicopters to coffee makers, easing the way for a foreign invasion. In fact, EMP is untested at best and ineffective at worst; studies suggest it might actually stop as little as five percent of electronics. Even if it did work, America is really big and knocking out our entire lower 48 would require many, many more warheads than North Korea could possibly possess.

    I don’t know whether the explanation makes it more hilarious or more sad.

  56. dingojack says

    I wonder if WhirledNutsDaily knows that all them guerrillas practicing sabotage are really just following the example of them evul, socialist surrender-eating cheese monkeys?
    ;) Dingo

  57. dogmeat says

    Mr. dogmeat makes my point, even though he’s too stupid to understand why.

    This is getting as pathetic and idiotic as your bloodthirsty support of Israel. Just admit you didn’t know what the fuck you were talking about and drive on. Stomping your feet and saying “nuh uh! Was too, was too, right!” Doesn’t make you any less pathetic.

    ———-

    katenrala@58,

    I agree, there is that “he died with his boots on” sort of juvenile bravado about fighting “tha man” (whoever the hell that is) and going down in a blaze of glory to some of these gun nuts. Some honestly believe they can take on fully equipped and trained troops toe-to-toe and win, others know they’d die but celebrate “the cause.”

    I think what lorn and I were referring to had more to do with the author’s intent than the promotion of the film or the reaction of the audience. I read a bit of the background and it seems to make sense. Sounds like the original story was more of a Lord of the Flies meets Soviet invasion that morphed into WOLVERINES when they turned it into an action story. I kind of wonder what the movie would have been like had it stayed more true to the original story. One of the areas I think this pokes through is the error (one among too many to count) of having only the small groups of kids in the resistance group. A group as successful as they are portrayed in the movie would run into the problem of having dozens, potentially hundreds of recruits trying to join them. Also the most likely method for destroying the organization as you slip agents into the organization. I think Braveheart did a good job with that one in the scene where the King of Ireland kills the assassin.

    ———-
    anteprepro,

    The EMP nuts have been around for decades. Like most right-wing nutcases, they ignore the actual science behind the concept and slip into a bizarre world where a briefcase sized weapon can wipe out hundreds or thousands of square miles of electronics (leaves me kind of wondering what it would do to the guy with the briefcase).

    Way back in the dark ages I was picking up a buddy at his National Guard center (we were in ROTC together). When I got there they were trying to figure out how to fit the radio unit into the new Hummer they’d gotten with room for the Faraday cage to protect it.

  58. dingojack says

    I wonder if these red-dawn-remake types has ever seen the classic ‘The Conversation’ (1974)?
    Dingo

  59. dingojack says

    So – let’s recap:
    The PRK, despite hardly being able to feed it’s own population, somehow manges to launch a shed-load of nukes to create a massive EMP over US territory without alerting the Americans, or anyone else.
    Then they either:
    a) Manage to amass a large amphibious fleet (again without anyone twigging), and evading the Chinese, Russian, Japanese or American Navies to invade Alaska and/or the Pacific Northwest
    b) Push across Russian territory, past sensitive naval assets in the Northern Pacific across the frozen north (in winter remember) into Alaska, across Canadian territory and into the US’s Pacific Northwest, without alerting Russia, China, Japan, Canada, The Commonwealth, NATO, the EU or the UN.

    Somehow there are enough troops to invade the US and hold off the Russians, Chinese and South Koreans (plus the Japanese and US) from invading their homeland. And somehow they can maintain a line of supply to their impoverished homeland.

    And, of course, the PKR troops won’t just immediately surrender and defect.

    Yep, that’s realistic.

    Makes ‘Fatal Attraction’ and ‘Total Recall’ seem like paragons of plausibility.

    Dingo

  60. abb3w says

    There’s been rumors floating about that the original script notion was for China to invade, which was rather more militarily plausible than Cuba or North Korea; however, the producers were informed such a film would have zero chance of being distributed.

    Maybe the company will try a remake of “Birth of a Nation” next.

  61. says

    “Makes ‘Fatal Attraction’ and ‘Total Recall’ seem like paragons of plausibility.”

    I’m waiting for them to make, “Total Attraction” or “Fatal Recall”.

    @ 66:

    “Rebirth of a Nation”?

  62. says

    Actually, abb3w, the Red Dawn remake was filmed with the Chinese as the baddies. Then the studio got cold feet about losing the Chinese boxoffice for the film and changed the baddies to North Koreans, delaying the release of the film. It was supposed to be out a year or more ago.

  63. Ichthyic says

    And here’s how Denmark handled an invasion by the Nazis.

    Steinbeck wrote an excellent short novel about just this kind of resistance in WWII titled “The Moon is Down”.

  64. birgerjohansson says

    Logistics: wormholes and gates.

    And the poverty of North Korea is just a cunning long-term ruse. Underneath the crude rural villages are an underground maze of factory caverns powered by laser fusion poweplants…

  65. bradleybetts says

    “…while the rest of us pickup-driving, gun-toting, Bible-believing, red-blooded Americans can actually relate.”

    How is Drew’s Big List o’ Stereotypes not insulting to every single American out there? If an Englsh journalist referred to “tea-sipping, beer-swigging, football-loving, red-blooded Englishmen” I would be overcome with the desire to pin them up against the wall and patiently explain that not every Englishman drinks tea and beer and loves football, and that the notion that any of them might not be red blooded is preposterous; whilst slapping them repeatedly around the face.

  66. says

    And the poverty of North Korea is just a cunning long-term ruse…

    A famous high-profile defector, Anatoly Golytsin, said exactly that about the disollusion of the USSR: the whole thing was just a ruse to get more hard currency from the West. Not sure if he actually believed it, or was just trying to get attention and keep up the pretense of relevance.

    And I’m sure there are plenty of American survivalists and survivalist wannabees who really believe that sort of nonsense. They could well be the same people who believe poor people are living in luxury while the rich are oppressed. That’s what a steady diet of racism, exceptionalism, stupid action-hero movies, and infantile demagoguery does to one’s brain.

  67. dingojack says

    Ichthyic – see also ‘Nuisance Value’ by Eric Frank Russell (Astounding Stories, vol. LVIII, No.5, Jan. 1957).
    Dingo

  68. DaveL says

    In the scenario that Mr. DaveL is describing, the US military takes active steps to prevent any use of the roads through Northern BC, which the French did not do in the Ardennes in 1940.

    Well, yes, any territory is passable if it isn’t defended. We can land hardware on Mars, after all. However, if Alaska were actually to be invaded and occupied, I think a total lack of U.S. and Canadian response would be, to put it lightly, unlikely in the extreme.

  69. stace says

    West Nutsack, TN

    LOL, didn’t Tina Turner sing about that place once? Oh wait, that was Nutbush, Tennessee.

  70. valhar2000 says

    The remake originally had the Chinese as the bad guys invading America, but in post-production they decided this wasn’t a good idea because China is an important market for movies and that might prevent it from being shown there.

    The exact same thing happened with the video-game “Crysis”. As it happens, the game has the saving grace that it is exceptionally well made and fun to play, but that particular premise remains unspeakably ridiculous.

  71. says

    Stace:

    East Nutsack used to lie across the river from West Nutsack, until that day when the residents of the town took to heart the sentiment expressed in that long forgotten scrap of a Dead Sea Scrotum (it was actually written on a foreskin, true story!) which I referenced in the thread about Gay Rights (@47) just above this post. On that day the entire male population self-castrated* and, like the Shakers, passed into history without no begettin’.

    * Records do not indicate whether there might have been a “Great Smoky Mountains ‘All you can eat!’ Oyster Fry”

  72. khms says

    A lot of these people, and I had a “friend” (not a friend) who was one of them, strongly believe or at least are quick to say and passionate in doing so, that they would do what the Wolverines did in the film and fight invaders with their measly assault and battle rifles and pistols and go all survivalist and the like and go down fighting even if it was a losing proposition. To them the Wolverines, and real life, especially romanticized Revolutionary War counterparts are role models. They want glory; they want to kill the “bad guys”; and they want to be remembered as patriots and heroes which is as the Wolverines are remembered as being in the film.

    If you think about it, that’s rather similar to the beliefs of, for example, many Islamic terrorists. Or, for that matter, many people in historic societies.

    something primal and patriotic, two instincts

    If we assume this person can at least count to two (maybe a little optimistic), we have to conclude that they see these two instincts:

    1. primal
    2. patriotic

    As for the first one, all I can say is WTF?

    As for the second, I’ll just point out that patriotism was pretty much invented in the 18th century; that should prove conclusively that it can’t be an instinct, whose age tends to be more in the millions-of-years range, it seems.

  73. Canadian Yankee says

    That’s only true if you don’t count Alaska as part of America. Alaska was invaded by the Japanese in 1942 and they stayed longer than the British did in 1812.

    While it’s true that the Japanese captured some of the Aleutian Islands, it’s not true that they stayed longer than the British did during the War of 1812. Kiska was occupied in June of 1942 and recaptured 14 months later in August 1943. Mackinac Island (in Michigan) was captured by the British in June 1812, withstood a couple of attempts by the Americans to retake it, and was only returned to American control three year later, with the signing of the Treaty of Ghent and the end of the war in 1815.

  74. jannaroam says

    You make some good points about how bad the Red Dawn remake is even though you haven’t seen the movie. I’ll take it off my list of movies to watch. I’m curious about the original though, and I think I’ll check it out sometime this week. It’s available from DISH Online, which has thousands of movies that will stream to my computer, so I’ll be able to watch it whenever it’s convenient for me. That will be helpful since I work odd hours at DISH and have a hard time catching whole movies on TV. It sounds like the original is more relevant in terms of the Cold War than the remake too, so I’m sure I’ll enjoy it.

  75. Stu says

    If the US high command had made the same assumption that the French high command made in 1940 relative to the feasibility of armored forces pushing through British Columbia and deployed their forces elsewhere, the Russian advance would have been in Southern BC before the US could redeploy to oppose the advance.

    Holy tapdancing Jeebus slc, you never fail to make a fool of yourself.

    - POTUS hears about armored forces invading BC from Canadian authorities.
    - POTUS finishes his coffee, reaches for the football and makes a call.
    - A squadron of B-2 bombers takes off from Whitman, loaded with a few B83s each.
    - Every major OPFOR BC-based fuel dump, rallying point, bridge capable of carrying MBTs, and oh, just for giggles, the port of Vladivostok and Pyongyang are turned into parking lots.

    Total elapsed time: 10 hours. Well, 20 if you count Pyongyang I guess. “Redeploy to oppose”? You’re pathetic. Who do you think you are fooling with this weak-sauce 19-farking-40s Ardennes tripe?

    Hey wait, aren’t you the bigoted clown that keeps advocating for nuking Iran? Good dog, how do you keep the cognitive dissonance from exploding your head?

    Also, could we get an IP check for sock puppetry? Seems like Mr slc’s Mr’ing is contagious.

    Ahem.

  76. tigeroid63 says

    Newsflash brayton, They redubbed chinese dialogue into korean, and at least one of the actors will yun lee(captain cho) is ethnically korean. If you were paying attention, you’d of known that.Your attempt to smear this film as racist is dishonest and disgusting. Your dismissal of the threat from north korea is why 9/11 happened. We underestimated the islamic fascists and they attacked us. By the way north korea has the world’s 4th largest military. America does not love war and does not invent enemies to fight against. The vietnamese, grenadans, and saddam were a threat not to mention that they killed and opressed .countless members of their own people as well as foreigners. It’s obvious that you like most leftists hate america, consider america to be the reincarnation of nazi germany, and consider celebrating america and it’s freedom a crime. Ilove red dawn and the only dumbass is you, hating on those who don’t share your views. I’m an atheist conservative by the way.

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