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** The Hunt For Red October **
I couldn't resist buying this classic early 1990s cold war action film for my DVD collection. I'd long ago read the Tom Clancy novel and went to the flicks to see the Sean Connery/Alec Balwin film version.
I won't spoil the plot as it is too good to have ruined if you haven't seen the film. But as a general background that won't give anything away. Sean Connery plays the Russian commander of a brand new cutting edge technology nuclear submarine. He is a brilliant commander but there is more to him that meets the eye and the atmosphere on board the sub is electric. Not even the crew know what is going on.
Alec Baldwin plays a naval historian employed by the CIA who is brought in by the Americans to work out what is happening.
Is Sean Connery's character Ramius about to wage war on the West? Is he defecting? Does he have other plans? Are Alec and Sean friewnds or foes? Are there other players in the game? Is the new design sub really a threat to peace?
The plot is breathtaking the anticipation is sweaty palm good. The action scenes though sparse are clever and exciting. The story twists will leave you guessing and then re-guessing right to the end, and it is a positive definite ending too that resolves well with no ambiguity.
** In conclusion **
Hunt for Red October is a classic film. If you are unfamiliar with the story you are in for an amazing treat. If you have seen it before then just sit back and enjoy all the bits you forgot first time around :o)
I paid £3.85 for Red October at Amazon and the price included free super saver delivery.
Thanks for reading this review.
FILM ONLY REVIEW
Red October is a new submarine which the Soviet Union have developed to carry nuclear weapons and travel around undetected. It is out on its test run where it is being run by Captain Marko Ramius. The American government has got hold of photos of this new sub and they are getting worried so ask Professor Jack Ryan to have a look and give an analysis of the sub.
Captain Ramius has followed his orders and is now awaiting the Political Officers arrival so they can open their orders and find out their mission. When the orders are opened it is discovered that they are to play war games with the rest of the Soviet Unions fleet in the ocean but Ramius has other ideas and after killing the Political Officer he sets his own course and orders with the crew setting off for the coast of America. Before setting off though Ramius sent a letter to the Soviets Government outlining his plans.
Soon we have the Americans and the Soviet Union all trying to track Ramius as they both have different theories as to what his plans are, the Soviet believe he is going to try and start a nuclear war but after long discussions with Jack Ryan the Americas are lead to believe Ramius is trying to defect and join them with the Red October.
What are Ramius' plans and will we have Nuclear War or will Ramius in fact defect. Most of all though will the Navy's be able to find the Red October?
I though this film really would not be to my liking as I am not really a fan of Sean Connery and the subject matter did not interest me in any way. To make matters worse I had to spend the first 15 minutes of the film reading the subtitles on the screen as it was all in Russian. Things did improve for me when the Russians started speaking English as it made it much easier to follow and understand and after this I did actually start to really get into the film and somewhat enjoy it. The storyline was good and I has informed by hubby that this film is based on true events but I cannot comment on how accurate his claim is. I though it worked well and was put across in an easy to follow way.
Sean Connery did a good job in the role of Ramius, he was quite believable in his uniform and did suit it. I found he was good at the start of the film when he was speaking Russian but when it came to switching to speaking English he suddenly got his Scottish accent back and for a few minutes it was quite off putting and did at times make me forget that he was supposed to be Russian, I soon got over this though and got to know more about his character and his background and I found this information did help me understand why he was doing what he was. He worked well as the leader and there was a good partnership between him and all of his co stars. He seemed to suit the role with the authority and looked comfortable giving out orders.
There were a lot of supporting actors on the Russian side and they all gave good performance which looked very real. The other lead for me was definitely Alec Baldwin who played the role of Jack Ryan, he did a super job and found it very easy to warm to his character. I liked how we also learned about his history as this gave me a much clearer understanding as to why the high ranking Navy and Government people believed what he was saying. He worked well with all of the American co-stars and they too gave good performance.
For me the special effects in the film were at times good, the missiles and submarines when we got to see the outsides of them in the water looked very real but then we would move to a scene with one of the stars on top of a sub when it was above water and the backdrop looked awful. I think this film would have benefited from a more consistent set of special effects and may be more time and effort on them. The music was good and for the first 30 minutes of the film it was all very Russian sounding, we did then change slightly to more neutral music and this is when it all just started to blend into the background and I could not remember any of the later tracks which were played.
The film was made in 1990 and this is very apparent from the uniforms the people wore right down to the equipment on the subs and the clothes the civilians wore. I think that this does date the film slightly but not as much as the poor effect do.
The running time of this film is 134 minutes and for me I did find this to be quite long, I think it may have benefited from about 20 minutes being removed as I don't think we would have lost any of the main points to the story if they would have done this and it would not have dragged it out for so long. The certificate is a PG and I do agree with this.
Overall I will recommend this film as it did actually surprise me. The storyline is good and if what hubby says about it being true then this makes it even better viewing and the acting is great by all. This is definitely one for fans of war films and of Sean Connery as he did actually give a super performance.
It's when you travel back through time, to a point where the world was polarized and on the brink of atomic warfare that you get an engrossing tale of two equally matched sides and nuclear brinkmanship. Sometimes I really do miss the cold war and the Soviet Union. You also got a movie with a strong cast and excellent performances. I am of course talking about The Hunt For Red October.
Jack Ryan is a CIA analyst who, whilst in London is examining some photographs obtained by British intelligence. They show a new Russian submarine under construction with some unusual design properties. Ryan's concern prompts him to take a flight to the States where he consults with an engineer.
He learns that the new design could mean a working caterpillar drive, a magneto-hydrodynamic propulsion system with no moving parts and to all intents and purposes, silent. When he realises that this would mean the Russians would be able to park nuclear warheads of the US coast with absolutely no warning, he moves to inform his superiors.
However, events are moving far faster than he can anticipate. The Red October has already set sail, and unbeknownst to the Americans the Captain, a Lithuanian named Marko Ramius has declared his intention to the Kremlin to defect. The Soviet Navy scrambles its fleet in an attempt to destroy the Red October but when it becomes apparent that they will not catch Red October in time, Russian diplomats inform the Americans that Ramius is a renegade intent on attacking the United States and request their assistance in destroying the submarine.
Meanwhile Ryan has intuited Ramius' true intentions and seeing the opportunity to maintain the balance of power by stealing the Russian sub, argues with his superiors for the chance to aid Ramius in his defection. The military representatives are sceptical, but a politician, Jeffrey Pelt is willing to take the chance. Of course it's up to Ryan to go out into the Atlantic and make contact with Ramius. It's a race against time to obtain the secrets of the Red October.
The Hunt for Red October is presented in an anamorphic 2.35:1 ratio. The image is less than stellar, with grain constant throughout. Since it didn't vary it was easy to put it to the back of my mind and enjoy the film. The image was a little soft and the colours were muted. Blacks weren't adequately represented, fading to grey at points. The nighttime landing sequence on the carrier was severely plagued by this. Flecks of dirt and dust marred the beginning of the film, but this quickly faded away to imperceptibility. This litany of problems sound fatal, but they really are marginal faults.
Made in 1989, it was cutting edge in special effects. The underwater sequences seem false. Visibility is constant no matter the depth, and the sea consists of very blue water and rocks. The sub battle sequences are very well choreographed though and thrilling to watch. John McTiernan directs well and the film is well paced from beginning to end with the tension palpable throughout.
The moment I heard the song of a humpback whale echoing around my speakers, I realised the sound was a particular treat on this disc. The sound is very well implemented on the 5.1 English track. The powerful bass rumble of the submarines is tangible, and the explosions are powerfully represented.
Basil Poledouris' music is well written and you feel the communism oozing out of your speakers. I love the way the change from Russian to English is accomplished. The less said about Sean Connery's Russian accent the better.
The features on this disc consist of a theatrical trailer and subtitles in a whole slew of languages
Submarine movies are cool. Cold War thrillers are cool too. The Hunt For Red October is the best of both worlds. The Hunt For Red October shows them all how it's done.
The cast is brilliant. It hardly bears mentioning Sean Connery's performance. If you forgive the pun, he is commanding as the Russian Captain Marko Ramius. He gives a measured and authoritative performance, which is the reason this movie works. Jack Ryan is strictly a secondary character in this story, but Alec Baldwin gives a singular performance as the CIA analyst. His Ryan is a more complex character. Unsure of himself, he finds himself thrown into the deep end hunting for the Russian submarine. He is nervous about flying and not exactly in control of events. His reaction is priceless when he finally meets the Russian commander he idolises, and Ramius belittles his achievements.
Solid performances by Scott Glen as Bart Mancuso, Sam Neill as Borodin, Joss Ackland as Ambassador Lysenko all add to the stellar cast. I particularly like Richard Jordan's delicious performance as the politician Jeffrey Pelt. The only blemish is Tim Curry's role as Dr. Petrov, which is weak compared to the rest of the cast.
This is an excellent film, thrilling from beginning to end. The claustrophobic tension of submarine combat is recreated well here. Great performances, a genuinely exciting story and some memorable battle scenes all make for an unmissable film.
I saw this again a few days ago on TV and I'm reviewing that. Gates McFadden from Star Trek: The Next Generation was in this very briefly. I'd never noticed her before playing Ryan's wife.
I also hardly recognized a very young looking Sam Neill who everyone ends up wishing that he had seen Montana. Tim Curry looks very weird and quite young himself. Connery plays a Sub Captain who has recently lost his wife and was the trainer for all the Soviet sub fleet Captains. He is given the job of taking the newest addition to the Soviet Fleet, The Red October. It has a prototype caterpillar drive that is totally silent.
He is wanting to defect. He kills the ships KGB officer & never tells the crew apart from his carefully chosen senior officers that he intends to defect. James Earl Jones plays a senior CIA officer who was "never there & never did anything". The ship is guided by Jack Ryan & the Captain of the Dallas Submarine. This is an excellent film with good twists & the "destruction" scene is brilliant.
Off the back of directing Predator and Die Hard, John McTiernan took the helm for this adaptation of Tom Clancy's novel by the same name. The Hunt For Red October was the first film featuring Clancy's hero Jack Ryan, and it was successful enough that it resulted in Ryan being the hero in 3 further adaptations to date.
Clancy's plots have a habit of being intrinsic and very detailed in terms of political strategy as well as action, so for the movie the politics had to be toned down a bit to give us the film in a decent timeframe. No matter how good something is, if you want to make a good film out of it, it would be hard to please a public with a film over 4 hours long! As such, the plot is toned down from the book. The Red October is the latest in Soviet technology at the height of the Cold War, as it features the 'caterpillar drive', which enables it to escape radar by displacing water instead of air. The Red October is heading for the US, with its captain, Marko Ramius (Sean Connery) wishing to defect. The Soviets launch into the water to avert him defecting with their latest technology, and all the Americans see is an undetectable sub heading into the water, immediately followed by the Soviet fleet!
As panic sets in on both sides and a political struggles to make clarity on the surface, the sub heads closer to the States, and only Jack Ryan can see clearly. He firmly believes the captain is defecting, although they have no proof of this. Ryan has only a short time to prove it before the outbreak of nuclear war becomes distinctly possible!
McTiernan does very well in giving us a brilliantly tense film without confusing us. Those up on their Cold War history will understand this a bit better, but even for those who have never heard of it, it is clearly explained that the US and the Soviets are at a stalemate, both primed for nuclear war, and that there is an undetectable sub in the water somewhere between the two and no one what it is doing! We, as the audience, are made aware of what is going on, and so we are on the edge of our seats as we can but sit and wait to find out.
And that is what is so good - the fact that we are made to feel how real this is. Numerous times during the Cold War, nuclear outbreaks were on the cards, and it was only just last minute events that halted the proceedings. You need only to watch films such as 13 Days with Kevin Costner, and K-19 The Widowmaker with Harrison Ford, both of whoich are based on true stories, to realise how close it was. Red October seizes the opportunity to planbt a fictional scenario in our minds, but makes it all the more feasible given the political sensitivity around at the time of its release, just after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War.
The cast are also excellent in this film. Sean Connery is solid as Ramius, and is extremely convincing as a defector. Alec Baldwin is equally good as Jack Ryan, and it is only due to other filming commitments that he was unable to repeat the role in Patriot Games, and the role was handed over to Harrison Ford. There is a stellar cast behind them, with Scott Glenn, Sam Neill and James Earl Jones all on top form. There are also good performances from an impressive lineup including Tim Curry, Stellan Skaarsgard and Joss Ackland.
I'm giving this film 5 stars. It was captivated from start to finish, and have watched it a number of times now. It is the best of the four films featuring Jack Ryan to date, by far, and I imagine it will stay this way for a long time. McTiernan and the cast were all on top form for this film, and it will be a hard one for anyone to beat.
We Sail Into History
Most people will associate the character of Jack Ryan with Harrison Ford, as he has played him in two highly successful films. However, the first outing in a movie for Jack Ryan was played by the excellent Alec Baldwin.
Jack Ryan is an American intelligence agent. He lives in London with his wife and child. He is given cause for concern when a Russian nuclear submarine goes missing without warning and decided to travel back to America where he is briefed by his boss played by James Earl Jones. He tracks down a Navy submarine expert who concludes from a picture of the sub that it has a new silent propulsion device that makes it undetectable, and potentially a lethal weapon.
The Captain of the sub is a soviet veteran commander with the name Marko Ramius, played with great gusto by Sean Connery (with a fine hair piece). Along with other senior members of his crew he defies his orders and sets sail for America, telling the crew that they are to attack.
What are his true motives however? Ryan has a hunch and persuades his superiors to give him a chance but he only has so long to prove he is right. In the mean times the American and Russian Navies find themselves in a massive search
for the renegade sub. During the film the motives become clear but will they evade the mighty American and Russian navies? . To make matters worse there seems to be a saboteur amongst the crew. The Americans would also love a good look at the silent propulsion system (or caterpillar drive) they have developed, but of course how do you find and capture a sub that is totally undetectable? All will be revealed.
There are three special features on the disc, although one is just a theatrical trailer (always relatively pointless in my opinion).
There is a commentary by the director. In parts this can be quite interesting and enlightening, but on the whole is pretty dull.
The final special feature is a 28 minute featurette called "Beneath The Surface". This is a well put together look into the making of the film. It shows behind the scenes footage and interviews with the cast and crew. It is very enjoyable and informative.
The writer of the book this film is based on, Tom Clancy, is a busy man. When he's not writing books, he's writing computer games. I am a big fan of his work. This is one of my all time favourite films, and definitely my favourite of the Jack Ryan films. There is an excellent supporting cast, Sam Neil and Tim Curry (who often plays a bad man, is he this time?). James Earl Jones with his velvet voice always makes a welcome (if short in this case) appearance.
This is director John McTiernan's best work to date, his previous form has been Die Hard and Predator, he's definitely known for action packed movies.
Here there are surprises, tension and lots of action involved in what could be seen as a thinking mans movie. The special effects are very good, you never think you're looking at a model submarine or digital effects. The soundtrack is pretty standard fare but supports the films well without being obtrusive. This ranks very highly in my DVD collection.
Main Cast List
Alec Baldwin Jack Ryan
Sean Connery Captain Marko Ramius
Scott Glenn Commander Bart Mancuso
Sam Neill Captain 2nd Rank Vasily Borodin
James Earl Jones Admiral James Greer
Joss Ackland Ambassador Andrei Lysenko
Directed By John McTiernan
Feature Running Time : 134 Minutes
Certificate : PG
If you like this film, others I would recommend are Crimson Tide and Das Boot, but definitely not U-571.
Where To Buy
At the time of writing the cheapest price I could find is £4.99 from the online retailer BlahDVD.com. That's a bargain.
The plot: Captain Marko Ramius has run off with the pride of the Soviet fleet, the submarine Red October. The Americans think he's going to launch World War III, the Russians want to wipe him out, but CIA analyst Jack Ryan thinks Ramius is trying to defect... Main actors: Sean Connery - Marko Ramius Alec Baldwin - Jack Ryan Scott Glenn - Bart Mancuso Sam Neill - Captain Vasily Borodin James Earl Jones - Admiral James Greer Joss Ackland - Ambassador Andrei Lysenko Analysis: I'm beginning to think I'm slightly strange for being a submarine film junkie. I've watched pretty much anything involving them and even know what they mean by 'COB' and 'down bubble'. 'The Hunt for Red October' has always been one of my favourites, partly since it was the first one I saw which started off my love affair with the sub-genre. Connery is dependable as ever as Ramius, who, thanks to Connery is the most human character in the whole film. However, his Russian accent is about as believable as his Irish one in 'The Untouchables'. Baldwin is decent enough as Ryan although he would have benefitted from his personality being rounded out a little - something that goes for almost all the characters in the film. But since this is an action-driven film, I guess we shouldn't expect too much of that. As ever with a film based on a Tom Clancy novel, the technical and military aspects are impeccably done. However, the jargon and technobabble can get a bit confusing for the outsider, which means a lot of nuances can get lost on the first viewing. The effects? Well, they're alright by 1990 standards meaning that they only just stay this side of believable. But they are more than compensated by the tension which gradually increases to almost fever pitch - even now I end up sweating as another torpedo heads torwards the Red October. McT
iernan's direction is never less than completely assured - as it should be for someone who had just directed 'Die Hard'. Its main weakness is its length - at 2 and a quarter hours my behind begins to get a little sore and my attention begins to wander. A lot of the novel's backstory was sensibly cut but I think even more could have been dumped to concentrate on the action. That said, it's still a good, solid thriller movie to settle down to of an evening. Be prepared for a good sweating. Dive dive dive!
Considering the credentials which this movie has there should be no suprise that it delivers the goods with seemingly consumate ease. Director John McTiernan already had two of the greatest action movies of the 80s under his belt(Die Hard and Predator...ok one great, and one fun) so when he was signed up to direct the movie adapatation of Tom Clancy's Cold War thriller 'The Hunt For Red October' you couldn't help but get a little excited...if you like this kind of thing. When you heard the cast list as well which includes not only great names in the major roles but all through the lineup it looked like you were in for a real treat..and you were right..if you like this kind of thing of course. ;o) Tom Clancy's novels never translate that well to the silver screen. There is the kind of attention to detail in his novels which readers delight in and directors balk at in fear of losing their audience. Clancy's tightly knit, complex stories focus as more upon the politics and strategies of warfare than the action itself(although that's there too) which is not the standard Hollywood fare so they replace it with the formula action scenes, girl/guy romance thing and all that other formulaic stuff which most of us are surely bored to death with by now. Clancy himself has complained on numerous occassions that his work is not being translated in the way which he himself would like to see - that it is being watered down and slashed about in order to make the average punter an average happy punter and anyone who has even had a sniff at the book before watching this movie(or any of his others) will see exactly what he means. Still...McTiernan is a director of some quality and with a cast including the likes of Sean Connery, Alec Baldwin, James Earl Jones, Sam Neil, Peter Firth...and so on, you know you its not going to be that bad...or in fact, that its going to be pretty damn good! As it happens, The Hunt For Red October is good, bu
t with a few minor gripes which may put off a few viewers - it certainly caused a fair few critics to grumble at the time(nothing new though). To simplify a complicated plot the Red October is a Russian submarine which is worrying the US officials somewhat. You see, the Red October is no ordinary submarine but is instead the very latest Russian weapon of war which includes a new technology known as the 'caterpillar drive' which makes it effectively invisible to radar. The drive pushes water instead of air for propulsion so the Red October doesn't show up at all on conventional radar...effectively meaning that it could sit lazily off the coast of America without detection and launch a barrage of unstoppable nuclear missiles at the mainland. It has also not gone without notice that the entire Russian fleet put to sea just after the Red October itself did...America in its Cold War days fears an attack and tries to hunt the Red October down. However, thats not all, because military bloke Jack Ryan has a theory that the Russian captain may very well be seeking to defect to the US and turn over his craft in the bargain, that the fleet is chasing the Red October rather than backing it up in an attack but he has to prove this, and he only has days to do so before the US launches a counter-strike. Indeed Russian sub commander Marko Ramius does intend to defect along with some of his other officers and a tense story develops from there as a number of factors need to be resolved before this is possible. Ramos has the problem of a dissenting crew, staying silent and hidden from the entire Russian fleet whilst trying to alert the Americans of his intention to defect(so don't blow him up!) and the tense military politics playing out on the surface is more than a little intriguing. Great stuff. Criticisms then first, I did say there were some. Tom Clancy's novels are rather slow to unfold, with big build ups and complex characters being inter
weaved into even more complex plots against a backdrop of political and military protocol. Translating this to the silver screen is...well difficult and McTiernan opts to basically dump a lot of it. What he does keep is built up slowly in scenes which often seem to drag on well past their sell by date and add enormously to the length of the movie. Some of you reading this are going to find the first hour crushingly dull as many professional critics did at the time of its release. All this does go to build up and explain the plot...but it just seems, rather bloated shall we say. Another 'criticism' is hardly a criticism at all but a warning. You may look at the credentials of the director and think tis is going to be another action packed blockbuster in the same vein as a Die hard, or a Predator and if you come in with that thought you are going to be bored silly by it all. There are are few underwater action scenes, mainly tense cat and mouse games but a little open warfare as well to keep your interest but this is more of a thinking man's thriller than a piece of numbskullish(all be it excellent) entertainment that the likes Die Hard gave us. It seems almost pointless to talk of acting, scripting, direction etc. when you have quality such as this behind it all. Rest assured it is all nothing short of excellent. McTiernan managed to instill more than enough in the way of intrigue to hold your interest throughout and the underwater scenes are nailbitingly tense as they should be. Despite the fact that you riccochet around the various locations Russian sub, US sub, Whitehouse, Kremlin, surface fleet etc.you never end up 'lost' as is easy to do in movies like this thanks to some expert scripting from Larry Ferguson despite things getting a little complicated at times...which is also true of the underwater battles where it is always difficult to lose who are the good guys and who are the bad guys...a sub, is a sub, is a sub, is a...well you
get the picture, its often very easy to lose the plot here and The Hunt For Red October sidesteps the problem rather well. Acting is first rate, there really is no point stepping through the cast unless you really want to read excellent 20 times(not too sure about Connery's accent if you REALLY want a criticism), and the rousing classical musical score which often features a Russian male voice choir is used to excellent affect in accompanying and enhancing the scenes. Obviously this kind of thing isn't going to be to everyone's taste so forgive me if I eulogise on the subject and you watch it and thinks its pants. If you are into light and airy movies, with little substance, or are expecting an all out action thriller then you basically aren't going to like it. If however you like a movie with a little bit of brain about it, a large helping of tension and some great actors and performances then you are in for a treat...and that treat begins in about 8 hours time on terrestrial television too, so thats your Thursday evening sorted. :o) ~Additional Info~ Director: John McTiernan Screenplay: Larry Ferguson, (Tom Clancy) Cast: Sean Connery - Captain Marko Ramius Alec Baldwin- Jack Ryan Scott Glenn - Commander Bart Mancuso Sam Neill - Captain Vasily Borodin James Earl Jones - Admiral James Greer Joss Ackland - Ambassador Lysenko Peter Firth - P.O. Ivan Putin Tim Curry - Dr. Petrov Stellan Skarsgård - Captain Tupolev ... .. . Visit here to see the rest: http://us.imdb.com/Credits?0099810
This is a really excellent film. The story is based around a Russian submarine commander (Sean Connery) who realises that the new submarine (Red October) that he has taken charge of could lead to the start of World War 3. The submarine has a new propulsion system that makes it almost silent and therefore capable of initiating a first strike against America without detection. The Russian commander, Captain Ramius, devises an elaborate plan to take the submarine to the United States and hand it over, together with all the sub’s officers who all plan to ask for asylum in the USA. The plan is dependent upon the American forces realising what he is doing and acting accordingly. A young CIA research worker (Ryan) has met Captain Ramius and believes he understands the plan and persuades the American commanders to give the Russian a chance, rather than blow up the submarine. As the plot develops there are some exceptional underwater shots and the tension is maintained throughout the story. As you watch the film you can appreciate the vulnerability of a submarine, whilst at the same time realising the potential awesome power that it’s weapons have. This is a film well worth watching.
Well it doesn't take a genius to work out what this films all about.... Sean Connery is in charge of the Red October and he goes AWOL. He is heading for the US to defect it seems but some are a little concerned it's to goto war. The film is really good, and great performances by Connery and Washington throughout are to be enjoyed. The film has alot of twists and turns and never bores you to stop watching. The production is good even though most of it is based in a small room underwater.... If the book is good then the film translation is most likely one that Tom Clancy is happy with. Definitely worth seeing.
Sean Connery, as a Russian Sub' commander, in his best post-Bond role to date ('The Rock' comes close), assisted in his central charactor by excellent performances by Sam Neill and Alec Baldwin. Set towards the end of the Cold War the the USSR, the film follows a new and deadly attack submarine designed with only one purpose in mind - first strike with nuclear warheads, and the commander, Connery, steals the boat with the assistance of some of his officers. You would expect this film to have dated - NO WAY, I watched it again on video the other night, and it's action and drama is still fresh and sintilating to watch. Get sucked into the well thoughtout plot, and emerge 130 minutes later VERY entertained. Hunt down the Hunt for Red October!
Before Harrison Ford assumed the mantle of playing Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan hero in Patriot Games, Alec Baldwin took a swing at the character in this John McTiernan film and hit one to the fence. If less instantly sympathetic than Ford, Baldwin is in some respects more interesting and nuanced as Ryan, and drawing comparisons between both actors' performances can make for some interesting post-movie discussion. That aside, The Hunt for Red October stands alone as a uniquely exciting adventure with a fantastic co-star: Sean Connery as a Russian nuclear submarine captain attempting to defect to the West on his ship. Ryan must figure out his true motives for approaching the US. McTiernan (Predator, Die Hard) made an exceptionally handsome movie here with action sequences that really do take one's breath away. --Tom Keogh