Friday, November 23, 2012

The Red Dawn Remake

"We're living Call of Duty and it sucks."  --Robert

As a courtesy to you, the reader, SPOILER ALERT!  Now don’t go whining that I didn’t warn you.

This lovely little rant deals with the remake of Red Dawn.  Overall I enjoyed the film because I’m pretty easy to entertain and I also walked into the theater with low expectations.  Let me explain the main issue I had which tantalized me throughout the entire movie…

The flag of Occupied America in the new Red Dawn
By the looks of the trailer, it’s a large Asian army invading Main Street USA.  If you took a glance at their combat uniforms like I did, the pattern looks a hell of a lot like Chinese PLA (People’s Liberation Army).  The Chinese communist army invading the United States???  That’s actually pretty plausible and would make for an awesome movie.

The Chinese regular army is a hell of a lot bigger than the US Army, and unlike the latter, the PLA isn’t spread thin with global-wide garrisons.  Even though it would never last more than a decade, a Chinese invasion and occupation of the American mainland is fairly possible.  Given the rising U.S. national debt (and the share of it owned by the Chinese) plus the total inability at this time to pay it back, the growing likelihood of such an invasion is less far-fetched than it was during the Cold War.

I could truly appreciate this scenario for a new Red Dawn.  Hell, this might have even been a better scenario than that in the 1984 original where the Soviet Army invades.  There was the good scenario for the remake, and then there’s what actually happened with this movie and in this movie…

Apparently during post-production MGM decided they didn’t want to hurt China’s feelings and lose all the distribution rights, so the movie was digitally altered in post-production to make the invading army North Korean.

Go ahead and re-read that last sentence and give it a moment to sink in.  No, that wasn’t a typo; MGM really rolled with that terrible idea.  Now before all you diehard neoconservative nationalists and anarcho-capitalist libertarians start picking my gripe apart, I will concede that the Korean People’s Army has over one million regulars, plus another 4 or 5 million reserves and militia and blah-blah-blah.  The problem is, there’s the on-paper KPA strength and then the number that are actually deployable.

To quote the great Congressman Ron Paul, “They have no gasoline!”

So basically, all 47 deployable North Koreans are invading the Pacific Northwest and their secret weapon is Dumbledore’s clicker that shuts the lights off.  Gotcha….  But lame as lameness goes, like the Atlas Shrugged movies, I got myself all kinds of excited over this movie, so it was my moral obligation to go see it.

There were three redeeming factors in the film (other than my willingness to date Adrianne Palicki and Isabel Lucas, at the same time if possible).  The new Red Dawn is a great venue for speculating on the Second Amendment in action.  Remember folks, the Second Amendment (the right of citizens to own firearms) wasn’t designed for hunting or protecting the household against bandits…  The Second Amendment was specifically written up to give the citizenry (the unorganized militia) a fighting chance at opposing a large army should there ever be an army inflicting tyranny on the population.

Chinese PLA without the North Korean flag superimposed on them
An invading army would certainly be an example of inflicting tyranny on the citizenry, and also the ideal target for the wrath of the unorganized militia using their Second Amendment power in concert.  However, it was drawn up by justifiably paranoid statesmen who had survived the Revolutionary War and knew that their own country’s standing army could easily become a force for tyranny.  The common practice of citizens owning firearms (and willingness to use them) is what ultimately enabled the Colonial rebels to defeat Great Britain in our war of independence.  If any foreign army ever invaded the USA, they can sure bet there would be a rifle waiting for them behind every blade of grass.

The second redeeming factor is the first ambush/firefight.  That was pretty believable, up to the point where the tech nerd starts outrunning the .50 cal fire.  As far as lying in wait, popping out of the ground, and taking advantage of the chaos to run around and shoot, that’s pretty believable.  The third factor is the end scene.  Even though it reeks of cheesiness, the shot of the prisoners bearing the American flag while making a break for it was a badass image.

Before I bring this rant to a close I must declare: Republicans, if you even try to make the case that a hypothetical invasion of our homeland is Obama and the Democrats’ fault, I will have to throw things at you.  Seriously, that’s like using the movie Captain America to justify an invasion of Iran.

And one last thing: yes, libertarians, there’s a glaring contradiction between the nationalistic-defensive theme of this movie and America’s aggressive foreign policy.  I get it.  Save the speech for the neoconservatives at the local Republican club rather than ranting to all your libertarian friends on Facebook (i.e., preaching to the choir).


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Occupied America flag image by "Woodmath" and used via CC BY 3.0 license.
PLA image by the Department of Defense and is in the public domain.
Both images were obtained from Wikimedia Commons.

Gosh, I feel incredibly silly, I tell ya. Not only did I see the midnight release of this movie but I also took my nephews to see it yesterday night.  At least I was a good uncle and used the movie as an opportunity to lecture the boys about the Second Amendment.  Leave it to Uncle Zach to kill fun by making it educational!

1 comment:

  1. At least you didn't make them hand write the 1st Amendment 5 times for saying the "F" word. Not an easy task for a 3rd grader. Yeah, I've done that. And I get the irony.

    Great post, Zach! So glad you could share the midnight showing with us and that you loved it enough to see it a 2nd time! WOLVERINES!