Red Dawn


“Red Dawn”


Review by Justin T. Bowler

As I sat down in the theater at 10:40am, I was excited to see the re-creation of one of my favorite childhood movies. When I heard they were remaking “Red Dawn” five years ago, I was ecstatic. It was a cult favorite of so many children of the 80s. Now, to remake it without the wink and a nudge factor, and as a serious kick ass movie, with Chris Hemsworth and Adrianne Palicki, I couldn’t be happier. (Unfortunately, over the past five years, it has had a few problems: reshoots, altered sequences, and finally the studio had permanently shelved it. That was until Chris Hemsworth became the God of Thunder and Adrianne Palicki became Princess Diana from the Island of the Amazon Women.) Now it was in theatres and I was happy to see it. Plus, when one of my fellow Movie Guys told me he wanted to go with me to the KROQ Kevin & Bean Miss Double December Pageant on the same day, I couldn’t resist. So, while excitedly waiting for “Red Dawn” to begin, I reminisced about the electric morning I had enjoyed leading up to this moment.

Miss Double December PageantIn true “Red Dawn” military style, my day began at 4:30 in the morning (Just in case you didn’t know this, the sun is not up at that point.) It was a cold and wet morning outside the Slide Bar in Fullerton, CA (Apparently this event was so popular that I had to be there an hour before go time.) While I was waiting in line, several hopeful contestants passed by as they wandered backstage to get ready. (They were easy to spot for two reasons. First, they were the only females at the entire event. (Or within ten miles for that matter.) Second, they all had ENORMOUS breasts.) (In writing this, I’m not objectifying these women. I’m just confirming their eligibility to compete in this particular pageant.) Once we got in, I, and my fellow Movie Guys, needed to relax (due to the laborious line waiting). So, we got double shots of Kettle One, a bloody mary, and a screwdriver. By this time, the show was ready to start.

Popping back to the present, I was in the theater, and I realized I had been so lost in thought that I had apparently missed the opening scene. The opening credits had begun to play. Splatters of blood and bullets splashed on the screen, each revealing a new name: Chris Hemsworth… Adrienne Palicki… etc. The “red” in “Red Dawn” had made it’s appearance. This was going to be a movie that would break new ground. Much like the Ms. Double December Pageant… where a buxom young lady would earn this title after a series of competitions: swimsuit (of course), talent (a term I use loosely), and interview (charm).

Miss Double December - Kevin & BeanThen, the champion would be chosen based solely on those scores and one essential criteria (two Double D-sized breasts) (Actually, you don’t have to have both breasts. KROQ holds an equal opportunity pageant.) I will say this, KROQ knows how to put on a pageant. (The audience consisted solely of guys (mostly Raider Nation) who wanted to see boobs (Really REALLY large boobs.) (We came here, because going to a strip club at 4:30 in the morning would have just been sad.) But, that was where KROQ didn’t disappoint.) The first competition, the swimsuit portion, was held while it was still freezing outside (To say it was nipply, would be an understatement.) After twenty minutes of girls parading around in bikinis, I was thirsty (This wasn’t twenty minutes all at once, it was over the course of thirty-five minutes.) (While I give props to Kevin and Bean for a fun comedic show, they are adept at stretching a one hour and twenty-five minutes of program into four HOURS of radio.)

Back in the present, the credits of “Red Dawn” (and the effects of the previously consumed alcohol) continued: Dan Bradley… Carl Ellsworth… and Santa…? While, at the time, I accepted this final name, in retrospect, I might have imagined that credit (Since attending the movie, I have been unable to verify that Santa was indeed in “Red Dawn”.) (However, I, ALSO, cannot confirm that he WASN’T.) (After all, he does wear red.) At the time, in the theater, it made perfect sense, because just three hours earlier…

LuxI went to get another beer. Now, I’m not sure if it was the effects of the plentiful alcohol, or a coincidental resemblance of the round older man (in a Raiders jacket), but I was pretty sure Kevin and Bean had arranged for Santa to attend… INCOGNITO. He apparently wasn’t going to be taking pictures or handing out presents, because when I called “Hey Santa”, I nearly got the beating of my life from him and his posse (Who knew Santa had full-size people in his posse.) Next came the talent competition. Talents ranged from doing push-ups (Ashley (@SugarSweet66)) to poetry reading (Tanya (@Haiku)) (What did you expect from Ms. Double D?) (It’s not a high-caliber, Donald Trump-sponsored competition like Ms. USA that requires you to ice sculpt or play an instrument.) (Spoiler alert: the girl who did the strip tease as Jessica Rabbit won.) Their talents ranged from “fun” to “more fun”, but their skimpy, skin-tight outfits ranged from “That’s hot.” to “Is she just wearing body paint?”. After enjoying the talents of Tanya (@Tanyalovesyouu), her juggling skills, and especially her outfit, I needed another drink.

Red DawnThe bar was blocked off (too many people inside drinking), but the outside bar was open. Since there was a bit of a line, the bartenders and bartendresses were nice enough to pour two pint beers (I thought to myself, KROQ thinks of everything.) By the time I returned to my friends, the rain had started… it had started DILUTING my beer (effing rain). Back in the theater, I became suspect of the alcohol I had ingested. It seemed to have hurdled me forward through time about twenty minutes. I distinctly remember the theater starting to spin a little, then BAM. There I was, twenty minutes later. The high school kids were hiding in a cabin in the woods (I’m sure this is where Santa made his cameo.) The invading army was going to kill the sheriff (and father) of our Wolverine resistance leaders. As I watched it unfold on the big screen I asked myself the hard questions they asked. Would I rush to save my dad, giving up my group? Or would I watch my father die? Could I fight against innumerable odds? Or would I run to find others? Would I abandon my spot near the pageant catwalk to get a drink? Or would I stay with my friends and endure a life-threatening thirst? (I knew the answer to the latter; I had faced it, that very day.)

Not wanting to lose my spot near the stage at the pageant, I hired an impromptu waitress to go get me a few more Double Pints (I only asked her to bring me back two! I’m not a drunk.) She returned and I tipped her with cash (She must have been new to waitressing because she forgot to give me back my credit card.) Back in the theater, I woke up to a lot of gunfire, and the Russian Invaders were all speaking Korean (I thought to myself, “Interesting choice. I wonder what the symbolism of that is?”). As I searched for answers, my mind wandered to the interview portion of the aforementioned pageant, and the subtext of the contestants… Ally was asked about super powers and which power she would want. She said “I would like to fly, because that would be totally awesome.” As a student of literature (somewhat) and a published author (not true), I seek meaning between the words and beyond the mere phrase. In her eloquent soliloquy, I found her declaration beautiful and her symbolism profound, thus, concluding that she would really like to fly… because… that would be… totally awesome (No matter how I dissected it, I just couldn’t argue with that.)

Red DawnNOTE: Much later, while looking at the research notes (I made them the morning of the screening) I have discovered this piece of info… “While in post­ production, the invading army was changed from Chinese to North Korean in order to maintain access to China’s box office.” Other info in the notes… “Natalie (@NatalieEvaMarie) can volley a soccer ball. Despite her Double D’s, she is quite athletic.” In all honesty, I don’t remember what the rest of the girls said during their interview. First, I’d had many drinks at this point without any food. Second, the girls were still wearing skimpy outfits (Being a male, my brain isn’t wired to stare creepily at her assets AND listen to what she is saying AT THE SAME TIME.) Third, they don’t require these girls to have a BA in Public Speaking (The name of the pageant is Miss Double December, not Miss Double Degree.) After a few commercial breaks and several beers later, I headed to the john. (Why is a restroom also called a john? I don’t know. Somebody with an iPhone look it up.) Then, I saw it. There was a line (somewhat akin to Space Mountain) for two (yes, I said ONLY two) port-a-potties. This was either a gross misstep in planning on the behalf of KROQ,.. ORRRRR it was the most brilliantly executed practical joke ever played on an audience of 500. (I wouldn’t put it past Kevin and Bean to do something like that.) (You haven’t lived until you’ve seen 3­50 grown men actually hopping up and down on one leg doing the PeePee dance.) I personally witnessed four guys arrested for urinating in public (Yes, this was the crowd I’d chosen to hang out with this morning.) After forty-five, (yes, FORTY-FIVE) minutes of waiting in line, I finally made it back to my friends, just in time to see one of Santa’s Elves hump the new Ms. Double December’s leg. (I KNEW I saw Santa!) (BTW, the new crown’s name is Lux (@Luxiboo) and her website is Once you go to her site you will see that she is clearly fit for the title.) And she provided wonderful prequel entertainment to “Red Dawn”.

Now, while I will admit I didn’t actually see the rest of the movie… I can tell you this… it wasn’t loud enough to wake me up. So, that should say something. If you would like further analysis, check out this website I found called Rot­ten To­ma­toes and search for “Red Dawn” (2012). It will show you a bunch. It really seems to be a great place to go to for this kind of thing. Seriously.

NOTE: Since I didn’t meet (Lux) Ms. Double December 2013 at the pageant (or maybe I did and well, you know…) I thought I would try to get her thoughts on “Red Dawn” at a KROQ event the following week. She was not in attendance, but her prequel (Miss Double December 2012) was. Her name was Joanna. She was with her very own entourage, Patti (@JoannasSister) and Veronica (@ChocolateMartini). (They weren’t exactly the entourage you would expect for a MISS DOUBLE DECEMBER but they were charming none the less.) (FYI, on a completely serious note, the platform for Joanna, Ms. Double December 2012, was cancer awareness.) (On a not­-so­-serious note, do I really need to tell you what kind of cancer?)

Red Dawn: 1 star. Even if you sleep through it, you will feel like your time was wasted.
Miss Double December Pageant: 3.5 stars. It delivers exactly what it claims.

Directed by: Dan Bradley
Release Date: November 21, 2012
Run Time: 93 Minutes
Country: USA
Rated: PG-13
Distributor: MGM


One thought on “MOVIE REVIEW – “RED DAWN”

  1. Wow, why is this so focused on the movie? Couldn’t you take the time to include more irrelevant minutiae about a beauty pageant? I don’t click on an article titled MOVIE REVIEW because I want a movie review! Come on!

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