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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best of the Jack Ryan film series.
Based on Tom Clancy's 1984 novel of the same title, "The Hunt for Red October" is the first Jack Ryan adventure on film. Although I like Harrison Ford better in the role of Jack Ryan than either Alec Baldwin or Ben Affleck, "Red October" is the best of the Ryan films partly because of the script, but largely because of the ensemble cast including...
Published on June 27 2004 by rnorton828

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Great movie, poor DVD transfer
Like other reviewers here, I agree in the great quality of the movie but this is by far the worse DVD transfer I have seen. I have seen hundreds of DVDs and none have the poor quality this one has. Blacks are not black and there is "noise" on the picture that you can see all throughout the movie. It is almost like you are watching the movie with a layer of...
Published on July 19 2002 by Bill Stockstill


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best of the Jack Ryan film series., June 27 2004
Based on Tom Clancy's 1984 novel of the same title, "The Hunt for Red October" is the first Jack Ryan adventure on film. Although I like Harrison Ford better in the role of Jack Ryan than either Alec Baldwin or Ben Affleck, "Red October" is the best of the Ryan films partly because of the script, but largely because of the ensemble cast including Scott Glenn, Sam Neill, Tim Curry, James Earl Jones and, of course, Sean Connery as Captain Marko Ramius, the Lithuanian-born commanding officer on the Soviet nuclear submarine Red October who seeks to defect to the United States. Tension builds as Ramius and the Red October move closer to U.S. waters with the Soviet Navy in pursuit and U.S. forces unsure of Ramius' true intentions. "The Hunt for Red October" is a taut thriller, an excellent movie based on a modern masterpiece of a novel, and I fully recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars intelligent,compeliing political thriller about an event that may or may not have happened, Aug. 6 2007
By 
falcon "disdressed12" (canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Hunt for Red October (Special Collector's Edition) (DVD)
this is a very well done and engaging political thriller.it's base on an event which may or may not have occurred in 1984.it's about a rogue Russian Submarine that has disappeared and may be headed toward American territory.the question is,why?both the Russians and the U.S are hunting the sub and have their own reasons for doing so.but time is of the essence.the movie is basically a psychological suspense thriller.this isn't what i would call a nail biting movie,though it does has its moments.it's more of a character study,of one man in particular,the commander of the Russian sub.the last 30 minutes or so are quite tense and down to the wire.the whole movie is highly dramatic but not at all boring,thanks to good writing and directing.Larry Ferguson and Donald Stewart co wrote the screenplay from a novel by Tom Clancy.John McTiernan of Die Hard fame directed.this is an intelligent,thought provoking thriller and i would highly recommend it.you might also want to check out U571 and Crimson Tide
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4.0 out of 5 stars Another Classic Submarine War Film, March 29 2015
By 
From the Musician's Pen (Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
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There are a number of submarine films that have garnered acclaim, including this one. It's very suspenseful and the acting carries the film, rather than special effects, which were state-of-the-art at the time but are kept in a supporting role, as they should be in this film. Like most cold war films and submarine films with no female roles, it will likely not appeal as much to a female audience (at least that's true in my family!).

The basic plot is as follows: Red October is a new and technologically superior Russian submarine and it's heading for the USA under the command of the highly reputed Captain Ramius (Sean Connery). It was created as an undetectable submarine for the purpose of planting bombs/missiles on the USA coast. The Russians soon believe Ramius intends to defect and they send their navy out to sink his submarine. The Russians do not want to reveal the existence of this new submarine to the Americans and tell them that Ramuis has gone mad and intends to fire missiles on the USA. They ask for help locating his submarine. The Americans worry that the Russians are really coming to attack and so they are preparing for war. American CIA analyst Jack Ryan (the lead character from Tom Clancy novels, which this film is based on) is a submarine expert who believes he understands Captain Ramius' motives and can stop a war if he can communicate with the Captain.

The blu-ray looks and sounds excellent, a definite improvement over the DVD. I picked it up for about $8 on Amazon.ca. In terms of special features there's not much: a director's commentary, a theatrical trailer, and a 20-minute documentary on the making of the film which is good but is not remastered and looks rather grainy.

If you like this film, you may like other well reputed submarine films like: K-19 The Widowmaker, U-571, The Enemy Below (1958), Run Silent Run Deep (1958), Crimson Tide (1985), Up Periscope (1959), and Das Boot (the 1981 German film which many believe to be the best submarine film ever).

If you like the Jack Ryan character, there are 5 films based on this Tom Clancy character so far: The Hunt for Red October (1990, played by Alec Baldwin in his first major role), Patriot Games (1992, played by Harrison Ford), Clear and Present Danger (1994, also played by Harrison Ford), Sum of All Fears (2002, played by Ben Affleck), and Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014, played by Chris Pine).
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5.0 out of 5 stars An intellectual thriller of the highest caliber, Aug. 2 2014
By 
Daniel Jolley "darkgenius" (Shelby, North Carolina USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Hunt for Red October (Special Collector's Edition) (DVD)
While I usually try to avoid all things Baldwin, this film is just way too good to miss. It’s hard to imagine a more compelling storyline, which centers on a preeminent Soviet submarine captain going rogue with the shiniest new toy in the Soviet arsenal – the Red October, a new Typhoon class submarine designed for the purpose of sneaking past US defenses and delivering a devastating first strike in any war between the two Cold War adversaries. No one knows what this captain is going to do – not the Soviets and not the Americans. Obviously, the greatest and most likely outcome is an attack on the eastern US that would initiate World War III. At the same time, however, there is also the possibility that Captain Marko Ramius (Sean Connery) might be trying to defect. Neither outcome is palatable to the Soviet regime, so they send the bulk of their fleet toward the North Atlantic to find and destroy the Red October. For the Americans, though, it’s not so simple. Only one thing is clear – they have to find the sub before it penetrates America’s coastal defenses and figure out what Captain Ramius is planning to do. That’s where CIA analyst Jack Ryan (Alec Baldwin) comes in.

The film’s cinematography is excellent – well, apart from what appears to me to be a rather poor green screen shot in the final scene. It can’t be easy to film the bulk of a movie within the close quarters of a submarine – granted, the Red October is pretty freakin’ huge for a sub, but it’s still a sub. Director John McTiernan may be known for blowing up everything in sight in Die Hard, but there really are no extravagant special effects in this movie. This is an intellectual thriller, where subtle hints and exercises in logic drive the story, and when all is said and done you can easily come to believe that everything you’ve seen might really have happened. Tom Clancy really was a master storyteller who took care that no loose strings were left behind.

I'm not going to compare this to other movies featuring Jack Ryan, largely because the only other one I’ve seen is The Sum of All Fears, which features another actor I don’t care for. I will say that Alec Baldwin was good in this movie. Sean Connery, of course, steals the show. His Russian accent won’t win any awards, but the stoicism and inscrutability with which he plays his character really maintains the suspense and keeps you guessing what he’s really up to for most of the movie. He’s equally believable as both a defector and a madman determined to start World War III. The supporting cast, boasting the likes of James Earl Jones, Sam Neill, Tim Curry, and Fred Thompson is top-notch, as well. And, with a running time of two hours and fifteen minutes, you truly get your money’s worth from The Hunt for Red October.
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5.0 out of 5 stars What is Captain Ramius thinking?, Sept. 19 2010
By 
bernie "xyzzy" (Arlington, Texas) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
The date 1984 still in the time of the Soviet Union. The latest class of submarine was just completed. Rumor has it that it has a type of propulsion that would make it invisible to the U.S. detectors. A perfect first strike vehicle. It is about to take its maiden voyage with Captain Marko Ramius (Sean Connery) from Georgia at the helm. Along with him is his second in command and confidant Captain 2nd Rank Vasily Borodin (Sam Neill). Keeping a close eye on them is Political Officer Ivan Yurevich Putin (Peter Firth) and probably others.

The submarine, named Red October seems to have disappeared. Both the Soviet government and the U.S. government are sweating. Does this mean that somehow Captain Marko Ramius has broken his bonds and initiating first strike to become a hero?

CIA analyst Jack Ryan (Alec Baldwin) reads the same sings and comes up with a different conclusion. For his insight he will have to travel by helicopter to the U.S. sub in pursuit.

Based on a Tom Clancy Novel the film has all the pacing and intrigue of the novel. More than just another run of the mill sub movie this is a battle of wills and understanding. Very few Cowboys under water scenes.

Even thought Sean Connery and Alec Baldwin are the main focus of the film the scene where Captain Ramius and Captain Borodin are discussing their future is quite moving and unforgettable especially when the future is played out.
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5.0 out of 5 stars What is Captain Ramius thinking?, July 2 2006
By 
bernie "xyzzy" (Arlington, Texas) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
The date 1984 still in the time of the Soviet Union. The latest class of submarine was just completed. Rumor has it that it has a type of propulsion that would make it invisible to the U.S. detectors. A perfect first strike vehicle. It is about to take its maiden voyage with Captain Marko Ramius (Sean Connery) from Georgia at the helm. Along with him is his second in command and confidant Captain 2nd Rank Vasily Borodin (Sam Neill). Keeping a close eye on them is Political Officer Ivan Yurevich Putin (Peter Firth) and probably others.

The submarine, named Red October seems to have disappeared. Both the Soviet government and the U.S. government are sweating. Does this mean that somehow Captain Marko Ramius has broken his bonds and initiating first strike to become a hero?

CIA analyst Jack Ryan (Alec Baldwin) reads the same sings and comes up with a different conclusion. For his insight he will have to travel by helicopter to the U.S. sub in pursuit.

Based on a Tom Clancy Novel the film has all the pacing and intrigue of the novel. More than just another run of the mill sub movie this is a battle of wills and understanding. Very few Cowboys under water scenes.

Even thought Sean Connery and Alec Baldwin are the main focus of the film the scene where Captain Ramius and Captain Borodin are discussing their future is quite moving and unforgettable especially when the future is played out.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best movies you will ever see, May 28 2004
By 
Matthew Edmundson (Winter Haven, Florida United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Tom Clancy is a master writer. His books are amazing thrillers and the moives haven't been that bad either. This is the best of all the Tom Clancy books that have been made into moives and is one of the best book adaptations ever.
Captian Ramius(Connery) is the best the Soviet fleet has to offer. He's trained most of it and he's now in charge of a new Soviet sub. This sub has a new drive system that runs silent meaning it can't be detected by other subs sonars. After Ramius writes a letter to the Soviet Naval command the search is on. They alert the Americans saying Ramius and his crew has gone mad.
The Hunt for The Red October is on. The U.S. can't play around on this idea because the October could park in any U.S. bay and launch hundreds of Nuclear missiles. Jack Ryan(Baldwin) is a CIA Operative that gets selected to help with this mission. He's met Ramius before and doesn't believe that the man wants to harm the U.S. He believes that Ramius wants to defect along with his officers to the U.S., but he's not sure how Ramius is planning to do it. He now has only a couple of hours to prove the intentions of Ramius and save the ship before the U.S. or Soviet fleets find it and sink her.
All the actors are fantastic in the movie. Alec Baldwin is Jack Ryan is flawless. He played the role to perfection and it's the best movie he's ever made. Sean Connery is the man. Instead of killing Soviets he plays one to perfection in this moive. I love his accent and I though he did a great job of faking it. I loved Sam Neil in the moive. His character Vasily has always been one of my favorites because of his loyalty to Ramius. One of Neils best performances. Tim Curry is good as the weasal Soviet doctor. He plays a weasal better than anybody else. James Earl Jones is himself in this movie and like Connery is just the man. I also like Courtney Vance as 2nd Petty Officer Jones. He gives one of the most memorable performances of the movie. This is an all star cast and everybody is fantastic.
John Mctiernan is one of the best directors in Hollywood. He was one of the biggest when this moive was done with hit titles under his belt like Die Hard and Predator. He can make a good action thriller and this is one of the best ones ever made.
The cinematography is great in the film. You feel like your on real naval ships. The uniforms are authenic on both fleets. The sound is fantastic. This is such a well made movie and the is the movie that all submarine movies should stive to look like.
This is such a good movie. It's made to perfection with a great cast, well made, awesome score, and is just flawless. If you want to sit down and watch a good action thriller than this is it. You will struggle to find a better made movie than this.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The only thing that beats watching this is reading the book!, March 27 2004
By A Customer
Hunt for Red October is an amazing movie, full of lots of plot twists and turns. I would recommend this movie for an fan of action/war movies. The best parts of the movie take place on the two main submarines: the USS Dallas and the Red October. These scenes detail the cat and mouse hunt between the Dallas and the Red October. This "hunt" is gripping and very suspenseful. The end of the movie is also great and very satisfying, though I won't give it away.
If you are considering watching this movie, I have one caveat for you: read the book by Tom Clancy first. The book has better dialogue than the movie, along with much more action and battles(as if the movie didn't have enough!). If you are interested by naval battles or aerial dogfights, read the book! Both the book and the movie were so exciting that they could be used for Navy/Coast Guard recruitment videos!
The only bad part about the movie is that it doesn't quite live up to the book. However, the book is as close to perfect as one can get, so the movie had no chance of equaling it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A superb film version of Clancy's excellent novel!, Jan. 2 2004
By 
Roger J. Buffington (Huntington Beach, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This is one of my very favorite movies of all time. It is, of course, the story of a Soviet submarine captain attempting to defect to the United States with his state-of-the-art "first strike" submarine during the latter days of the Cold War. The bestselling novel upon which the movie is based is the one that made Tom Clancy famous, and the movie hews close to the original story, rarely straying from it.
Sean Connery is magnificent as Captain Marko Ramius, the Soviet sub captain. He absolutely becomes the role, and whenever I re-read the novel I see Connery in my mind's eye as Ramius. Alec Baldwin does fine as Jack Ryan, although I don't find him to be nearly as good as Harrison Ford, who plays Ryan in the subsequent "Jack Ryan" movies (e.g. Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger). He's wildly better than Affleck though. While some reviewers have been critical of Baldwin as Jack Ryan, my own opinion is that he succeeded, and probably made a serious career mistake by not ensuring that he played Ryan in the subsequent films. Sam Neil does his customary stellar job as Ramius' second-in-command and co-conspirator. By the way, I thought that the actors who played the other Russian submarine officers all did fine jobs. They seemed Russian, at least to me.
The entire supporting cast does very well in this film, and everything comes together very effectively, making this one of the truly great films about the Cold War. The story transports from novel to Silver Screen beautifully, and the DVD is excellent. This is one that belongs in everyone's collection, and it is one that you will watch over and over again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Taunt and Compelling, Sept. 27 2003
By 
mljkb (I ain't tellin you, QE CAN) - See all my reviews
Adapting any book to the screen is a tall order, but adapting a dense Tom Clancy book, like "The Hunt for Red October," is easily concievable as a challenge. In part, that is why this film adaption is so watchable. It still keeps the meticulous essence of the book while maintaining an up-tempo pace. That part is due to talented action director John Mctiernan (Die Hard, Predator, The Thomas Crown Affair). Already having made a name for himself with the teriffic "Die Hard," Mctiernan brought that same sense of preciseness and pace to this film. But it would be irresponsinble to neglect the films' outstanding cast, which include Alec Baldwin pulling out a great performance as the reluctant hero Jack Ryan, the crusty Sean Connery as the stoic Russian submarine captain, Sam Neil as his loyal first mate, Tim Curry as the Russian ships' doctor and James Earl Jones as the head of the CIA.
The film starts as Connery takes a revolutionary Russian nucleur sub Red October in a daring attempt to defect to the Americans. When the Russians get wind of this, they stop it nothing to retrieve the sub before the Americans. A tense chase insues as the Red October is caught between the American Atlantic fleet and half the Russian navy. To try and help the Captain in his quest, CIA specialist Jack Ryan boards the sub to help it reach safety. But in their midst their may be a sabateur with more loyality to his country than his Captain.
The exciting story is compounded by the films' up-tempo pace, exceptional cast and tense action. Though my favorite Jack Ryan is Harrison Ford (hey, he's Harrison Ford, one cannot help but get behind him) Alec Baldwin gets that close to passing him as Ryan. In some ways, Baldwin makes better decisions about how to portray the hero than Ford, surprisingly. All this adds up to one of the best action movies I have seen.
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