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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Desert Island film........
I have always considered 'The Hunt for Red October' to be one of my very favourite films, definitely top three, and my choice of film if I was allowed just one prior to be stuck on a desert island!

I first saw the film on it's initial cinema release, I was in my mid-teens and went with my dad. I then bought the novel, and still read it once every couple of...
Published 24 months ago by IOWBOY

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Film, Above Average Blu Ray
Having read a few reviews saying that the quality of the transfer for the film wasn't good I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. It's not going to blow anyone away but it still looks very good. Considering that much of the film is set inside submarines it could have turned into just a dark blur but it isn't.

I have only seen this film on video before...
Published 17 months ago by MLindsay89


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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Desert Island film........, 29 July 2012
By 
IOWBOY - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Hunt for Red October [Blu-ray] [1990] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
I have always considered 'The Hunt for Red October' to be one of my very favourite films, definitely top three, and my choice of film if I was allowed just one prior to be stuck on a desert island!

I first saw the film on it's initial cinema release, I was in my mid-teens and went with my dad. I then bought the novel, and still read it once every couple of years now. I bought the film on VHS, almost wearing it out before updating to DVD.

The lack of difference in picture quality between VHS and DVD always disappointed me (although the sound was noticeably better on DVD); particularly so with the underwater scenes, you could hardly see anything!

This has very much changed with the Blu Ray release.

The picture and sound quality are a huge improvement, and the level of detail on the underwater scenes now make them look almost like they have been re-filmed!

The sound is superb, particularly the sound of the sonar and the explosions!

I am still slightly suspicious of just how much a Blu Ray can improve a film of over twenty or so years old, but then again I suppose a lot depends on the source material made available for the transfer.

This is most definitely a good one, and I would say that if you consider yourself a fan of this film ie you watch it with some degree of regularity, you should upgrade to Blu Ray despite already owning it on DVD; you won't regret it!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Blu Ray looks amazing..., 26 Mar 2012
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This review is from: The Hunt for Red October [Blu-ray] [1990] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
Owned this on VHS (twice, one pan+scan, one widescreen) then dvd.

Now we have the Blu Ray, it's a clean and very 'movie-like' image, has great sound and is a major improvement in resolution, all of the underwater sequences are now much clearer than on any previous format, I spotted many details that I've never noticed before.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Languages & Verdict, 30 Sep 2011
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This review is from: The Hunt for Red October [Blu-ray] [1990] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
Blu Ray all zone (not confirmed)

Ratio of the feature film:
2.35:1

Languages of the feature film:
Dolby True HD 5.1: English
Dolby 5.1: French, Italian, German, Castilian Spanish
Dolby 2.0 Surround: Commentary by the director John McTiernan

Subtitles for the feature film and the making of:
French, German, Italian, Castilian Spanish, Dutch, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish and English for the hard of hearings.

Verdict:
This film on Blu Ray is really amazing, a good picture with an outstanding soundtrack. The soundtrack is perfect with a fantastic music. The picture has a natural noise quite visible during the dark shots but not too annoying.
Even if the pictures is not 100% perfect, it gives us much more details about the models submarine for instance the missiles hatches visible on the hull of the Typhoon, the grid pattern on the outer bow doors of the caterpillar. We can also count the missiles silos when Ryan is about to go after the cook and show us how long the submarine really is, it makes the scene looking truly impressive!
High Definition picture means details we are not supposed to see !!
- We can clearly see the whole deck and the conn tower of the Red October is a giant model (where Sean Connery and Sam Neill stand at the beginning of the film) as we can see the edges of the model barely submerged.
- Technical mistake about this model, there is no wake as there are no propellers either which in fact are visible on a real typhoon-class submarine (when afloat).
- The wires holding the 3 models submarines are visible on nearly every "underwater" shot. For instance, when the first torpedo is shot at the Red October, we can clearly see several wires holding the Red October when she is evading the attack.
- The CGI effects are quite obtrusive but it is 1989 CGI, in fact we can say they are good considering what we were capable of doing in the 80s.

Overall, it is a true pleasure to see this film on Blu Ray with its beautiful picture. Although we see the wires holding the sub, the underwater sequences still look superb thanks to the flawless motion and lighting of the 3 submarines.

Bonuses:
- Making of "Beneath the surface" -> Dolby 2.0, 29 min, SD, subtitled.
- Theatrical Trailer -> Dolby 5.1, 1.5 min, HD, no subtitle.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic Cold War cat and mouse game, 4 Oct 2011
By 
LXIX (scotland) - See all my reviews
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The Hunt for Red October, a 1990 adaptation of the Tom Clancy novel, is set in 1984 and is one of the most celebrated movie productions to capture the Cold War era (grossing over $200 million). Ok, it's rather far-fetched and, of course, the yanks are portrayed in a better light than the Russians, but nevertheless this is a quality thriller and recommended viewing. In an age when nuclear submarines carry more firepower than can possibly be imagined, this film cost $30 million to make and represents a 130 minute high stakes poker game beneath the waves of the North Atlantic ocean between three main protagonists: a Russian nuclear sub commander intent on defecting with his nation's latest technology, his Soviet comrades who are seeking to deny him this course of action and the bewildered American Navy who are trying to second guess the situation.

Sean Connery plays the lead role of Captain Marko Ramius, a Lithuanian (known as the 'Vilnius schoolteacher') who rose to the top ranks in the Soviet Union navy, and who has great presence and distinction. Yes, a large number of submarine and Cold War clichés are all present here, but the Hunt for Red October is no doubt up there as one of the best submarine movies.

Extras include the Director's commentary and a behind-the-scenes documentary 'Beneath the Surface'.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Underwater Cold War tensions, 28 Nov 2011
By 
RR Waller "ISeneca" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
John McTiernan directed this great film based on Tom Clancy's novel and, for the most part, it sticks to the book. Although I had difficulties with Sean Connery's growling Scottish accent in the mouth of a Soviet sea captain, I grew accustomed to it and, in such a gripping story with superb acting from Connery, who really looks the part, (except the ...) and Alec Baldwin, it was easily forgotten.

It is a great Cold War story with limited sets (in submarines) which focus attention even more tightly on the characters. It reminded me of General Patton and Field-Marshall Rommel and other war leaders - "Know your enemy". It is fascinating in the way they develop understanding amid mutual suspicion until the startling climax.

Great film worth the investment - even the "expensive" collectible version (a concept I'm still not sure about. What makes the same DVD more collectible?).
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic sub movie and nice documentary, 21 Nov 2004
By 
Darren Harrison "DVD collector and reviewer" (Washington D.C.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Director John McTiernan has had a checkered past as a movie maker. He has made some of the best movies to come out of Hollywood in recent years (`Die Hard' and `The Thomas Crown Affair') and yet he is also the one responsible for some of the worst big budget productions (`The 13th Warrior,' `Nomads' and `The Last Action Hero'). Thankfully for fans of the Tom Clancy novel on which `The Hunt for Red October' is based, this movie falls into the first category. And equally lucky for fans of the novel and film is the fact that Paramount Pictures has seen fit to replace the previous movie-only bare bones DVD release with a special collectors edition.
In 1990 Paramount Pictures released the Sean Connery/Alec Baldwin starring adaptation of the novel. The movie was a triumphant success, even given its longer than usual running time and its lack of real action (most of the actual action occurs in the final moments of the film). What held the movie together, and kept the viewers rapt attention, was the simply incredible acting and presence of Sean Connery as Soviet sub captain Marko Ramius and the building suspense and tension that pervades the well structured plot.
The plot centers on the plan by Ramius to, with the help of some fellow crewmembers, to defect to the United States, taking with him the newest sub in the Russian fleet - the Red October (named after the October revolution. The Red October is capable of running silent with a new propulsion system that makes it almost invisible to sonar. The Russians launch a mission to destroy the submarine and even tell the Americans that Ramius is a rogue in an attempt to elicit their help in sinking the ship.
The one American who doesn't believe the Russian story is CIA analyst Jack Ryan (played in this movie by Alec Baldwin). Having met Ramius previously and studied him he suspects the true intention of the Soviet captain. He must convince his bosses and eventually an American sub captain (played wonderfully by Scott Glenn) to trust him and give Ramius a chance.
Taut and at times nerve wrenching (the blind timed navigating through the underwater trenches), the `Hunt for Red October' is simply one of the best techno-thrillers to come out of Hollywood in the past two decades. Sticking fairly close to the Clancy novel, McTiernan keeps building the pressure and ratcheting up of the stakes until an explosive final confrontation off the Labrador coast.
For the collectors edition Paramount has provided us with not only a commentary by McTiernan but also a nice "making of.." documentary. I have always been disappointed with McTiernan commentaries (`The Thomas Crown Affair' is a case in point) and again here with `The Hunt for Red October' there is a lot of dead air with not much being said. Where this DVD does score top marks is in the documentary. We are provided with some fairly in-depth insight into what went into the making of the picture.
Featuring all the leading actors in the movie and the production team responsible the documentary covers every angle and even reveals how close they came to not signing Connery when the Scottish actor was faxed the entire script sans the opening scroll.
A great movie and this well-made documentary make this DVD a must buy - Recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hunt for Red October (Blu-Ray), 5 April 2013
By 
A. Douglas "Alastair J Douglas" (Erskine, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Hunt for Red October [Blu-ray] [1990] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
Bought this as part of a project to replace all my old VHS movies and have not been disappointed. Colour and sound quality are excellent . The movie is one of Sean Connery's best and the action is great.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Film, Above Average Blu Ray, 11 Feb 2013
This review is from: The Hunt for Red October [Blu-ray] [1990] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
Having read a few reviews saying that the quality of the transfer for the film wasn't good I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. It's not going to blow anyone away but it still looks very good. Considering that much of the film is set inside submarines it could have turned into just a dark blur but it isn't.

I have only seen this film on video before so can't speak as to whether you should upgrade from DVD to Blu Ray but it is a very nice looking film. If anything is an issue it's that it can seem rather dull outside of the submarines. Something I was quite surprised by.

As for the film itself, when the film was in the stages of getting made, many studios didn't want to touch it because they thought it was too complicated. It isn't really, there is a very good story here, all you have to do is pay attention.

Sean Connery I think can sometimes just end up playing himself in many films, what I mean by that is he doesn't seem to be trying to do anything different with a lot of his performances. I personally love Sean Connery though and have to say that in this there is something slightly different about him. He plays his character as someone a lot colder than we are used to seeing, somewhat distant from things at times, somebody who you can see has a million things going on in his head that he keeps beneath the surface.

The rest of the cast all play their parts well, obviously Alec Baldwin has the biggest part and he is very often used to help explain things to the audience. However I don't see his character of Jack Ryan as being integral to the story, there is nothing about him personally that really makes him stand out, or appear as if he could have a whole franchise of films starring him. The other Jack Ryan films starring Harrison Ford are more focused on him and his actions. He is just a part of what is happening in this film.

The film is now 23 years old and despite the frequent use of special effects there isn't that obvious aged feel to them. There isn't quite the sense of claustrophobia that you get in many films set on submarines because the film has a much larger scope and doesn't spend the whole time under water. This helps to tell the much larger story although does mean we get to spend a bit less time than we would probably like on board the Red October.

Overall, a very good tense cold war drama with possibly one of Sean Connery's best performances and a strong supporting cast. As a high definition movie you probably won't be blown away but still very decent presentation.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Transfer, 9 Aug 2012
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This review is from: The Hunt for Red October [Blu-ray] [1990] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
The transfer of this film to Blu Ray is amazing. Picture quality is great, especially the underwater scenes, great details on the subs etc. The only reason I did not give this a full 5 star rating is that the sound is a bit on the quiet side. I had to increase my Samsung TV volume from 8 to 24 to hear it properly. I also checked on a different blu ray player and TV, still the same regardless of the sound mode on the TV.

All in all a must by for anyone who enjoys the film. A lot better than the DVD, which I own.

Picture 5/5
Sound 3/5
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Hunt For Red October, 2003 Special Collector's Edition - Great release of a great film, 8 April 2010
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This really is a classic film. Dating from the end of the cold war era, when America and Soviet Russia were constantly flexing their nuclear muscles in the Atlantic, it perfectly embodies the paranoia of the age. John McTiernan pulls out all the stops to direct a taut thriller of epic proportions.

Carried mainly by impressive performances from Sean Connery, in one of his most memorable roles, and Alec Baldwin, this tells the story of a Russian submarine commander (Connery) trying to defect. The Russians are trying to sink him, as are the Americans, who think that he has gone rogue and is about to launch a nuclear strike on America. One man, Jack Ryan (Baldwin) has guessed the truth and has to convince his own government of the truth, contact Ramius and, finally, avoid the Russians. All in a day's work...

As well as the great script, full of twists and turns, and taut direction, this film is really made by appearance from a host of great character actors. Tim Curry, Peter Firth and Joss Ackland to name but a few. In fact, for me, it's Joss Ackland who makes the whole film, even though he's only in it for two minutes, his facial expression at the end of his appearance is just perfect and seals the film nicely.

This edition presents the film in its proper widescreen, with a really good 5.1 surround sound. There is also a DTS soundtrack, which sounds really good (especially `one ping only'!). There is a decent set of extras, all in all this is a package well worth getting.
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