The Hunt For Red October (Enthusiasms 1)

First in an ongoing / irregular series.

Peak McTiernan (fresh off Die Hard and Predator). Real submarines for surface exterior shots and kickass models for underwater exteriors. A PG-rated film clearly made for grown-ups.

The classy animated title typography, rippling red from Cyrillic into Roman. (When my junior high social-studies class wrote to pen pals in the USSR, I asked mine to spell out “Red October” in Russian so I could scrutinize the letterforms.) Basil Poledouris’s score. (One of the few cassette tapes I owned at age 12.) And that poster! (I couldn’t find a copy to put up on my bedroom wall, so I settled for Crimson Tide.)

Sean Connery’s hair. Stellan Skarsgård’s glowering. Scott Glenn’s eyeglasses. Alec Baldwin’s everything.

One ping only. I would like to have seen Montana. Most things in here don’t react too well to bullets.

Jack Ryan’s sarcastic impressions of other characters.

This perfectly elegant shot:

Crazy Ivan! Thor’s Twins. Combat tactics. Someplace deep.