The Hunt for Red October

7.62 h 15 min1990X-RayPG
Moscow, Washington and a CIA analyst track a renegade Soviet captain and his new submarine.
Sean ConneryAlec BaldwinScott Glenn
English [CC]
Audio languages
EnglishEnglish [Audio Description]
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Mace Neufeld
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PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
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4.8 out of 5 stars

15006 global ratings

  1. 88% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 8% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 2% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 0% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 1% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

Dr. D123Reviewed in the United States on July 14, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
4K Version is Better than the earlier 1080 Blu-ray Version
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Please Note: My review and ratings are based on the quality of the new 4K version of this film--images, sound, and extras and how these compare to the previously-released Blu-ray version of the film. I am not rating the acting, direction, set design, etc. which can be found in other places, but instead I am helping you decide to upgrade to 4K or not.

The quality of 4K films, in comparison to the regular Blu-ray versions, often depends upon two things: (1) the quality of the original that they have to work with; and (2) how much effort they put into the project. Here there must have started with either the original film or a first-generation print of it.

There is a noticeable upgrade from the regular Blu-ray version to the 4K version. I did a side-by-side comparison of both films and you will notice improvements in the video quality of the 4K version--more details, sharper images throughout, improved resolution, and better color saturation. You will notice the improvements most in outdoor, daylight scenes and less so in night-time scenes. There are no glitches in the print--no "snow," spots, or lines. It is a very good image.

Interestingly, there is no mention of this new release being an HDR version of 4K, and that's probably a good thing. HDR makes the contrast sharper by making dark colors darker and light colors lighter. This has worked well for some films and not well for other films. The most common complaint for HDR when it is bad is that the scenes are too dark in the 4K version of the film, particularly night-time scenes (Skyfall, Spectre, & Van Helsing all suffer from this). Happily no HDR problems here. Everything looks good, including the night-time scenes or dimly-lit submarine underwater scenes.

The 5.1 audio is excellent and an improvement from the regular Blu-Ray version. Several special features are included as well, including commentary by the director and a feature entitled "Beneath the Surface."

I now own about sixty 4K movies or nature specials. Roughly 45 of the 60 show noticeable improvements in video and audio. The others either are roughly the same from Blu-Ray to 4K or suffer from the aforementioned HDR darkness issues. So it's overall good but in some cases not worth buying the film again in 4K. My favorites in 4K and I'm talking about imagery, not the plot or acting? Jurassic World, The Bridge on the River Kwai, Planet Earth II, and the Flight of the Butterflies. Those films really wow you in 4K.

This is an excellent film in 4K and is worth upgrading to if you already own the regular Blu-ray version.
88 people found this helpful
Amazon CustomerReviewed in the United States on March 29, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Five Stars
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One ping only please.
73 people found this helpful
A. RoseReviewed in the United States on December 1, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Probably the best adaptation from any of Clancy's novels
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This is a 1990 movie based on a 1984 novel by Tom Clancy. It stars Sean Connery as the Soviet captain of an experimental submarine. Launched during the Cold War, the captain and his officers decide to defect to America, but soon find themselves the target of, not only their own fleet, but also the American Navy, who have been told that they intend to launch their nuclear weapons on the United States. Only CIA consultant Jack Ryan, played by Alec Baldwin, believes in their true intentions, and fights to keep the military from killing them. This film has a stellar supporting cast, including Scott Glenn, James Earl Jones, Sam Neill, and Tim Curry. Probably the best adaptation from any of Clancy's novels, this was the one that introduced the character of Jack Ryan to American movie audiences. The character has since appeared in many action films, played by such notables as Harrison Ford (between his Star Wars films), Ben Affleck, and Chris Pine (known for also playing the latest version of Captain Kirk). This is a thriller that will keep you guessing and on the edge of your seat until the very end. Perhaps one of my very favorites in the drama/action genre.
65 people found this helpful
Karlie LaumerReviewed in the United States on September 3, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
If you've never seen this film, just watch it now.
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I've seen this movie 984 times. I still love every minute of it. It also makes me nostalgic for my dad, because he loved watching it too.

Honestly, no review is needed. Anyone who hasn't seen it, please change that soon. The movie is amazing. Great music, Sean Connery and Alec Baldwin at the top of their game, incredible supporting actors, and a top notch script.

And be still my heart - when you get to see Sir Sean AND Alec Baldwin in dress Navy blues? It's an added perk.
38 people found this helpful
JJCEOReviewed in the United States on July 8, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
First class movie that is worth watching!
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This is an exceptional movie and you should see it. I own the Bluray version but we just watched the film using Amazon Prime to stream to my digital projector. The streaming worked perfectly and the video and audio quality were perfect.

This is an excellent story based on a novel written by Tom Clancy. To top it off the film features a strong cast of actors and it is directed well. It is one of my favorite movies with the character of Jack Ryan. The book was excellent and this film follows the book very closely.

I strongly recommend this film. I have probably watched it 5 times. This is a good film to have in your library of films. It features great acting and a good story line.

This was one of Tom Clancy's best books and the movie version was created in a very realistic and entertaining way.

This is a good film that you should have in your video library.
32 people found this helpful
Mike PowersReviewed in the United States on June 22, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
One of my all-time favorite movies... and the best Tom Clancy book movie adaptation ever.
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"The Hunt for Red October" is one of my favorite movies of all time. Since 1990, whe it was first released, I've owned this classic subarine film in three formats: VHS videocassette, DVD, and now in Prime Video. This is the first time I've had the opportunity to see "The Hunt for Red October" in glorious high definition... and it was well worth the wait!

"The Hunt for Red October" stars, among others, Sean Connery, Alec Baldwin, James Earl Jones, Scott Glenn, Courtney B. Vance, and Richard Jordan. It iis is a film adaptation of Tom Clancy's technological/political thriller novel of the same name. It tells the story of a famous Soviet submarine captain named Marko Ramius (played by Sean Connery) who takes a newly designed nuclear submarine out to sea in order to test its top-secret silent underwater propulsion system. Unbeknownst to his superiors in Moscow, he intends to defect to the United States with the submarine. He leaves a letter behind for his boss informing him of his decision. Naturally, the entire Soviet navy deploys in hot pursuit in order to stop the Red October.

The CIA gets wind of the submarine's existence, and analyst Jack Ryan (Alec Baldwin), who has studied Ramius, figures out his plan to defect. This sets in motion a grand design involving the CIA and the entire US Navy to deceive the Soviets into thinking the "Red October" has been destroyed, thereby averting a potential nuclear war...

Everything about "The Hunt for Red October" is excellent. The acting is wonderful, the script (written by Larry Ferguson, who also acted in the film) is sharp with crackling dialogue, and the action sequences are exciting. Despite its 2 hour, 15 minute runtime, the pace never flags. And oh, and did I mention the stunning high definition streaming video and surround audio? All of this combines to make "The Hunt for Red October" one of the most entertaining films I've ever seen, even thirty years since its initial release. Most highly recommended.
8 people found this helpful
Sean H.Reviewed in the United States on March 3, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
This might be my all time favorite movie. I've watched it countless times on VHS
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This might be my all time favorite movie. I've watched it countless times on VHS, then DVD, and now I've upgraded to Blu-ray. While the transfer to Blu-ray is excellent, this movie suffers from the same problem most underwater movies do. It seems that Hollywood can produce a movie about anything that is completely realistic, unless it takes place underwater. Everything just seems to fall apart when it comes to the underwater scenes. Based on the age of this movie (and hence the technology available to produce it), when transferred to Blu-ray this problem is only exacerbated. I think the saving grace for this movie in the theaters originally was the limited ability to put out a level of brightness modern flat-panel TVs have no problem with today. But if you watch it in a completely dark room on a big TV it's still a fantastic movie, you just might have to focus on the plot a little more than the visuals.
22 people found this helpful
John P. Jones IIIReviewed in the United States on February 23, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
Since the Russians are “topical,” yet again…
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… I thought I step outside my normal genres of movies and watch a Cold War classic “thriller,” based on the Tom Clancy eponymous novel, which was published in 1984. The novel has been fairly wide-read, with 1500 plus reviews posted at Amazon. The movie version, directed by John Tiernan, was released in 1990. And the movie has more than 3000 reviews. In evaluating an item I normally try to compare it against other items within its category. This can sometimes lead to some screwy results, as it were, when one is evaluating a “torrid romance novel.” In both that case, and in the case of “Red October,” how much “disbelief” is it appropriate to suspend? In addition, I could not help but compare this movie with one produced almost three decades earlier, with some common themes: “Dr. Strangelove.”

“Red October” is the latest super-secret Soviet submarine, with a new propulsion system that permits it to run very quietly, almost undetectable by normal sonar. It is named for the month in which the Russian Revolution of 1917 occurred, which actually happened in November, if one is keeping track on the Gregorian calendar (it occurred in October, on the Julian calendar, which was operative in the Russian Orthodox Catholic world at the time.) “Red October” is under the command of Captain Marko Ramius, who is not Russian, but Lithuanian. He is at the very top of his game in the Russian navy, having trained many of the other sub commanders. It is hard to imagine anyone playing that part better than Sean Connery. James Earl Jones is Admiral Greer in the American navy. Alex Baldwin plays the part of Jack Ryan, a famous character in his own right, who continues to live on today. Ryan is a book-writing CIA operative, also at the top of his game.

Ramius has decided to defect to the Americans, taking the sub with him. Early on, it is demonstrated that he knows the “enemy” (the Americans) well. Although his name is not mentioned in the movie, in the book that Ramius carries in his cabin, the famous quote by J. Robert Oppenheimer (“that fella up there in Los Alamos,” as he was once described to me), “Now I am Death, the Destroyer of Worlds,” taken from the Bhagavad-Gita, is underlined. It is the boat’s political officer, Ivan PUTIN (I can’t make that up!) who questions Ramius about this. Ramius blames his wife for underlining it! Later on, Ramius draws on the precedence of Cortez burning his ships once he got to Mexico. Adding to the glossy patina of intellectualism of some of the characters, the very clever American sonar technician enjoys his opera!

The two-hours plus flew by. It is a “thriller,” after all, with enough twists and turns in the plot to keep it very interesting. Ramius had written a letter telling the Soviet naval leadership that he was defecting, and thus the entire Russian navy is after him. The Americans can’t be sure he is defecting, or going to blow up NYC and DC. Every second counts, of course. Several bushel baskets full of “disbelief” must be suspended, for example when the American sub commander, who has Ramius in his sights, must surface to pick up Ryan, who is being helicoptered to the sub, in a chopper with not quite enough fuel, and he drops in the ocean to keep his rendezvous. Ugh. And that is just one example.

In “Dr. Strangelove,” it is an obsessed rogue American general who launches a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union. There is a lot of slapstick gallows-type humor as the Russians and Americans work together to thwart the attack. In “Red October,” the “rogue” Russian commander is not depicted as being crazy and the gallows-type humor is missing, but there are similar scenes of the Russian and American leadership working together, sometimes at cross-purposes. I think “Strangelove,” even with its deliberately exaggerated humor (“a fella could have a good time in Vegas with all that”), is a much better depiction of the real world than “Red October,” with its heroic CIA operatives jumping off the helicopter cable into the icy North Atlantic.

Overall, the time did “fly by,” and I am most surprised that no other reviewer has called out this fantasy as being even more unlikely than “Major King Kong” (Slim Pickens) riding that nuclear bomb down to its target (Note: James Earl Jones also played in “Strangelove” as Lt. Lothar Zogg). For “Red October,” a “screwy” 3-stars.
2 people found this helpful
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