The Hunt for Red October (1990)

PG | 134 mins | Drama | 2 March 1990

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HISTORY

According to a 21 Sep 1988 LAT article, producer Mace Neufeld optioned the film rights to Tom Clancy's first novel The Hunt for Red October in 1984, before the book was published. Neufeld originally offered the project to MGM/UA but was turned away, and every major studio in Hollywood, with the exception of Orion Pictures, was equally disinterested. Orion, however, stipulated that Neufeld was required to offset the cost of production if the company decided to pull out of the deal, and Neufeld declined the offer. When the novel was published and achieved popularity, MGM/UA expressed renewed interest in the project. While Neufeld was waiting for confirmation from MGM/UA in 1986, Paramount’s motion picture group chairman, Ned Tanen, read the novel on a flight to London and immediately made a deal with Neufeld. The first version of the script, written by Donald E. Stewart with the assistance of Clancy, did not meet Paramount’s approval. The studio then turned the story over to Robert Garland and, later, Larry Ferguson. According to an 18 Mar 1991 article in HR , the writers produced twenty-two drafts before the script was approved.
       As reported in LAT , writing was also delayed nearly six months by a Writer’s Guild strike, and a final draft by Ferguson was delivered to Paramount during the summer of 1988. At that time, however, Clancy was engaged in a copyright dispute between the novel’s first publisher, the Naval Institute Press, and its current publisher, G. P. Putnam’s Sons. ABC Studios, which was embarking on a television production of another Clancy best-seller, ... More Less

According to a 21 Sep 1988 LAT article, producer Mace Neufeld optioned the film rights to Tom Clancy's first novel The Hunt for Red October in 1984, before the book was published. Neufeld originally offered the project to MGM/UA but was turned away, and every major studio in Hollywood, with the exception of Orion Pictures, was equally disinterested. Orion, however, stipulated that Neufeld was required to offset the cost of production if the company decided to pull out of the deal, and Neufeld declined the offer. When the novel was published and achieved popularity, MGM/UA expressed renewed interest in the project. While Neufeld was waiting for confirmation from MGM/UA in 1986, Paramount’s motion picture group chairman, Ned Tanen, read the novel on a flight to London and immediately made a deal with Neufeld. The first version of the script, written by Donald E. Stewart with the assistance of Clancy, did not meet Paramount’s approval. The studio then turned the story over to Robert Garland and, later, Larry Ferguson. According to an 18 Mar 1991 article in HR , the writers produced twenty-two drafts before the script was approved.
       As reported in LAT , writing was also delayed nearly six months by a Writer’s Guild strike, and a final draft by Ferguson was delivered to Paramount during the summer of 1988. At that time, however, Clancy was engaged in a copyright dispute between the novel’s first publisher, the Naval Institute Press, and its current publisher, G. P. Putnam’s Sons. ABC Studios, which was embarking on a television production of another Clancy best-seller, Patriot Games (1987), was unable to procure a release of rights for the character “Jack Ryan” from the Naval Institute Press without substantial compensation, and the amount was a matter of contention. Paramount claimed that its $450,000 contract for The Hunt for Red October provided rights over any sequel, including Patriot Games , therefore giving Paramount precedence over ABC for rights to the Ryan character. LAT reported that Paramount was concerned a television production would create an image of Ryan that did not fit with their film’s characterization. According to Clancy’s attorney, Robert Youdelman, the dispute ended the deal with ABC, although, he contended, Paramount ultimately did not hold a claim on the character rights. Paramount withheld comment on the dispute in the LAT article, but an executive reported that the studio was close to securing John McTiernan as director. According to LAT , Paramount set an estimated budget of $18 million at this time, and noted their success at reaching its projected October 1989 release date depended on the assistance of the Navy and their access to personnel and ships.       
       Casting began in Sep 1988, according to HR on 18 Mar 1991, and Neufeld’s first choice for Ryan was Kevin Costner, but Costner declined the role because he was working on Dances with Wolves (1990, see entry). Klaus Maria Brandauer was originally cast in the role of “Marko Ramius” but dropped out a week after principal photography began, and four weeks before he was due in a scene, to fulfill a previous commitment to direct the Austrian-German film Seven Minutes (1989). A 2 May 1989 DV news item announced Brandauer was replaced by Sean Connery, but, as reported in HR , this last-minute transition increased the budget by $4 million due to rewrites adapting Connery’s character into the role and a one day delay in production. According to HR , the filmmakers began pre-production without having a “green-light” from Paramount, and creative talent was working week-to-week under the threat of being shut down at any moment. In Jan 1989, the project was officially given a go-ahead after the studio’s approval of a $30 million budget and the confirmation of cooperation from the Navy.
       HR production charts on 6 Jun 1989 stated that shooting began 3 Apr 1989 in Los Angeles and San Diego. A 28 Apr 1989 HR news item reported that a shoot in Port Angeles, Washington, was relocated because the weather was not stormy enough, and the crew ironically moved to Southern California to capture a more dramatic climate. Most of the film’s military action scenes, such as Ryan’s transition from helicopter to submarine and the explosion of S.S.N. Konovalov , were completed in the Pacific Northwest. The HR news item noted that the sequences were filmed using the U.S. military’s attack class nuclear submarine, U.S.S. Houston , the missile frigate Reuben James and two SH3 Navy Sea King helicopters. According to HR , the success of Top Gun (1986, see entry) led to an acceleration of Navy recruitment. The military was eager to repeat the same phenomenon by cooperating on The Hunt for Red October , and, as noted in a 25 Jun 1989 Long Beach Press Telegram article, Paramount was only charged for the reimbursement of operational costs. The article reported that Paramount had budgeted $200,000 for the Navy’s expenses, and noted Houston , alone, cost $400 per hour to operate. On 14 Jun 1989, Houston became entangled with a tugboat, killing one of the boat’s crewmen, but, according to Long Beach Press Telegram , both Paramount and the Navy claimed that the accident was unrelated to the production of the film.
       Along with employing real military vessels, more than $1 million was spent on a 500-foot mock-up of a Russian submarine, as reported in a 25 Feb 1990 NYT article. According to director John McTiernan, the submarine was not an exact replica. While Russian submarines surface only slightly, the Red October mock-up sat high in the water so filmmakers could convey the magnitude of the ship and shoot scenes on the deck, such as the sequence when Red October crew members abandon the boat. Interiors of Red October and U.S.S. Dallas were shot on 50-foot mock-ups on sound stages, suspended on hydraulic gimbals, which simulated the tilting of the submarines. The underwater sequences were created by computer-operated models because, McTiernan explained to NYT , the visibility of submerged cameras was ineffectual for capturing the length of a submarine and the Navy was unwilling to allow its vessels to navigate close enough to each other to portray them in the same shot.
       By the time of the film’s release, the novel was a bestseller. Various contemporary news sources, including LAT on 1 Jun 1986, noted that President Reagan’s public endorsement of the novel as “the perfect yarn” and Clancy’s subsequent visit to the White House contributed to the book’s popularity. HR on 18 Mar 1991 and NYT on 25 Feb 1990 noted the filmmakers were concerned about portraying the Cold War during a time of peace and while radical changes in the Soviet regime, such as “perestoika” and “glasnost,” were taking shape. According to McTiernan in NYT , this paradox was addressed throughout the film, starting with the written prologue at the opening, which states: "In November of 1984, shortly before Gorbachev came to power, a Typhoon-class Soviet sub surfaced just south of the Grand Banks. It then sank in deep water, apparently suffering a radiation problem. Unconfirmed reports indicated some of the crew were rescued. But according to repeated statements by both Soviet and American governments, nothing of what you are about to see... ever happened." McTiernan pointed out that this introductory “message” was an intentional device to inform the audience that actions in the film happened before Gorbachev’s rule. McTiernan also noted that the movie concludes with Ramius telling Ryan he hopes “some good will come out” of the incidents that transpired, foreshadowing the changes that would soon occur during Gorbachev’s rise to power. According to McTiernan, audience research from test screenings proved viewers understood the film was promoting peace, not contention, between the United States and the Soviet Union.
       A week before the film’s release, the Soviet newspaper Izvestia released confirmation of previously unverified reports describing a mutiny on a Russian anti-submarine destroyer in Nov 1975. These reports had provided the basis for Clancy’s novel. A HR article on 28 Feb 1990 stated that the Soviet military confirmed its chief officer, Valery Sablin, was brought to trial and executed for capturing the destroyer Storozhevoy in 1975. Sablin navigated the destroyer toward Sweden before it was reclaimed. Although it is unclear if Sablin intended to defect, as Ramius did in The Hunt for Red October , his motives were portrayed by Izvestia as political. A 12 Mar 1990 Time news item suggests that Sablin may have ultimately been headed toward Leningrad to demand reforms, and HR quotes Sablin as saying his motive was “to declare the ship independent of the Communist Party and state control.” While Clancy’s story was provided with increased legitimacy by the report from Izvestia , the author maintained that his work was fictional, as noted in Time .
              The film's plot is similar to that of the novel. According to McTiernan in the 18 Mar 1991 NYT article, some liberties were taken to portray Ramius as a more sympathetic character and to give the film increased action cinematically. In the climax of the novel, Ramius uses Red October to ram into Konovalov , killing at least one hundred men aboard. Although Konovalov is threatening Red October , and Ramius’s act could be seen as self-defense, McTiernan changed the story so that Konovalov is destroyed by its own missile, due its captain’s folly. The scene in which Ryan, Mancuso and their team enter Red October and navigate it through a missile strike was added to the plot to convey what McTiernan described as “a little bit of ‘Indiana Jones.’” The casting of two black actors, James Earl Jones as “Admiral Greer” and Courtney B. Vance as “Seaman Jones” diverged from the novel, where neither character is black. McTiernan noted that Jones not only encapsulated the stern yet warm qualities of the character, but also represented a greater theme in the film of “immigration and integration.”
              A 6 Mar 1990 WSJ news item reported that The Hunt for Red October grossed $17.2 million its opening weekend. According to HR on 18 Mar 1991, the film became one of the top-grossing releases of 1990, earning $120 million domestically. A HR article on 7 Mar 1990 reported that although Paramount denied published speculation that they spent nearly $15 million on publicity, the campaign to launch the film was extensive, including preview trailers starting in Jan 1990, billboards and other public media that was intentionally mysterious and devoid of submarine images to build suspense. The Hunt for Red October was the first film to be launched during a Super Bowl commercial spot and the film was advertised on a double-page spread in the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated , reaching 45 million readers. In the week prior to release, 15-second commercial spots during primetime television programming projected messages such as “The Hunt Begins Tomorrow.”
       Paramount’s decision to release the film in Mar 1990 was not well regarded by the filmmakers, who feared it would put them out of standing for Academy Award nominations, but Paramount president Barry London contested that another Connery film, Family Business (1989, see entry) was set to be released before Christmas, the favored release period for Academy Award consideration, and this would create a conflict for audiences. Although The Hunt for Red October was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Film Editing, for Dennis Virkler and John Wright, Sound, for Don Bassman, Richard Overton, Kevin F. Cleary, and Richard Bryce Goodman, and Sound Effects Editing, for Cecelia Hall and George Watters II, Neufeld argued in the HR article on 18 Mar 1991 that the film would have received greater recognition if it had been released later in the year. The film won an Academy Award for Sound Effects Editing.



Academic Network Georgia Institute of Technology; student: Christopher Graham Rhodes; Advisor: Vinicius Navarro. sbc Jan 2011 More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
2 May 1989.
---
Hollywood Reporter
28 Apr 1989
p. 28.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Jun 1989.
---
Hollywood Reporter
26 Feb 1990
p. 24, 35.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Feb 1990.
---
Hollywood Reporter
7 Mar 1990
p. 1, 29.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Mar 1991
pp. 12-13, 22-23.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Feb 1993.
---
LB Press Telegram
25 Jun 1989.
---
LB Press Telegram
4 Mar 1990.
---
Los Angeles Times
1 Jun 1986.
---
Los Angeles Times
21 Sep 1988
p. 1, 4-5.
Los Angeles Times
2 Mar 1990
p. 1.
New York Times
17 Mar 1989.
---
New York Times
25 Feb 1990
p. 15, 18.
New York Times
2 Mar 1990
p. 13.
Time
12 Mar 1990
p. 81.
Variety
28 Feb 1990
p. 24, 28.
WSJ
6 Mar 1990
p. 8.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Red October officers and crew
Red October officers and crew
Red October officers and crew
Konovalov officers and crew
Dallas officers and crew:
Red October officers and crew:
Konovalov officers and crew:
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
A Mace Neufeld/Jerry Sherlock Production
A John McTiernan Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dir, 2d unit
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
1st asst dir, 2d unit
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Exec prod
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Dir of photog, 2d unit
Cam op
1st asst photog
2d asst photog
2d asst photog
Asst photog, 2d unit
Asst photog, 2d unit
Chief lighting tech
Asst chief lighting tech
Asst chief lighting tech
1st company grip
2d company grip
Dolly grip
Still photog
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Art dir
Art dir
Art dir
Graphic artist
FILM EDITORS
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Apprentice film ed
Negative cutting
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Leadperson
Const coord
Const foreman
Prop person
Prop person
Paint foreperson
COSTUMES
Ward supv
MUSIC
Mus ed
Mus editing
Mus scoring mixer
SOUND
Prod sd mixer
Boom op
Cable person
Supv sd ed
Supv sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Supv ADR ed
ADR ed
Supv foley ed
Foley ed
Foley ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Apprentice sd ed
Addl sd eff created by
Addl sd eff created by
Addl sd eff created by
Tech sd consultant
Tech sd consultant
Foley artist
Foley artist
Foley mixer
ADR mixer
Supv re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Dolby stereo consultant
VISUAL EFFECTS
Visual eff supv
Supv sd ed
Titles and opticals by
Spec eff coord
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec eff asst
Spec visual eff prod at
A Division of LucasArts Entertainment
Visual eff prod, ILM
Dir of photog, ILM
Assoc eff supv, ILM
Supv stage tech, ILM
Gaffer, ILM
Visual eff art dir, ILM
Visual eff art dir, ILM
Opt photog supv, ILM
Computer graphics supv, ILM
Visual eff ed, ILM
Supv modelmaker, ILM
Exec in charge of prod, ILM
Exec in charge of post prod, ILM
Gen mgr, ILM
Project mgr, ILM
Shooting coord, ILM
Visual eff coord, ILM
Assoc eff prod, ILM
Visual eff cam, ILM
Visual eff cam, ILM
Cam asst, ILM
Cam asst, ILM
Cam asst, ILM
Cam asst, ILM
Cam asst, ILM
Best boy, ILM
Best boy, ILM
Stage tech, ILM
Stage tech, ILM
Stage tech, ILM
Stage tech, ILM
Stage tech, ILM
Stage tech, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt line-up, ILM
Opt cam op, ILM
Opt cam op, ILM
Opt cam op, ILM
Opt cam op, ILM
Opt processing, ILM
Opt processing, ILM
Rotoscoper, ILM
Rotoscoper, ILM
Rotoscoper, ILM
Rotoscoper, ILM
Anim eff cam, ILM
Anim eff cam, ILM
Anim eff cam, ILM
Anim eff cam, ILM
Asst ed, ILM
Asst ed, ILM
Negative cutter, ILM
Negative cutter, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Computer graphics, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Modelmaker, ILM
Transportation capt, ILM
Cinetechnician, ILM
Cinetechnician, ILM
Cinetechnician, ILM
Cinetechnician, ILM
Prod asst, ILM
Prod asst, ILM
Undersea submarines created by
Visual eff consultant, Boss Film Corporation
Visual eff art dir, Boss Film Corporation
Visual eff dir of photog, Boss Film Corporation
Model shop supv, Boss Film Corporation
Model maker, Boss Film Corporation
Model maker, Boss Film Corporation
Model maker, Boss Film Corporation
Model maker, Boss Film Corporation
Model maker, Boss Film Corporation
Key miniature mechanisms, Boss Film Corporation
Mechanisms, Boss Film Corporation
Mechanisms, Boss Film Corporation
Painter, Boss Film Corporation
Sculptor, Boss Film Corporation
Prod asst, Boss Film Corporation
Prod asst, Boss Film Corporation
Prod asst, Boss Film Corporation
Prod asst, Boss Film Corporation
Russian Bear bomber by
River seq by
Supv, The Chandler Group
Prod, The Chandler Group
Op, The Chandler Group
Op, The Chandler Group
Opt supv, The Chandler Group
Opt coord, The Chandler Group
Opt coord, The Chandler Group
Ed, The Chandler Group
Line-up, The Chandler Group
Processor, The Chandler Group
Video and graphic displays by
Video and graphic displays by, Video Image
Video and graphic displays by, Video Image
Video and graphic displays by, Video Image
Video and graphic displays by, Video Image
Video graphics supv
Video image crew
Video image crew
Video image crew
Video image crew
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Makeup artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Scr supv
Loc mgr
Loc mgr
Prod accountant
Asst prod accountant
Prod office coord
Asst prod coord
Asst to Mr. McTiernan
Asst to Mr. Neufeld
Asst to Mr. DeWaay
Asst to Mr. Ferguson
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Unit pub
Tech adv, 2d unit
Government relations
Prod supv, 2d unit
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col timer
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy (Annapolis, 1984).
AUTHOR
SONGS
"The Anthem of the Soviet Union," music by A. V. Aleksandrov, text by G. A. El-Reghistan & S. V. Mikhalkov
"Payoff," by Basil Poledouris, courtesy of Orion Pictures Corp.
DETAILS
Release Date:
2 March 1990
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 2 March 1990
Copyright Claimant:
Paramount Pictures Corporation
Copyright Date:
5 April 1990
Copyright Number:
PA456686
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Technicolor®
Lenses/Prints
Filmed in Panavision® with Panavision cameras & lenses
Duration(in mins):
134
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
29896
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Soviet submarine captain, Marko Ramius, departs on a mission from the Polijarny Inlet near Murmansk, Russia. CIA analyst, Jack Ryan, flies from London to Washington, D.C., where he presents Deputy Director of Intelligence Admiral Greer with recently obtained British Intelligence photographs of the Russian submarine Red October , which is notably larger than standard typhoon class submarines. Ryan explains that the ship’s captain, Ramius, has vast experience, political connections, and notoriety among his trainees as “The Vilnius Schoolmaster.” Ryan expresses concern about the submarine’s mysterious doors, and when he requests top secret clearance to consult with Skip Tyler, a former U.S. submariner, Greer immediately arranges for the meeting, telling Ryan that a satellite captured images of Red October leaving Polijarny that morning. Meanwhile, the sonar of submarine U.S.S. Dallas detects Red October 100 miles northwest of Polijarny. Aboard Red October , Ramius is infuriated by the intrusion of KGB agent, Ivan Putin, who contemptuously reads from a book belonging to Ramius’s deceased wife before providing Ramius with the key to the safe containing official orders of their ... +


Soviet submarine captain, Marko Ramius, departs on a mission from the Polijarny Inlet near Murmansk, Russia. CIA analyst, Jack Ryan, flies from London to Washington, D.C., where he presents Deputy Director of Intelligence Admiral Greer with recently obtained British Intelligence photographs of the Russian submarine Red October , which is notably larger than standard typhoon class submarines. Ryan explains that the ship’s captain, Ramius, has vast experience, political connections, and notoriety among his trainees as “The Vilnius Schoolmaster.” Ryan expresses concern about the submarine’s mysterious doors, and when he requests top secret clearance to consult with Skip Tyler, a former U.S. submariner, Greer immediately arranges for the meeting, telling Ryan that a satellite captured images of Red October leaving Polijarny that morning. Meanwhile, the sonar of submarine U.S.S. Dallas detects Red October 100 miles northwest of Polijarny. Aboard Red October , Ramius is infuriated by the intrusion of KGB agent, Ivan Putin, who contemptuously reads from a book belonging to Ramius’s deceased wife before providing Ramius with the key to the safe containing official orders of their mission. The document gives instructions for a standard training exercise with Soviet submarine S.S.N. Konovalov , commanded by Ramius’s former student, Captain Tupolev, and then a return voyage to Polijarny. As Putin goes to inform the crew, Ramius breaks his neck, burns the orders, and replaces them with forged copies while calling Dr. Petrov to report Putin’s death as an accident. At a naval shipyard in Patuxent, Maryland, Ryan meets with Tyler and shows him the photographs. Tyler theorizes that Red October ’s doors indicate its Caterpillar drive, a propulsion system that makes the submarine nearly undetectable by sonar and would enable the Soviets to launch nuclear warheads off of the U.S. coastline without warning. Back aboard Red October , Dr. Petrov tells Ramius that the mission cannot continue without a political officer, but Ramius pulls rank and informs him that their mission will go on. Calling Loginov, the cook’s assistant, as a witness, Ramius takes Putin’s missile keys. Although Dr. Petrov argues that the incident should be reported, Captain Borodin informs him that their mission has been ordered for radio silence. Meanwhile, Dallas identifies the vessel as a previously unrecorded model of Soviet submarine, and Captain Bart Mancuso orders his crew to follow it closely. Dallas ’s Seaman Jones explains to his trainee that they will not be detected if they stay in the submarine’s baffles, while Red October crewmen inform Ramius that their sonar and surface scopes are clear of contacts. Ramius then announces to his crew that the Soviets have once again gained an advantage over their adversary and orders the silent drive of the Caterpillar to be engaged. He tells them that they will slip past their own fleet and American patrols to conduct missile drills off the coast of New York, making historical advances for their country. As the crew of Red October sings the Soviet anthem and the Caterpillar engages, the submarine disappears from Dallas ’s sonar. Red October then detects Dallas , but Ramius is pleased to learn that it does not change its course in recognition of their ship, assuring him that their invisibility has proven successful. In Moscow, Chairman of the Red Fleet, Admiral Padorin, receives a letter from Ramius and spills his tea in shock. Meanwhile, Ryan is urgently called back to Washington and Greer informs him about the incident in Polijarny. Before Ryan can share Tyler’s theory, Greer concludes that Red October ’s doors are evidence of a silent propulsion system, and gives Ryan a report stating the Soviets recently engaged their entire fleet of submarines. Ryan briefs U.S. National Security Advisor, Jeffrey Pelt, and his associates about Red October ’s Caterpillar drive and adds that fifty-eight Soviet nuclear submarines are headed toward the Atlantic at high speed. When Greer suggests that the deployment is an exercise, a committee member reveals intelligence that Ramius’s letter to Admiral Padorin resulted in orders from Premier Chernenko for the Soviet fleet to sink Red October . The committee concludes that Ramius is intent on attacking the United States, but Ryan’s knowledge of Ramius’s personal history leads him to an alternate theory. Due to the date of Ramius’s conquest of Red October , which marks the one-year anniversary of his wife’s death, his Lithuanian birthright, and his intimacy with the Soviet officers he trained, Ryan believes that Ramius and his trusted associates are on mission toward America to defect. Learning that Red October will be in a position to attack in four days, Pelt adjourns the meeting. When Ryan privately suggests to Pelt that detaining Red October will allow the U.S. to infiltrate the secret engineering of the Caterpillar drive, Pelt gives Ryan three days to make contact with Ramius and prove this theory. Aboard Konovalov , Captain Tupolev orders his crew to head toward Red October at full speed. At an officer's dinner on Red October , Ramius tells his team that he revealed their intent to defect in a letter to Padorin. They conclude they are doomed, but Ramius contends that their real threat is the Americans. In the North Atlantic, Ryan arrives on U.S.S. Enterprise . Meanwhile, on Dallas , Seaman Jones brings Captain Mancuso a recording of Red October just after it disappeared from their sonar. When played at a rapid speed, the sounds of seismic activity provide a tool to detect the Caterpillar drive. Based on the alignment of Red October ’s previous coordinates and the location of the Soviet fleet, Jones proposes that Red October is headed toward Thor’s Twins, an underwater canyon, on its way to Iceland. Aboard Enterprise , Ryan explains his plan to the ship’s admirals and they express concern about the feasibility of capturing Red October . As Red October passes Thor’s Twins, Ramius orders his crew to navigate at a dangerously rapid speed and the Caterpillar becomes damaged. Although the submarine will no longer run silent, Ramius commands the mission to continue with normal propulsion. In Washington, D.C., Pelt grills the Soviet Ambassador about his country’s deployment of their fleet, but the ambassador claims that Red October is missing and a massive rescue operation is necessary because Russian high-level party officials have sons aboard. When Pelt offers to assist, however, the ambassador declines. South of Iceland, Red October narrowly diverts a torpedo fired by Soviet aircraft and the ship’s engineer reports that the Caterpillar was sabotaged by a crewmember. After learning that Russian submarines have been stationed along the east coast of America, Ryan discovers that Dallas has marked sounds of seismic activity and takes a helicopter to the submarine, hoping that they have found Red October . Meanwhile, Jones detects the Russians directly below Dallas . On Red October , Borodin informs Ramius that the Caterpillar is running again, but notes that the crew is afraid of the saboteur and Ramius responds that this will ultimately be useful. As Borodin tells Ramius about his plans for life in America, Dallas stops her engines to avoid detection but narrowly misses a collision with Red October . Attempting to rendezvous with Dallas in a storm, Ryan is lowered from the helicopter, falls into the ocean and is pulled aboard by a diver. Meanwhile, the Soviet ambassador confesses to Pelt that his initial report was inaccurate. He claims that Ramius’s letter to Putin stated his intention to fire missiles at the U.S. and requests assistance in killing Ramius. On Dallas , Ryan explains his theory about Ramius to Captain Mancuso, but Mancuso receives orders to prevent Red October from nearing America with any necessary force. As Dallas locks its weapons on Red October , Ryan tells Mancuso that Russia concocted the story of Ramius’s insanity to provoke the U.S., ensuring that Ramius will be killed and unable to share military secrets after defecting. Although Mancuso is unreceptive, Ryan proves his knowledge of Ramius’s operations by accurately predicting Red October ’s next maneuver and Mancuso orders the engines of Dallas stopped, making the submarine’s position known to Red October . Although Dallas opens its torpedo doors and is ready to fire, Ramius does not order a counter attack. Following Red October ’s lead, Dallas heads to periscope depth and the submarines view each other at the ocean’s surface. Ryan and Mancusco communicate with Ramius through Morse code and Ramius acknowledges that it is not his intention to attack the U.S. Ryan warns Ramius against approaching the U.S., then gives him alternative coordinates for a safe place to defect at the Laurentian Abyssal. En route, Red October suffers a radiation leak as the result of sabotage, and Ramius decides to surface and evacuate the crew. As the crewmembers board life rafts, an American frigate appears and warns Red October against submerging. Ramius tells Dr. Petrov to depart with the crewmembers, and that he will submerge Red October with his officers to scuttle the ship and prevent enemy capture. Petrov resolves that Ramius is a hero for his sacrifice, and the crew watches as a torpedo is dropped onto Red October from an American helicopter. Before the torpedo hits Red October , however, Admiral Greer detonates it, ordering the Commander to report the missile hit the submarine’s hull and to overlook his actions. Greer then sends word to Dallas to launch their Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle and Mancuso, Ryan, Jones and two officers head toward Red October . Upon docking the Russian submarine, the men are met by cold stares, and Ramius demands to know why a torpedo was launched despite their agreement to meet in safety. Ryan contends that the torpedo was necessary to provide an illusion for Red October ’s crew that the ship was attacked, and he assures Ramius that his men will be rescued. When Ryan admits that he did not know for certain that Red October ’s reactor accident was staged, but that it seemed logical, Ramius surrenders the submarine and requests asylum. As Mancuso and Ramius shake hands, they hear a torpedo pass, and Jones determines that it is Russian. When Borodin identifies the attacker as Konovalov , Ramius instructs Ryan to steer the submarine directly into the path of the oncoming torpedo. By rapidly closing the distance to the torpedo, Red October contacts the missile before it can arm itself, and it does not strike the submarine. A Red October crewmember then fires a gun at the men, fatally wounding Borodin. When Ramius departs with Ryan to find the crewman before he can detonate their missiles and incinerate the ship, Mancuso gives Ramius his handgun for defense, but Ramius is soon injured and Ryan goes after the crewmember alone. Meanwhile, Konovalov fires again at Red October , but Dallas intervenes and temporarily redirects the torpedo. Dodging Dallas ’s countermeasures, the torpedo surfaces, and Red October ’s crewmembers watch from aboard a rescue ship, assuming that Ramius is fighting the Americans. Ryan finds Loginov, the cook’s assistant, who attempts to destroy Red October by crossing circuit wires, and shoots him dead. Konovalov 's torpedo reacquires coordinates and closes in on its target, but, under Mancuso’s orders, Red October dodges the missile and it hits Konovalov . Witnessing the explosion, Red October crewmembers believe their ship has been destroyed. Back in Washington, D.C., Pelt reports with feigned regret the loss of Red October to the Soviet Ambassador, but says that the crewmembers will be returned home safely. When the ambassador mentions that they have lost track of another submarine, Konovalov , he is ashamed to pursue the matter further. As Red October heads up Penobscot River in Maine to hide from satellite detection, Ramius admits that the submarine was built to strike America without warning and hopes its capture will provoke positive change. When Ramius quotes Christopher Columbus’s contention that the sea brings man new hope while he dreams of home, Ryan welcomes him to the “New World.” +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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