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Crimson Tide Film

Updated on August 10, 2015

Crimson Tide is a film that talks about political unrest in the Russian Federation, where Vladimir Radchenko takes over a nuclear missile installation. Radchenko was the leader or the Russian Ultranationalist Party who formed his own military to cause a revolt in Russia. As a result Radchenko declared nuclear war if either governments of America or Russia interferes. The scene takes place onboard the USS Alabama, an American submarine. The plot of this film is about two strong willed officers, the new executive officer, Lieutenant Commander Ron Hunter and the Captain Frank Ramsey, the commanding officer. In this film there is a clash of leadership between the commanding officer and the executive officer. The executive officer’s approach to the situation was well reserved, who wanted to get to the bottom of how to solve this incident in the most resourceful way as possible. On the other hand the commanding officer’s approach was without thought and was based on what he felt was true and not what was profound.

The USS Alabama received an Emergency Action Message (E.A.M) ordering them to launch missile attacks on Russia. This action was based on satellite information that the Russian missiles were being fueled in preparation to be launched. Before the USS Alabama could launch, a second Emergency Action Message (E.A.M) was sent but communication was severed by an attack from a Russian submarine, which was faithful in allegiance to Radchenko, thus preventing a complete message being sent to the USS Alabama. From this point on in the film, a break down in the chain of command transpires causing chaos on board. When there is a breakdown in leadership eventually separation follows. This is what happened which caused the crew to choose their alliance, thus creating mutiny on board the USS Alabama.

Captain Ramsey chose to adhere to the first message received rather than the second incomplete message while Lieutenant Commander Hunter did not concur with just the first message and wanted to proceed to find out if the second message was for them to standby. An argument ensued which continued back and forth in front of the crew which in my opinion I think should never have happened. When there is a break down in the command structure the substructure will collapse as well. Lieutenant Commander Hunter assumed command and ordered the crew to lock the Captain in his quarters. The Captain was later freed by crew loyal to him, intern the Captain assumed command locked up Lieutenant Commander Hunter. The Captain then continued on his quest to launch the missiles he was ordered to launch, or so he thought. The Lieutenant Commander was later freed by crew who was loyal to him, he continued in his bid to prevent the Captain from launching these missiles. Finally the communication was restored and the complete message was able to be deciphered. The message read for the launch to be aborted because Radchenko’s rebellion was subdued. At the end of it all after returning to base, Captain Ramsey and Lieutenant Commander Hunter had to appear before a naval tribunal to give an answer for their actions. The Tribunal’s finding was that both officers were at the same time right and wrong, if there is such a thing, and Lieutenant Commander Hunter’s actions were lawfully right. Captain Ramsey recommended to the tribunal that Lieutenant Commander Hunter be promoted and be given command of his own sub. He himself was allowed to retire early to keep his reputation. In this film the lesson learnt is that leadership is only as strong as its substructure and every part of the ship is critical to the stability of that ship. Every part of the ship has a function and every crew member has a job. Overall it was an enjoyable film to watch.

4 stars for Crimson Tide Film


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