The story is actually decent as it tells about a soldier with trauma from the Vietnam war that takes on the bastards who use their power on weaker people in his own country. The breakdown sequence where John Rambo revisits his nightmares for the last seven years is a powerful moment seldom seen in an action movie and Brian Dennehy is perfectly cast as a sheriff from hell.
Simple, but palpable; it retains a consistent base tension and manages to evoke just enough beyond the sum of its parts to fit into a political ethos the likes of which was established by 'Platoon', 'Apocalypse, Now' and other such films. Stallone's ending monologue basically says all that the film wants to get across. It's a shame that Rambo came to typify violent, masculine fantasy in films.
In Portugal this is called "Rambo" and the sequels "Rambo II", "Rambo III" etc.. So I mistook the 2008 Rambo for this. And it's about all I have to say about Rambo. I was very surprised to see what seems to me like a Rambo rehabilitation. I still dislike it a lot. As a kid I did not like it and the aversion only grew.
Re-watched for the first time after twenty years. Quite a surprise ! Another strong feature for the Australian Ted Kocheff, maybe even better than "Wake in Fright". Stallone gives a heavy-hearted-one-of-a-kind performance. Explosive cocktail of action and clever directing like the 1980s could give you (think Friedkin for instance).
Un actionner contemplatif, c'est quand même fou. A la fois survival de grande qualité, avec ce côté artisanal qui fait tout le charme; Et puis à côté des décors somptueux, dans des montagnes je-ne-sais-où. Stallone incarne bien ce gaillard, ancien béret vert sans trop d'esprit que la guerre a brisé, devenu rejeton de l'Amérique. Juste la fin déçoit, avec la surenchère d'explosions inutile.
An incredibly underrated Stallone film, arguably the best he ever did. Sure Rocky contributed the montage and Mr. T and all that jazz, but this is an interesting film about war, and the long term effects. Stallone plays fantastically in this, and I highly recommend this for all. Also, much better than the other Rambo films.
I put off watching this because I hated the latest Rambo, but here Stallone's character has substance, and the growing tension between his ex-vietnam vet and a small town police department is played out effectively, the action being thrilling and well directed, and John Rambo being the likable anti-hero pulled into a bad situation. His ending monologue where he breaks down in front of his commander is also touching.
Re-view. After like nearly 30 years. American masterpiece. I'm double featuring this with Bob Clark's DEATHDREAM for sure. Yes, this is big American camera-action. It's also radical commentary on the effects of Vietnam. And highly entertaining. Part 2 was my childhood favorite (and almost for certain a lesser film). Regardless, sorry people, I'm sticking with John Rambo. He has no other option except to h(a)unt you.
"Dey drew first blood. Not me." The most immoral thing we heard from teachers in elementary school was that they didn't care who started. John Rambo in 1982 is by far the most likeable, back-to-basics, troubled, credibly megasuper hero I know apart from Bourne. This is as much about disrespect, degradation, war traumatization, and aloneness as it is about action. Yet the action is excellent. A special movie. 8/10.