Rambo Review

by Ed Lau on March 4, 2008

Rambo, John Rambo, Rambo IV, Rambo 4, Sylvester Stallone

Twenty-five or so years ago, there was a movie called Rambo, which was basically Sylvester Stallone kicking ass. It wasn’t actually a bad movie. In fact, Rambo: First Blood was actually quite a good film but subsequent lame sequels reduced the title character, John Rambo, to a rather hilarious caricature of himself much like the tenth or eleventh Nightmare on Elm Street or Friday the 13th films. And so, you’ll have to forgive me if I wasn’t expecting too much from a new Rambo movie, especially with Sly now exceeding the sixty-years old mark. Stallone seems to be reviving the characters that made him famous, as we saw with Rocky Balboa earlier.

I watched this with low expectations but I came out quite surprised. Of course, it isn’t going to win any awards or jog your brain cells but, well, it isn’t as bad as you might think. Like Rocky Balboa, Rambo doesn’t achieve the classic status of Rocky or Rambo but it is a perfectly enjoyable movie.

Rambo, John Rambo, Rambo IV, Rambo 4, Sylvester Stallone

The actual story in the script is thin and forgettable. John Rambo has been living in Thailand for the last 20 years, fishing with a bow, catching cobras and dabbling in blacksmithing for some reason. Apparently he’s become some sort of authority on the river system which brings a group of missionaries to hire him to bring them into war-torn Burma. Their leader, played by the guy that was Ryan Chappelle on 24, fails to convince Rambo since they’re not bringing any weapons into what is essentially a war zone but a missionary named Sarah (Julie Benz) manages to get him to drive them down the river.

They arrive at a village where they administer aid but are quickly either killed or captured by the bloodthirsty Burmese army, who slaughter men, women and children as they destroy the village. These guys are such jackasses that I’m sure everyone in the audience will cheer when they get disemboweled…hard.

Rambo, John Rambo, Rambo IV, Rambo 4, Sylvester Stallone

And they do…brutally and often. Let me emphasis just how badly Rambo and his friends (oh, right, there are some hired mercenaries that tag along with Rambo but they’re little more than an afterthought that adds some crappy singing and swearing) just totally wreck the Burmese army. They rain so much .50 caliber death on these guys. The violence is absolutely gruesome and definitely not for the faint of heart but I don’t know about you but I’m cheering every time I see one of those asses get a new hole ripped through them.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a good movie but it just isn’t a bad one. I mean, don’t get me started with why on earth the sniper would lug around a M82A1A when he needs to move around so much or why the heck these missionaries are going where they KNOW they’re going to get screwed but watching Rambo totally destroy a whole batalion is quite a bit of fun.

The plot is thin but at least it doesn’t try to be more than it actually is. In fact, you could almost credit the movie with keeping it simple rather than throwing too many confusing twists or trying to be too complicated. This is a movie that knows it’s just a bunch of massive guns and senseless violence and, well, anytime you see such abhorrent people get some .50 caliber lovin’, it can’t be that bad.

Verdict: 6.5 out of 10

in Entertainment

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike Huang March 6, 2008 at 12:43 am

I don’t think I’ve watched action movies in the theaters for a while now…:(



Ian March 6, 2008 at 5:16 pm

I’m sure I can live without seeing Rambo remade. All I can think is Sly Stallone must have desperately needed cash, or limelight, or both.


Derek March 7, 2008 at 5:25 am

Stalone has at least said that this will be the last one e does. Good, becuase it’s getting a bit silly at his age.


Hiky March 8, 2008 at 12:06 pm

He looks great….and always will…


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