June 6, 2008
Review - " Rambo " (on DVD) - By Roland Hansen
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In 2006, at the age of sixty, Sylvester Stallone reanimated
his undead Rocky franchise with a film he called simply
Rocky Balboa, eschewing any numerical reference. Now
the sexagenarian has chosen to dredge up another
character from his glory days that of John Rambo, last
encountered in the previous century in a little film called
…. Ummmm …. Rambo III. So the latest outing would have
been "Rambo IV," if the producers decided to just call it...
dramatic pause... Rambo.
Now, I'm going to tell you in case you aren't already clued in that Rambo movies are all about body count. If you go to a
movie with "Rambo" in the title expecting constraint and character development you need to have your head examined. The
one exception to this was the first in the series “First Blood”. In “First Blood” John Rambo showed restraint. He went out of
his way to NOT kill. But then since it doesn’t have Rambo in the title this can be overlooked.
Now a secluded snake capturer, Vietnam veteran John Rambo (Sylvester Stallone) is asked to deliver a group of Christian
human rights missionaries, led by Michael Burnett (Paul Schulze) and Sarah Miller (Julie Benz), from his current home in
Thailand to the persecuted people of Burma.
Knowing that Burma is a war zone under the vicious wrath of an unruly and corrupt army, Rambo initially refuses to assist
the anxious Americans. However, after some minor convincing by the pretty Sarah, Rambo agrees to guide the missionaries
on their quest to aid the needy.
When the good guys (and gal) are inevitably captured by the bad guys, Rambo joins a set of mercenaries to vie with the
Burmese army and rescue the innocent. The result is a relentless bloodbath. Throughout the film, intestines are spilled,
limbs are blown off, heads are staked, and bodies are converted to pink mist via land mines, innocent civilians are shot,
burned, hanged, and raped without remorse.
After all, Rambo’s brutal violence is what makes it a suitable fourth chapter to the First Blood series. The Rambo motion
pictures are all about pure unadulterated action fit for men who feed on carnage. As Rambo states, “I don’t kill for my
country; I kill for myself.”
Paul Schulze as Michael Burnett, who appears to be either
Sarah's husband or boyfriend and is unequivocally the leader
of the missionary band. Mr. Schulze excels at portraying
sniveling do-gooders who believe in their hearts that violence
has no place in a sane world, and then is forced to rethink his
strategies in light of the world's insanity.
"When you're pushed, killin's as easy as breathin'."
In the end “Rambo” is an action packed, high body count,
high caliber weapon slaughter. Although this time he manages
a lot of action without the preaching of Rambo 2 & 3.