The following review was written by guest contributor Sam.
Directed, written, produced and starring Sylvester Stallone, Rambo makes for an interesting movie in its own right, but there’s a handsome benefit in having seen the previous movies in the series before diving in here.
In this newest flick, we find Rambo living in Thailand, catching snakes to put in an arena (whether its for the entertainers or gamblers, we don’t know). A missionary group arrives seeking to bring Jesus to the Burmese, and asks him for an escort. Rambo tells them to piss off, but the pretty face of the group steps in (Julie Benz), ultimately convincing him to take the job. After nearly getting caught by pirates, Rambo reluctantly watches them leave the boat. Rambo suspects something is up and after the missionaries are captured by the locals, he knows something is up. He partners with militiamen to form a rescue party, the blood bath follows.
Modern films can have a lot of violence, but this isn’t your grandmother’s Rambo. This movie is more realistic and there are a lot of fast-paced deaths- blink and you miss it. One in particular is a decapitation by arrow which is very satisfying.
The movie isn’t perfect, sometimes the deaths are so quick that they seem comedic. Characters, including Rambo, are never left to develop; we’re never clear as to why Rambo came to be in that place and the rest of the cast seems like a bunch of crash test dummies. Since this is the first Rambo film since 1988 it might come across as foreign to new audiences. I’ll be damned if I didn’t love the last 45 minutes of the film but the end seems anticlimactic – as if they didn’t have the budget to continue after all the explosions they put into the film.
Watch this movie. It’s not perfect but it’s definitely viewable by any action film lover.