This movie was….underwhelming to me. Especially this time watching it. For whatever reason I went into it remembering this movie being better at least in a different sense then what was in the film that I was given.
What I was given was a legendary Sylvester Stallone POW breakout sequel that was directed by George P Cosmatos (director of Tombstone and ) and written by Stallone and James Cameron (the legendary filmmaker who made Terminator 1 and 2, Aliens and you should know the rest). The cast I’ve also started to really love especially Richard Crena (from Summer Rental, the rest of the Rambo trilogy and Leviathan), Martin Kove (from the Karate Kid trilogy) and Charles Napier (from Silence of The Lambs, Married to The Mob, the ever underrated The Goods, etc) and more. The film does kick ass, however knowing Cameron’s involvement I suppose that it missed out on his variability?
I’m not going to tell you that Rambo First Blood Part II doesn’t have a s***t ton of awesome explosions and action movie insanity. HOWEVER (and I’m trying to contextualize this as I write this so I hope that I’m making sense) I feel that what a lot of other Cameron movies have over this is more of a natural approach to action VS how much more staged the action feels here.
An example of this I suppose would be something like in Terminator 2 where characters adapt to the action more naturally like the tiers of the Terminator club shoot out to the car chase. Maybe this is irrational complaining about not having the movie I want, BUT I feel that the transitions could have been smoothed out between action scenes a bit more, especially for James Cameron.
However I feel conflicted because the action scenes still do look very impressive on a technical more traditionally 80’s action movie explosive style style. I also know that I’m the minority in this and feel like a grumpy old man complaining about action/violence, but what can you do?
The following are spoilers, but I feel I wouldn’t want to see a Rambo film at all where Stallone didn’t blast a dude with an explosive tipped arrow which he does most awesomely. I also really applaud Stallone’s performance throughout as he takes the material very seriously and even has a great and surprisingly thoughtful monologue at the end. The ending song didn’t at all compare to the awesomeness of It’s A Long Road from the first one either.
Overall, upon revisiting it I found Rambo First Blood Part II to be surprisingly underwhelming and disappointing this time around. Despite it less fitting the Bro theme that I’m wanting to go with this month it really held up. That being said I’m really hoping that 3 winds up being better than this.
I feel I may be going around in circles in this, but to conclude this review, if you want to sink back a few beers while watching some awesome boom boom then this is for you, it just wasn’t for me.