These are the top 100 personal favorite films of mine. As my film collection and vocabulary grows, I'm sure this…
This time he's fighting for his life.
When former Green Beret John Rambo is harassed by local law enforcement and arrested for vagrancy, the Vietnam vet snaps, runs for the hills and rat-a-tat-tats his way into the action-movie hall of fame. Hounded by a relentless sheriff, Rambo employs heavy-handed guerilla tactics to shake the cops off his tail.
I kind of thought it would be a mindless action film where Sly goes around killing the bad guys in the jungle with his machine gun and that's about it. Like Predator, I guess, just without the Predator.
I was wrong. It's excellent. I found it very entertaining, and also quite sad. Sure, Rambo is this bad-ass, super elite soldier who can kill a man practically by looking at him with his wonky face, but I never realised there was a subtext quite so deep to it. The way the bent cops are almost enjoying hunting him down and killing him on "his own turf" if you like is obviously a subtle (maybe not so subtle, actually) allusion to how…
If you have any doubt as to whether Sylvester Stallone was the greatest action hero of his time, do yourself a favor and watch the brilliant, underrated, and unexpectedly nuanced First Blood.
I was first introduced to John Rambo when I was nine years old. My dad somehow thought that First Blood was suitable material for his kids, and so we watched, in varying levels of distress, as Rambo fashioned makeshift weapons and methodically eliminated soldier after soldier in increasingly brutal ways. And when we got to the part where he dug a bullet out of his own arm, we were just about ready to puke.
My dad, my little brother, and I have watched First Blood more than thirty…
Your daily reminder that Stallone movies never used to be cheesy, that 90-minute action movies are the best kind of action movie, that the Pacific Northwest is one of the most cinematic environments, that Jerry Goldsmith could do no wrong, that John Rambo is more-or-less a weaponized Frankenstein's monster created by Trautman, that Brian Dennehy's character has the name Will Teasle, that Stallone's body fat used to be 2.3%, that director Ted Kotcheff also made Weekend at Bernie's. That is all.
Sunday Morning Review.
God didn't make Rambo, I made him!
It's a crisp December night in a mountainous northern American town. You can see your breath in the air and taste the line flavor in the wind. Christmas lights sway from power lines and the soft glow of 80's style diners and shops are splashed across the streets. It's empty. Everyone is indoors.
And then John Rambo comes walking down the middle of the road with an M60.
Much like Die Hard, here is an action series that quickly came off the rails but is blessed with a near flawless first film. Rambo: First Blood was an unorthodox action film for the time because despite being a mentally unstable Vietnam…
Stallone is something else, isn't he? Let's be honest, the guy has a certain charisma, but he really can't act. But still he has given life to two iconic characters that are an unmistakable part of cinema history.
It is too easy to write this film off as a simplistic and ridiculous action film that spawned moronic sequels and launched a host of copycats that muddied the waters of the action genre in the eighties. It may have done all that, but this is also a very, very good film indeed.
This was my first watch as an 'adult' and while I didn't feel the energy I felt when I first saw it…
If you want some friendly advice, get a haircut and take a bath. You wouldn't get hassled so much.
One of the greatest action movies of all time. It's gritty, incredibly dark, has an air of realism and is still a very original film to this day. I say an "air of realism" because even though some things might be unrealistic when you think about them too much, the movie is made in such a way that pretty much anything John Rambo does comes off as totally possible. That's how you make an action movie, you don't just do the impossible and call it a day. You make the impossible seem possible and THEN call it a day.
A quintessential entry in the 1980s post-Vietnam films. I haven't seen this in decades, and I am amazed by (a) how well this holds up and (b) how good Stallone is.
First Blood is my favourite of those long forgotten American thrillers from the late 70's-80's that were almost always set in rural/blue collar/workin' man environments, like Pittsburgh, Philly, Michigan or Delaware.
It's also the most ridiculous.
But the balancing act that director Ted Kotcheff plays is remarkable, in that he maintains a brutal, macho realism while really tapping into Sylvester Stallone's ridiculous action potential - Resulting in one of the best, and most important american movies of the 1980's.
It's no surprise Kotcheff was also the man that brought us Wake in Fright, another film featuring an alienated man at the mercy of a vicious redneck mentality and also an unforgiving terrain. But this is no 'Redneck's are evil' flick.…
First Blood was violent - but it was surprising that it was rated R - I suppose that since there were a few f-bombs it deserved it... Todays violence with Walking Dead and contemporary films has warped my mind a bit - it is odd to see a movie like this with an R rating.
Stallone was John Rambo, vagrant and outlaw against the world in this film; he was strolling through town and after he learned his friend had died he was on his way out. A police officer who did not know what he was doing decides to escort Rambo out of town and tell him to not come back - and that is when all hell breaks…
I forgot how hard hitting this movie is. Those last 20 minutes or say are just heart breaking and tough to get through man.
Ex-Vietnam Veteran kicks arse at a small town Police station after being arrested for vagrancy and generally harassed without provocation. He escapes to the local hills and hunts down his pursuers amid the forested slopes.
Looking very dated now (which is to be expected, I guess) and it absolutely amazes me that Stallone ever managed to get an acting job after this, given his talents in that area. Still, it passed the time.
This one and only this one. All I'll ever need.
SIDE NOTE: A criminal's wet dream!
PERSONAL: How F'in cool is it, when he does the slide tackle in the police station. From Ted Kotcheff, director of "Uncommon Valor." I can't even rate this, due to the fact, there aren't enough stars.
Definitely better than the cartoon Rambo became afterwards (Stallone's ego has a knack for destroying his own succesful franchises), but mostly this is a cheesier, less ambiguous ripoff of Walter Hill's far superior Nam-allegory, Southern Comfort, that's even shot by Hill's go to-cinematographer.
A bunch of actors were on the list for this movie before Stallone signed on as star and writer, it makes me think How would this movie of gone if Pacino was actually in this movie, with the original script, if Kirk Douglas Played his CO. Hmm Questions. It's a hell of a watch none the less.
The movie that helped launch Sly further into an action star, still the best movie of the Rambo series, the movie based on a book of the same name by David Morrell features Sly as a presumed drifer, passing through a small town which has a very clean reputation. The local sheriff takes offence to this and tries to bully him out of town with devastating results. Rambo takes them through the local forests in order to escape, and is hunted down. Although over 30 years old, this film still holds up against today's action movies. Great film that I like to watch along with Commando for an exciting day off.
Like most 80s action, there isn't a strong plot, and I'd recommend reading the book afterwards so you have an idea of how the author wanted this told.
- Apocalypse Now
- Enter the Void
- Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop…
- The Great Dictator
- Mr. Woodcock
- Deep Rising
- Bangkok Dangerous
- All the Boys Love Mandy Lane
A list with film titles that could easily have been titles of porn movies.
Got any more?
- My Neighbor Totoro
- Blade Runner
- The Shining
- The Thing
- Raiders of the Lost Ark
Preempting jvince's inevitable community list, here are my favourite films of the 1980s. The decade is often seen as a…