topfivefilms.com Wednesday 26th January 2022
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Rambo (18)
Directed by: Sylvester Stallone
Reviewed by: Paul Fonz

If you'd have asked me a few months ago if I'd wanted to see the revival of an average action franchise from 25 years ago, featuring a hero in his sixties, I'd have probably said "no". Unless you were talking about the Indiana Jones films, in which case I'd call you a loser for describing them as average. Why would you do that?

Even guys in their sixties can be dangerous with a vehicle mounted cannon
Even guys in their sixties can be dangerous with a vehicle mounted cannon

Anyway, the fact is that Sylvester Stallone has big fat gone ahead and revived John Rambo, writing, directing and starring in one of the best action films I've seen for ages. It's at this point you should get excited, because let's not forget that Stallone is an Oscar-winning screenwriter with a real flare for creating genre-defining characters.

The film begins with Rambo as a jaded, world-weary character, living out his days in Thailand, catching snakes with his bare hands for a living. Like much of this film, it's wonderfully tacky. However, if you're expecting an hour and half of non-stop cheese, you're going to be disappointed.

Almost from the outset, we're treated to some extremely violent scenes of atrocities being committed in Burma, and there is nothing cheesy about them. They are brutal, frenetic and extremely graphic. Gone are the shots of guys falling over clutching bullet wounds, and instead we have soldiers and civilians alike getting holes ripped through them by a hail of gunfire and some of the best explosions I've seen for ages.

Rambo's mission soon reveals itself, and again it's a bit of a surprise. He's not storming into Burma to take on the might of the country's military and Sort Everything Out. It's a simple extraction mission, and the story never gets beyond that. He wants to get in and get out.

Frankly, the whole film is extremely entertaining. It's the perfect balance of tackiness and great action, it's not long enough to outstay its welcome and it carefully treads on the border of believability. The direction is impressive too, adding to the tension and giving the battle scenes maximum impact. It's fair to say that I enjoyed this one so much that I'm all ready to see a sequel to Over The Top now!

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Length: 91 minutes
Certificate: 18
Official Site: http://www.sonypictures.co.uk/movies/rambo/index.html
IMDB Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0462499/
Release Date: 22nd February 2008

Top Five Rating: 80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0% (80.0%)
User Rating: 70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0% (70.0%)

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