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First Blood (1982)

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Former Green Beret John Rambo is pursued into the mountains surrounding a small town by a tyrannical sheriff and his deputies, forcing him to survive using his combat skills.



(based on the novel by), (screenplay by) | 2 more credits »
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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Shingleton (as David Crowley)
Preston (as Don Mackay)
Pilot (as Chuck Tamburro)
Craig Huston ...
Radio Operator (as Craig Wright Huston)


John J. Rambo is a former United States Special Forces soldier who fought in Vietnam and won the Congressional Medal of Honor, but his time in Vietnam still haunts him. As he came to Hope, Washington to visit a friend, he was guided out of town by the Sheriff William Teasel who insults Rambo, but what Teasel does not know that his insult angered Rambo to the point where Rambo became violent and was arrested. As he was at the county jail being cleaned, he escapes and goes on a rampage through the forest to try to escape from the sheriffs who want to kill him. Then, as Rambo's commanding officer, Colonel Samuel Trautman tries to save both the Sheriff's department and Rambo before the situation gets out of hand. Written by John Wiggins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


This time he's fighting for his life. See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

22 October 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Rambo: First Blood  »


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,642,005, 24 October 1982, Wide Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(4 channels)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


There are two possible alternate endings thought of or considered by Michael Kozoll, William Sackheim and Sylvester Stallone. The first would had seen Colonel Trautman forced to shoot and kill Rambo, just as Rambo is about to shoot the injured Teasle and kill him. The other ending would had seen Rambo run out of the police station in slow-motion, opening fire at the police, but, the police shoot and kill Rambo. See more »


Medal of Honor winners are awarded a lifetime pension in addition to any veteran's benefits which are due to them. It's unlikely that John Rambo would be a homeless transient as even in 1982 he would have been entitled to amounts of money which would have exceeded the minimum wage for time. See more »


[first lines]
Rambo: Can you tell me if Delmar Berry lives here?
See more »


Referenced in Taken (2008) See more »


It's a Long Road
Music by Jerry Goldsmith
Lyrics by Hal Shaper
Arranged by David Paich and Marty Paich
Produced by Bruce Botnick
Sung by Dan Hill
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

"Don't push it or I'll give you a war you won't believe. Let it go. "
8 July 2007 | by See all my reviews

Sylvester Stallone achieved amazing heights during the 80's, along with Arnold Schwarzenegger, especially as a movie character synonymous with the muscled guy who is a pure fighting machine…

In Ted Kotcheff's "First Blood," John Rambo (Stallone) is a highly decorated Vietnam veteran who was trained specifically as a killing machine… He has come to a quite little town in Oregon, only to visit one of his platoon buddies… He was told that his friend has died, last summer, of cancer…

Disheartened, Rambo continues to walk the streets of Hope when he is annoyed by the local Sheriff (Brian Dennehy), and booked for vagrancy and resisting arrest…

Beaten, kicked all over, treated like trash, and pushed too far by the other cops in the Sheriff's office, Rambo is taking back to traumatic flashbacks, to the enduring torture in POW camp… Rambo, by that point, fights his way out and wages a one-man war against the police force that escalates out of control... Rambo is seen as a one man army overpowering all the sheriff's deputies and escaping into the surrounding woods…

"First Blood" communicates the rage, the depression, the frustration and the psychological wounds of one Vietnam soldier that fought for his country and was then hassled by it upon his return…

But what makes Rambo such a dangerous hero is Brian Dennehy being incredibly efficient as the cruel officer who doesn't like the looks of Stallone... Sure he's the abusive sheriff who is the victim of his environment, but he's also arrogant and incessantly underestimating a man who was 'the best, with guns, with knives, with his bare hands…'

Dennehy got a presence of his own pushing an 'expert in guerrilla warfare' at the breaking point…

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