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Rambo movie that started all in the action genre my personal favorite Stallone's best movie
ivo-cobra82 January 2018
First Blood (1982) is a classic action movie that started all action genre one man army types action movies. It is my personal favorite movie of all time. I am a huge Rambo fan and I love John Rambo character. I love First Blood, Rambo: First Blood Part II and Rambo to death. I love them so much it is my favorite film series. I love First Blood to death this is my personal favorite action film. It is in my top 5 Stallone's favorite action films part 4 and 5 is Cliffhanger and Demolition Man. It is my personal favorite action film in the Rambo series. I love Rambo: First Blood Part II to death it is my number 1 favorite action film in the action genre. First Blood is my personal favorite action film of all time it is right up there with Part II. It is my number 3 favorite action in the Rambo series but I still love First Blood to death.

This is my comic book hero this is my childhood movie the movie I grew up with it. This is the best movie ever my all time favorite action movie. It is the best of the best of all time. Sylvester Stallone co-write the script and started and the men can act, he is an action hero on screen in my opinion his best film. Yours is Rocky mine is Rambo action hero. I love Rambo's Survival Knife he rally's on his knife.

"I could have killed 'em all, I could've killed you. In town you're the law, out here it's me. Don't push it! Don't push it or I'll give you a war you won't believe. Let it go. Let it go! "

First Blood is a realistic film portrayed about John Rambo a troubled and misunderstood Vietnam veteran who saw hell in the Vietnam War and he is hunted by the past. Sylvester Stallone plays the character of John Rambo very convincingly and Director Ted Kotcheff brings out the story to an effective scale allowing us to see the action through the character's eyes.. "First Blood" doesn't deal with CGI nor does it deal with special effects. It deals or tries to deal really hard on what is real. He feels that society is against him and he is angry.

The movie has ton's of action, the motorcycle chases. Rambo climbs the wall of mountain and is been pursued by a helicopter and the police officer becomes the killer and try's to shoot Rambo with a riffle. Rambo jumps and hangs him self on the tree. That jump was for real and Sylvester Stallone really performed it. Rambo uses his martial arts to defend him self against abusive corrupt cops to escape. I love how the film shows Rambo trying to survive out in the woods while the guards are hunting him when in turn he is hunting them creating these traps putting these officers in painful situations.

The best thing about "First Blood" is that we know that John Rambo was in the Vietnam War and was trained to kill, yet, he doesn't kill a single human in the film on purpose. John Rambo uses M60 machine gun and shoot up various stores in town including police station destroys the gun store and gas station. Brian Dennehy and Richard Crenna both acted opposite Sylvester Stallone and they both acted well. Brian Dennehy as Sheriff Will Teasle was excellent bad guy he performs his character well. Richard Crenna is Colonel Sam Trautman who trained and command Rambo in Vietnam for 3 years he is excellent as father figure to Rambo.

"First Blood" is the best of the Rambo series mine personal favorite action film . The movie has beautiful music score from Jerry Goldsmith 10/10 Grade: Bad-Ass Seal Of Approval My personal favorite action movie of all time.
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After almost a quarter of a century it's still a great movie!
Arthur D.7 September 2006
I totally agree with the comments of a previous reviewer who said that Sylvester Stallone is greatly underestimated as an actor. I wouldn't go as far as calling him the best actor that Hollywood has ever had, but he IS so much better than a lot of people say that he is. In my opinion Stallone shouldn't make comedies, but when it comes to action movies (Rambo, Rocky, Cobra, etc.) he's definitely one of the best! Rambo was a sensational movie in the 80's, but every time that I see it nowadays I'm amazed by the fact that it is actually a very good, original story. Brian Dennehy really shows his acting skills as well, leaving the audience confused whether to have sympathy for the character that he plays or to hate the character. First Blood is a movie filled with action. Like all the action movies from the 1980's "First Blood" also tends to become slightly over the top in the end. Still I gave it a 10/10 for the simple fact that I wanted to compensate for the people who "underrate" this movie. Normally I would give this movie an "8". If it had not been for the action scenes that are over the top this movie could even have scored a bit higher!
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They drew first blood not me. They drew first blood.
Dan Grant14 June 1999
First Blood is simply one of the best films ever made. I think it transcends the action film genre and has stood the test of time. Stallone was immensely popular back in the 80's and if it is true that he hated the first cut of the film, then one can only say that he is lucky that he didn't get his wish to scrap the entire thing.

John Rambo is first introduced to us as he is walking into a small town to look for a friend of his that he served in Vietnam with. Upon discovering that he contracted cancer coming back from the war, Rambo wanders aimlessly into town. He is greeted by a small town overzealous sheriff named Will Teasle, played wonderfully by Brian Denehy. He at first tells Rambo that he will help him out and give him a ride. When Rambo asks if he can find a good place to eat, Teasle directs him to a diner about 10 miles up the highway. Rambo asks if there is a law against him eating in the town, Teasle, says yea, me. This sets up the premise as Rambo begins walking back into town. Arrested for vagrancy, Rambo is taken to the local jail and we meet some of the local redneck officers, notably, a young David Caruso, who seems to be the only one who empathizes with Rambo. Finally, he escapes the jail and takes the entire small town sheriff department and the military on a hunt into the local "jungle."

First Blood has strength of character. It has frenetic action scenes and every actor in the film is at the top of their game. Samuel Trautman, Rambo's mentor and former Colonel in the war, is played by Richard Crenna as a no nonsense but empathetic man. He knows Rambo has pushed back a little too hard but he understands where his plight comes from. He wants to avoid more bloodshed but at the same time he doesn't completely agree with how Rambo has been treated. He is obviously a law abiding citizen, but he knows that not all the laws were upheld when dealing with Rambo.

Sylvester Stallone is RAMBO. There is no one else that could play him. Just like Harrison Ford embodies Indiana Jones and Bruce Willis is John McClane, Stallone is about as good as he has ever been here. He is quiet, he is strong and his physicality creates a character that many of us can empathize with and eventually root for. David Morell wrote a different character in his book but Stallone paints him more as a sympathetic character. He is correct in doing so. While Morell's vision is still present, this is more of Stallone's creation. Rambo is about as unique a character present in film history.

First Blood is a film released in 1982, but in my opinion it set a new standard for action film stars. I think James Bond was pretty much your standard action film star before that. He was smooth and debonair and nothing went wrong for him. Rambo, at least in First Blood, is realistic. He bleeds, he cries, and he wears his emotion on his sleeve. This is someone that many of us could and can relate to. The sequels made him larger than life and that is fine, but this small film done by the Carolco guys is about as perfect a film as you can get.

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A movie that though aged, is still as relevant as ever... *Very minor spoilers*
weresmurf3 February 2008
Warning: Spoilers
My father served in the Vietnam war at the age of 21, much like John Rambo would have had he been real. In real life, my father endured a hell hole, a place he to this day, will rarely speak of without tears in his eyes, stories have been told to me about watching his friends die over there, of seeing atrocities done by both sides, a horrible horrific situation that no man woman or child should ever have seen.

He spoke to me once, of returning to Australia, to a country he loved, called home. He spoke to me of feeling proud, in his uniform, having completed his tour, of stepping off the plane.

And then he told me of the ridicule and scorn he received from the general public upon his return. A return where he was called a baby killer, despite never having actually killed anyone himself surprisingly, where it was simply assumed he was the one at fault, that the public would scorn him, forget he was human, treat him like a social outcast. Treat him, like an animal.

Which is part of the reason he and I bonded so well over this movie when we first watched it. Sure, it's an agrandised tale of a badly treated Vet, a man forgotten by his government, much like my own father.

When we see Stallone performing as Rambo in this movie, he's not fantastical, he's not superman, he's a man who's been wronged, who fights back the only way he knows how.

When you see this movie, understand that this is, despite the fantastical elements in this film, a very accurate portrayal of how our veterans are treated. They're forgotten, they're given over to an ill equipped health system, be they in Australia or America, they're treated like outcasts.

The beautiful thing about First Blood, when you watch it, is it's so easy to identify with Rambo, so easy to see he's just a good man, having a bad time, who reacts in possibly the worst way to whats happening to him... but that worst way, is the only appropriate way. The torture he endures under a biased prejudiced sheriff, the lack of respect for serving his country, the health system that should've picked up on his quite obvious PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), none of it was there for him.

When it hits the fan, and Rambo goes on his escape, ask yourself, is he really hunting them? If they had've let him go, wouldn't it have been better for them? Didn't he just want to be left alone after all? The one message this movie, less than subtly puts across, is something we all need to learn. Whether its WW1 or 2, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm 1 or 2, you're not expected to agree with the war, you're not expected to support the war. But for gods sake support your troops. Next time your national day rolls around, like in Australia for Anzac Day, take the time to show a veteran, no matter if they're 25 or 95, show them they're appreciated, let them know they made a great sacrifice, that you respect what they did.

Rambo succeeds on this level, especially Stallones final speech to Richard Crenna, which absolutely tears you apart, realising this man was plucked from obscurity, trained to be a god amongst normal men, then, when the machine of war was done with him, tossed out like a little spring from the machine, useless, unneeded and no longer wanted... where was he to go? What was he to do? It's a realistic situation that many, many veterans go through, google War Veteran Suicide rate sometime, it's an eye opening somewhat depressing look at the reality of the situation regarding our beloved Vets and the torturous return to mundane civilian life they have to go through...

Don't respect the war, don't necessarily respect your government. But never, ever, disrespect the men and women who fight for your right to freedom. When you disrespect our soldiers, you disrespect everything our nations stand for. And that, is criminal.
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Total classic
Shawn Watson19 June 2001
Warning: Spoilers
Everything about this is brilliant. From Goldsmith's rousing score to Stallone's perfect performance. Yes, you heard me. Stallone does act in this movie. I feel so sorry for Rambo. People are real nasty to him. Especially the deputy with the moustache. He was a real jerk. The scene in which Rambo finally explodes in the jail cell is way cool. The music that goes with this scene is SO intense.

I highly recommend this movie and the soundtrack. This is a proper movie by the way. I know that the character of Rambo became a 'little' exaggerated and silly in the sequels but do not let that alter your opinion of this movie.

The Pacific Northwest scenery is also very beautiful and atmospheric. The sound design seems to be crafted so that dialogue sound natural like it would in a mountain forest or in dead cold environments where the air cannot carry sound so well.

See this movie in widescreen to appreciate how cool it really is.
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A Mesmerising Action Masterpiece
Calum Rhys31 July 2014
The ultimate action film and the ultimate psychological thriller! 'First Blood' was among others like 'Die Hard' as being one of the first action films I saw when I was younger, I even owned it on VHS. This film has Sly showing off his acting ability (which is saying something for an actor with such little capability of "acting") as the iconic John Rambo in the film that sparked off the eponymous film franchise, whilst the sequels were heavily classified as flops, 'First Blood' is a daring and thrilling survival adventure that follows a Vietnam Vet and the post-war trauma he suffers from. A dark yet sensitive film that follows one of the great action stars as he fights to survive, a mesmerising action masterpiece.
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"Don't push it or I'll give you a war you won't believe. Let it go. "
Nazi_Fighter_David8 July 2007
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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A taut exercise in suspense that bears little relation to its silly sequels...
Howlin Wolf10 October 2001
Surprise, a "Rambo" movie that tries to say something profound about the plight of its main character and his mental state. For the most part it succeeds. Not for this movie the ridiculously oiled pectorals of part II, where Rambo is transformed into a grunting, soul-less killing machine. He actually begins the movie as a fairly nice chap, someone we can sympathise with, and it's his unnecessarily rough treatment at the hands of small-town sheriff Dennehey and his crew that is likely to shift audience sympathies firmly in the direction of the 'misunderstood' Vietnam vet.

Here, Rambo is also a character who is reluctant to kill unless he absolutely has to. A far cry from the eventual homicidal maniac he was to become, who is seemingly responsible for more death than World Wars 1 & 2 combined. So, to those expecting bucketloads of gore and senseless killing, you'd probably be better off watching the news. "First Blood" is actually more akin to those 'survival in the wilderness' programs you might see on the Discovery Channel; with Rambo having to rely more on guile and cunning than brawn and an M-16 to get him out of tricky situations.

That's not to imply that this is boring. Far from it. Director Kotcheff shows a keen awareness of pace, it's never by any means certain that Rambo will survive (if you discount the other films, of course!) and the supporting characters are all wonderfully unsympathetic. Even Trautmann, Rambo's supposed mentor, has a touch of the villain about him for being complicit in the ultimate dehumanisation of Rambo during the war. By far the best character here is played by Dennehey; always watchable, but Stallone too is good; nicely restrained, more "Cop Land" than "Cobra"

Not an action film as such, it sits better as suspense. In that sense, it does exactly what it says on the tin; rendering John Rambo a far more interesting character here than his incarnation in the other two films. That is basically just wet-dream material for inadequate, spotty faced adolescent boys everywhere. This Rambo is recognisably human. Having said that, neither should you view expecting a solemn Vietnam protest movie in the vein of "Platoon" or "The Deer Hunter". It's different in tone and style to the both of those movies, but in my view at least, is better than either of them.
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Rambo is an icon.
F0RCE21 March 2001
The adaptation of this novel to the big screen is a great accomplishment. The film is not only the beginning of one of the greatest action trilogies of all-time, but it charts the developments of its characters, something rarely done by an action movie. "First Blood" is a moving story about the realities of post-Vietnam America and is very underrated as a film.
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A hell of a film.* * * * *
David Slicer24 November 2004
The character of John Rambo became more popular in films such as "Rambo:First Blood,Part II" and "Rambo III".The character were treated like a comic book hero spawning action figures and a short lived animated series which lasted only a short while.There are not that many people who has heard of the Rambo character.He's well known through out,but today's generation would have been lucky to catch him on VHS or DVD.Back in 1982 when the character of John Rambo was introduced to movie screens,filmgoers were dealing with a character that was not displayed as an action icon,but a man who had a lot of demons within him.The best thing about "First Blood" is that John Rambo is not portrayed as an action hero.He is portrayed more as a man.A man who is haunted by memories of the Vietnam War.Sylvester Stallone plays the character of John Rambo very convincingly and Director Ted Kotcheff brings out the story to an effective scale allowing us to see the action through the character's eyes.Violence in films are the main aspects in film today.Or at least one of.It's fun to watch a violent film,but the violence in this film was not filmed to thrill the audience,but to make us understand what John Rambo is going through.I have these memories of first watching this film twenty years ago when I was twelve."First Blood" doesn't deal with CGI nor does it deal with special effects.It deals or tries to deal really hard on what is real.I like "First Blood" because I understand the character.He feels that society is against him and he is angry.A lot of films there is only one villain where as in this one society is the villain.That is according to Rambo.Actually,there is one villain named Sheriff Teasle played by Brian Dennehy.He and Rambo seemed to clash against each other and Ted Kotcheff let's us experience these two men go at it.I liked how the film shows Rambo trying to survive out in the woods while the guards are in hunting him when in turn he is hunting them creating these traps putting these officers in painful situations.The best thing about "First Blood" is that we know that John Rambo was in the Vietnam War and was trained to kill,yet,he doesn't kill a single human in the film on purpose.The killing of Galt was accidental and was deserving according to my eyes.This film is the best in the Rambo series because I understand the character and I understand why he is acting violent."First Blood" doesn't bring us John Rambo,the action hero but John Rambo,a regular man with a lot of demons he must face."First Blood" is the best of the Rambo series.
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Stallone is the most underestimated actor of his age
bellkenneth23 March 2004
this is certainly not the greatest film ever made. in fact, it's plot is predictable and formulaic, and every character is two-dimensional.

having said that, this is a film that is often dismissed as a macho action flick with no redeeming feature. these are opinions i would defy.

while the only imagination put into the film seems to be the various ways in which John Rambo can kill people, the basic theme is nevertheless a pretty strong one. this is not meant to be a Fellini-esque commentary on life, the universe, and everything.

the three most important characters in the film are all played by pros. you have Stallone's John Rambo, Dennehy's Sheriff Teasle, and Richard Crenna's Colonal Trautman.

Brian Dennehy hasn't missed a beat in his entire career; he's been a superb character actor since i've been watching movies, and - like Michael Caine - he always puts everything into each performance. his Sheriff Teasle is menacing, bigoted, and protective. he comes across like a man who's marked his territory and won't permit intrusions. i won't say he's brilliant, but he is absolutely believable as a small-town sheriff faced with a situation so far out of his own experience that he cannot figure out why he can't solve the problem.

Crenna is a patriarchial character, such as he often seems to play. he gives the Spec Ops Colonal Trautman enough soul to make him seem human, and enough blood and guts to make him seem like a veteran soldier.

of course, the centrepiece to the film is Sylvester Stallone. Stallone always suffers from the perception engendered by his appearance. he is a somewhat short fellow with a body of bulging unpronoucable muscles, and a sad bassett-hound face that looks like it was designed by someone out of "Oliver Twist."

but the man can flat-out act. he gives John Rambo depth and reality. he comes across as far too fit and far too silent because Rambo is far too fit and far too silent. like his character in "Copland," Stallone is playing a guy who pretty much wants to be left alone and is caught up by a bunch of people around him who are overly enthused by their own status.

while i can understand the dismissal of this film as just a patriotic action sop, i cannot also accept that Stallone does not give a good performance. the man has been characatured; he's an easy target. he's a really built short-guy. but Stallone's intelligence and creativity drove his first film, "Rocky," and neither quality has deserted him since. like Michael Caine, he does seem to take any old lame role offered to him. but he always gets paid, and he always puts everything into his performances.

i'll never campaign for this film to be considered a "great" film, but i think i'll always defend it's star as a guy who works too hard too often to get the such little credit.

i guess the best way i can put it is, i watched "First Blood," and i believed him. i believed Stallone.

last time i checked, that is what an actor is supposed to do.
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In war, a hero, in peace, forsaken.
KL-629 September 1999
This is a truly unique movie that quickly became obscured due to the later sequels. It tells the story of a man who survived one hell, only to return home despised and forsaken because of it. There was a time when America didn't quite know what to think of the lost war, and so it was forgotten - and the men who came out of it as well. Rambo finds he cannot survive this war, because it is still going on within him.

Finally, pushed too far by a small town sheriff, Rambo returns to the only thing he can relate to. War. Yet it is a war he almost mercifully wages on the macho egotistical deputies and week end warriors that pursue. To potentially misquote Rambo :

"I coulda killed them all, I could have killed you. In town you're the law, out here it's me. Let it go..."
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First Blood: Classic.
furiousneon20 July 2003
This movie was a classic. A great action movie and a movie that really showed you what vietnam soldiers went through when they came back from the war. Stallone plays John Rambo perfectly and he is physically excellent for the role as well. He proves at the end alone that he can act and show emotion with the best of them. The first time i saw this i was very emotional at the end because Stallone really gives you a taste of what the soldiers had to go through when they got home. The action is classic, The acting is classic...RAMBO is Classic. 10/10.
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A well-written adaptation and film
somegravity9 June 2007
Sure,"First Blood" is known by people who have not seen it as a "bang,bang,shoot 'em up" action film. Yet,don't let what others think of it trick you. As said by another reviewer,"First Blood" is a classic.

Based off of the 1972 novel by David Morell,"First Blood" is about a former green beret of the Vietnam War,John Rambo (Sylvester Stallone). Despite the fact that John Rambo gave a strong service to America during the years that he fought in Vietnam,lately,Rambo finds his life falling apart. This is something that has personally torn John Rambo apart.

And then,one day,things take a turn for the worse. This is when John Rambo is arrested by a sheriff in a small Alaska town(Hope),Will Teasle(Brian Dennehey)for vagrancy. Shortly thereafter,before John Rambo knows it,his patience and mental state are being put to a test. The result? John Rambo escaping from the police and launching a one-man war against them and the national guard. The only person who can help everyone get through it all? Colonel Samuel Trautman (Richard Crenna),a close friend of John Rambo who served with Rambo in Vietnam.

Let's talk about "First Blood" on the whole. Similar to 1988's "Die Hard" and 1993's "The Fugitive","First Blood" is one of the most well-written and adapted films (despite the several differences between the film and the novel). Not only is the action in "First Blood" perfect for any action film,it is quite suspenseful. It is not in the script just for the sake of being there. It is in the script because it needs to be there. The action in "First Blood" works well into the script,and is only to be found where it belongs.

There is a lot of good drama and chemistry in "First Blood",as well. On top of everything that John Rambo has gone through in his life being richly executed drama that fits in well with the action in "First Blood",the scenes with the action are not just action scenes. They are scenes that contain action,drama,and chemistry. This is due to viewers of "First Blood" being able to watch John Rambo fight the Police and the National Guard with not only his weapons,but at the same time,his mind. The acting is in top shape,also. All of the actors in "First Blood" succeed in understanding their characters and bringing their characters to life with their performances. Especially Sylvester Stallone. Will Stallone ever have the presence and respect in Hollywood that actors like Paul Newman,Al Pacino,and Robert De Niro,plus several others,have earned and achieved? Surely and probably,no. But,in his performance as John Rambo,Stallone executes the drama that his performance requires. At the same time,Stallone does not fail to let the action in "First Blood" to be entertaining. He gives it the kind of action you would expect to see in any film that is reminiscent of "First Blood" ("Lethal Weapon","Die Hard",etc.). All of this is what helps "First Blood" fully come together,and make it the great film that it is.

Overall,a must see-film for fans of not only action films,but for fans of crime drama films,as well.

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Criminally underrated.
Goldwaterproductions28 June 2012
A lot of people know the Rambo series as a ridiculous 80's action series. But what a lot of people tend to forget is that the first movie in this series was not a ridiculous action movie. It's a serious, dark, thriller that has a very somber tone and a sympathetic lead character. Almost everything that Rambo is known for nowadays is completely absent in this movie. From the multitude of explosions to the high body count to the unrealistic action to the ridiculous story line is completely absent. There are only 2 or 3 explosions (not to mention they are realistically done) and only one person dies throughout the whole picture. and the action, while there isn't a lot, it's realistic. Even the story line you believe can actually happen. It's for these reasons that make this my favorite Rambo movie. And not to mention the fantastic and heart breaking performance given by Stallone. Why the Academy didn't nominate him for Best Actor at the Oscars is beyond me. If you didn't like the other Rambo movies because of their ridiculousness and haven't seen this film, I highly recommend seeing it. It's one of my favorite post-war movies if not one of my favorite movies of all time.

Final rating: 9/10
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We're not hunting him, he's hunting us…First Blood
jaredmobarak30 January 2008
If I'm going to see the fourth installment of a film franchise, I should at least check out the one that started it all. That fact brings me to finally seeing the 80's classic First Blood. It wears its decade on its sleeve with the acting, broad humor at times, and cheesy credit song "It's a Long Road." Despite all that, though, the movie lives up to the hype and fires on all cylinders. I had no clue that the story pitted one Green Beret against a hick town of bigot cops. When I thought Rambo and I had visions of one-man wars versus countries or platoons of soldiers, not civilians out with a vendetta. Rambo just wanted a friend in the world that saw him fight for his country with honor and return home to heckling and protest. All he did overseas was spit on by his return and he became a stereotype drifter, an untouchable to society. The truth of that comes out when a Sheriff in Oregon sees him crossing the street and escorts him out of town, refusing to allow him to even have one meal. He kept pushing and pushing, enough so that Rambo just couldn't take anymore.

As far as the premise goes, this one is quite effective. Based off a novel, I can see where the story would be strong despite the subsequent sequels for which I hear are horrible. To have a man beaten, on the brink of giving up on life, find his way back to the horrors he has been trying his hardest to forget is a clichéd setup for sure, but it is all we need to set this thing in motion. With some nice quick cuts, we are shown the torture he endured in Vietnam juxtaposed with the handling by the local authorities on a trumped up vagrancy charge for looking unclean. They drew first blood and it is up to him to get himself out, with or without taking other people with him. Rambo understands that these people are civilians and decides to only incapacitate them rather than kill all in his wake. These are not the Viet Cong, they are like him, however, they know nothing about what he has gone through in order to allow them to sit back at home feeling free. If nothing else, this film is here to show people that no matter what your views on a war may be, no matter how much one thinks it is not our fight, if our troops are there, they deserve our full support. They are doing a job and a service that we are not willing to do ourselves as we sit and watch TV feeds, shaking our heads that it is all for nothing. If we give even one inch, they will take a mile, you can't lay down, ever. They fight for us and deserve to be treated as heroes.

With all that said, can one really condone what John Rambo does in this film? No. Not even his old superior Colonel Trautman, brilliantly portrayed by Richard Creena, can accept what he is doing. He doesn't come in to set his boy free; he arrives to get him into custody so the fight will stop. The private war that has commenced needs to come with consequences. The punishment just needs to fit the crime. Rambo does nothing wrong except to hope for some shred of decency from humanity. That idealism is what causes all the trouble. Sheriff Teasle happens to be the straw that breaks the camel's back and all hell breaks loose. It is a matter of survival at first, but with the unrelenting pace, it soon turns into a search for justice by a warped mind doing the only job he knows how. I laughed when I heard the stats that the character kills just one person in this film. I mean how can Rambo, the ultimate badass, kill just one person? The laugh is on me, though, because I don't even count that one as his, it was the helicopter pilot's fault for jerking the aircraft. Rambo may destroy an entire town, but a cold-blooded murderer he is not—at least not until part two (with the great name of Rambo: First Blood II, a dual title that confuses the heck out of people on what the original truly was called).

First Blood has become so entrenched in popular culture and the lexicon of cinema that even though I had never seen the film, I could swear I knew Creena's monologue about Rambo verbatim. I'm sure it was parodied multiple times and probably shown at sporting events or something, but I just knew the entire speech—pretty crazy since I had never seen it before. Besides his nice turn during and after that sequence, we get a powerhouse performance from Brian Dennehy as the sheriff. This guy is good and it is too bad he was never used to full potential in the industry. Sure he did a lot of films, but nothing that he stood out from the pack with. As for the star, Sylvester Stallone shows why he was pound for pound the best action star of the 80's. Between this series and Rocky, he was stellar. From the charisma and shy modesty with which he begins the film, searching for his friend, to the stoic killing machine on the warpath, to the broken man unable to believe what has happened to the world around him, Sly runs the gamut effectively and perfectly. By far one of the best action films I've seen, First Blood stands the test of time and delivers on the cult status it holds. Surprisingly, I am now really looking forward to Rambo (part four) and definitely checking it out in a couple of days.
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Cleverly plotted, solid action film
averjee15 February 1999
Smart, well-plotted, action-filled, ultimately moving war film about a mentally unstable Vietnam vet who returns stateside to find another war raging - one against veterans.

Stallone gives a very good, understated performance - his action sequences are so realistic that it's hard to believe that no one got hurt during the filming. Dennehy is also superb as the chief pursuing officer, whose ragtag bunch of cops includes a small role for David Caruso.

I really did like this movie. I liked the overarching social message, and the unexpected twists and turns that follow a pretty routine event - a sheriff rousting a drifter, getting much more than he bargained for.
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The only good rambo movie
Wallace Chaplain III17 November 2004
How people can call this the worst one of the series or just a bad movie in general is beyond me. The action is actually believable and not something out of a video game. And the storyline is good and paints a good picture of life in America after the Vietnam war. Following the tale of the best of the best it is certainly not the best but very good. Better yet is the laughs that come from watching the bad cops get theirs. The only I have to complain about this movie is that the sequels were atrocious and painful. This is often looked over excellent movie that puts many other in the genre to shame. Many of you who find it boring are just gore junkies who thrive off of cheap explosions and a plethora of bullets in the air. Take it for a man trying to survive, not bringing down a whole army.
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First Blood (1982)
SnakesOnAnAfricanPlain29 December 2011
I, like many, have probably grown up with Rambo being a part of popular culture. From all those references to such an iconic character I was expecting some war film centered around an unstoppable killing machine. I was completely wrong, and thankfully so. Rambo is the story of a dark and troubled man. Rambo isn't a hero, but he should have been. He's a man that came home with no one to welcome him. He drifts from town to town, antagonised wherever he goes. One day a police force pushes him too far. Rambo's mental instabilities take hold and he pledges a war against these men in authority. There are no clearcut villains, and certainly no heroes here. We empathise with Rambo, and understand the police action taken against him. As well as being a commentary on the treatment of Vietnam Vets, it also shows how war isn't an excuse for such violent actions. Dennehy's wonderful character is shown (very subtly) as a soldier that managed to find his path. At the same time Dennehy doesn't know when to quit, his pride getting in the way. This is an action film with real substance, real issues, and real discussions to be had. It also never fails to deliver on the action, and Stallone's final emotional breakdown will relate to anyone that's been pushed too far. A film focused mostly on understanding, not excusing. I regret waiting this long to watch it.
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Nobody knew his name was Rambo all they knew was that he looked like trouble.
bluesman-2023 April 2008
First Blood is that rare film that is not black and white instead it deals with areas of Gray. Stallone's Acting is Very Good maybe the Finest he's ever done outside of F.I.S.T. And Yet while his Rambo is a compelling portrait of a man slowly going insane trying to find something resembling peace. Rambo never finds it. All he finds is hatred and fear aimed at him and that makes them hostile towards him. The Main Villain in this if you can call him one is Police Chief Wil Teasle wonderfully played by Brian Dennehy. The interaction between the two is tense and that's before the shooting starts. But this is Stallone's movie and his Tour de force as he creates a complex character that many have a hard time separating from the Real Stallone. Richard Crenna Steals the Show as Colonel Sam Trautman United States Special Forces coming all the way from fort Bragge to come get his boy. Crenna underplays his role cool as anyone has a right to be. Together this cast sets off a match headed towards Kegs of Gunpowder and dynamite First Blood does not disappoint and it will stay with you long after you've seen it.
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This is a Great Great Film!
Tiger_Mark10 February 2004
It is sad that the image of Sly Stallone has become what it has become. He is mocked and used as a punchline by more than a few comics. As a result, many of his films are seen in a less than favorable light. This is very unfortunate, because in "First Blood," Sly made one of the great all-time action films. However, it is more than an action film, and if the final scene does not make your skin tingle, well, you are not human. In many ways, First Blood captures, more than any other film, the difficulty many returning Vietnam Vets had when they returned to America. They had so many friends and so much responsibility in Vietnam. Back in America, they were isolated and slow to readjust into the peacetime way of life. As a result, many were sent wandering about, or worse, heading to jail. First Blood tells the story of one American hero who you should not push too far. In John Rambo, you have a hero from a war nobody wanted to remember. However, the town that persecuted him will remember him, for a long time.
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An 80's Action Masterpiece!!!
jay_amer16 January 2018
Wow.....what a hell of a movie! First Blood is an action movie that is unforgettable and intense! The story is great! Everything about this movie is perfect! I give this a 10/10. Would highly recommend it to others! Great movie!
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One of the most memorable action series began with this drama
Robert W.23 January 2008
Warning: Spoilers
One of the things that surprised me the most when I watched First Blood for the first time was that it wasn't an action film. Yes it had a lot of stunts and some action sequences but it wasn't the blow things up, in your face, guns blazing action that you might associate with Rambo films. Instead First Blood had a important story...with a character that instilled itself into pop culture infamy forever and its easy to see why and how. First Blood is about stereotyping, profiling, exclusion, war and watching it nowadays makes it even more important than it was then or later on. With eye opening Vietnam films like Apocalypse Now, Platoon, Casualties of War and so forth First Blood did something that those films weren't able to do...take the exact same message and bring it to the mainstream public with one of the biggest stars of the day. In a way First Blood is almost shocking because essentially John Rambo is NOT the hero. I suppose he could be considered the 'anti-hero' but his actions are not saving anyone, and in fact hurting innocent people who can't possibly fight him but try to no avail anyways. Still the message is clear and it's a very story driven film with the creation of a movie icon.

I'll argue with anyone, anytime...Sylvester Stallone is a very talented actor AND a very talented writer. No one could ever touch the character of John Rambo the way he did. Stallone went way beyond the action genre and actually created John Rambo from personality and history and his movements, everything. In this first installment he laid the groundwork for Rambo. Quiet, brooding, scorned, angry, unstable, haunted, deeply emotional but buried beneath all these other emotions. I think that's a hell of a performance in my books. Brian Dennehy is Stallone's rival and does a terrific job playing the conceited and determined small town sheriff who will stop at nothing to bring Rambo down. The two of them have a terrific on screen chemistry and Dennehy is a first rate actor. Richard Crenna adds to the cast as Rambo's only true 'family' and the one person he trusts. Crenna doesn't give a lot of variation to his performance, he's just kind of there to inform everyone of what Rambo is capable of. He is sort of monotoned and straight faced but he's a Rambo series staple and the character he plays is very important.

Watch the end of this film closely for John Rambo's break down in the Grocery store when Traut (Crenna) tells him "It's over." You know the infamous line "Not that it's over." Watch the scene that follows and then tell me that you're not moved and blown away by Stallone's performance. It's real and it's important. First Blood by some will be considered untouchable by the rest because they see it for what it was likely meant to be...a drama...and important drama with a message but the film makers created this incredible character and by the time the film is done you're thinking one thing; I want to see this guy in his element in the action that they speak of and then you have the serializing of Rambo (which you will see by my review is NOT a bad thing.) I suppose I'm judging First Blood on it's merit of being considered an action film because as great as Stallone is and how interesting the film is...I didn't find it mind blowingly entertaining. Still the film is well made an absolute classic and definitely worth seeing. If you're a huge Rambo fan then you can find a lot of hidden details about this mysterious man that Stallone created. It's a must see on any list. 8/10

**************** NOTE

Yesterday on Tuesday January 22/2008 star of big screen hits Heath Ledger passed away in his home. I just want to wish his family, his daughter, and Michelle Williams and all his friends my deepest sympathy and I always believed he was destined to be a big star. I will most certainly miss his work.
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Great movie.
kyle-mcdonald26 January 2008
The only thing that I can say about this movie is that it is great and you will never forget it and you will want to watch it over and over again and here are the reasons why: The storyline is great the actors and acting is really good it has lots of action in it The cast is really good such as Sylvester Stallone as John Rambo, Richard Crenna as col. Samuel trautman, Brian Dennehy as Hope sheriff will teasel. also the special effects are good and everything else is good and it is a unforgettable movie. So i am sure that you will not be disappointed with first blood because it is really good. So Make sure that you rent or buy first blood because it is great.

Overall score: ********** out of **********

***** out of *****
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