Lincoln Hawk (Stallone) is a struggling trucker who arm wrestles on the side to make extra cash while trying to rebuild his life. After the death of his wife, he tries to make amends with ... See full summary »
A gang of neo-fascist thugs, led by the self-proclaimed 'Night Slasher', are breaking into people's homes & cars, then killing them at random. When of of these thugs holds up a food store & takes hostages, Lt. Marian Cobretti - an intense, take-no-prisoners cop, is brought onto the scene to end the hostage-taking. Ranting bizarrely about a 'New World', the man levels a sawed-off shotgun at Cobretti, who hits him with a knife, then guns him down when the man refuses to put down his weapon. Later that night, another murder occurs, attributed to the Night Slasher - and the next day, another one. This one is witnessed by a young woman, Ingrid Knutsen. She drives away before the thugs can kill her, but it isn't long before some creepy-looking people start making attempts on her life - and Cobretti's. Cobretti plans to move the only witness to the blood spree upstate, but with inside information, the thugs follow them. And a battle for survival rages between Cobretti and the thugs... Written by
With two Rambo movies, First Blood (1982) and Rambo : First Blood part II (1985) under his commando belt, Sylvester Stallone had confidently confirmed himself as the Box Office king of the Action Thriller genre. With all the gingoism and American flag waving that went with the comic strip adventures of the worlds favourite fictional viet nam vet, Stallone steps up a gear into Cobra (1986), one of the tightest, exciting, well written and under-rated action movies of the past few decades. Stallone takes British crime novelette Running Duck (US - Fair Game} from celebrated writer Paula Gossling and gives it the full Rambo gloss treatment. Gone from the novel is the alcoholic schizoid lead character and in his place is Marion Cobretti, the typical, four square Stallone character, and the story is all the better for this. Stallone' screenplay is pretty simple, and so is the under lying message that evil is a force that must be met on its own terms. So what we have is a violent actioneer chock full of punch ups, car chases and shooting. Sadly, the script isn't developed enough, and the Rocky elemnts so typical of Stallone's movies at this point, IE, the underdog hero who everyone is against, is used to the maxim here. Unlike the Rocky movies, the glare of humour isn't up to scratch, and so a great many of the lead characters are unlikeable. So what? Wasn't this the case with thrillers such as Seven or Resovoir Dogs? However, Rambo Director George Pan Cosmatos gives a fresh coat of paint to this particular movie, adding stylish touches of film noir to the action genre in a way that precceeds Face/Off (1997) and a whole host of successors. Bridgette Nielsen is the movies real surprise, giving a likeable and sincere performance as Helgar, under the watchful eye of her then Husband. What is really surprising is that Cosmatos manages to succesfully blend into the action genre touches of classic and contemporary horror movies such as Friday the Thirteenth and John Carpenters Halloween with the chilling depiction of the Night Slashers. The movie also contains some of the most exhilerating action and chase sequences, particularly in the movies climax, where Cobra lets rip unto the Night Slashers men. This is an under-rated gem, a very efficient Stallone/George Pan Cosmatos vehicle, and very possibly the best ever Menahem Golan, Yoram Globus/Cannon Film Group picture ever produced. .......................................................................
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