Pros: Sylvester Stallone; current topic; Rambo’s inventive and bloody revenge; good cinematography at times; credits Cons: Cliche characters and dialogues; the first part of the film is drawn out; weak direction Rambo: Last Blood / “Rambo: Last Blood”
Genre: Drama, Action
Directed by Adrian Grunberg
Starring: Sylvester Stallone (John Rambo), Yvette Monreal (Gabriela), Adriana Barraza (Maria Beltran), Paz Vega (Carmen Delgado), Sergio Peris-Mencheta (Hugo Martinez), Oscar Jaenada (Victor Martinez), etc.
Balboa Productions, Lionsgate
Year of release 2019
At the end of Rambo (2008), the fourth film in the series, John Rambo returned to the United States to his father’s farm in Arizona, where he has lived for the past 10 years, breeding and training horses and caring for the girl Gabriela and her grandmother, whom he had taken in at one time. . The war never let Rambo go; he still has difficulty controlling himself, takes pills every day and only calms down by working with horses and communicating with Gabriela. But the girl has already grown up, she is going to college, and before that she plans to go to Mexico to see her father, who abandoned them 10 years ago. Naturally, this trip will end very badly and Rambo will again take out his old bow and knife to deal with the scum who dared to offend someone close to him.
Rambo: Last Blood can be divided into two unequal parts – the first, dedicated to Rambo’s life on the farm and the kidnapping of Gabriela, and the second, in which the old soldier punishes the scoundrels in an inventive and bloody way. The problem is that the first part takes up almost three quarters of the total running time of the film, and it is very leisurely.
Imitating the very first film, the authors tried to make Last Blood not an action movie in the spirit of the second, third and fourth parts of the series, but a social drama, this time devoted to two current topics at once – post-traumatic stress disorder and sexual exploitation. Unfortunately, Last Blood doesn’t give any answer to the question of what to actually do about both of these problems. Instead, the film depicts the Mexican mafia involved in human trafficking in the most formulaic and straightforward way possible, and essentially advises Americans to avoid traveling to this country. The only solution that the authors of the film propose is to kill everyone involved, but it is obvious that this will not eradicate the problem in any way; other scum will come to replace the dead, considering women to be inanimate objects.
The second part of the film, in fact the final 20 minutes, is a real bloody bacchanalia. “Home alone 18+,” as one of our colleagues correctly noted. John Rambo sharpens the famous knife, makes cartridges, strings a bow, builds traps, and then urgently invites the Mexican cartel to visit him. And in the most bloody manner, with blood, guts, brains, chopping off limbs and tearing off heads, he destroys the entire gang, naturally, leaving its leader for last. It seems that the first 70 minutes of the film are needed only to justify this bloody madness.
If the authors wanted to complete the series by making Last Blood a reflection of First Blood, then they failed. In the first film, Rambo kills only one person, and then almost by accident. First Blood primarily raises the problem of soldiers returning from war and unable to find their place in civilian life. What issue does Last Blood raise? That a soldier remains a soldier for life? Why don’t people change? That people like Rambo shouldn’t hope for a peaceful old age?
It’s hard to say what Adrian Grunberg and Sylvester Stallone wanted to film. The film does not look like a psychological drama; the characters and dialogues are very formulaic. As an action movie, only the last 20 minutes of the film are good. Rambo: Last Blood is stuck between two worlds, never becoming a part of either of them.
However, I wouldn’t dare call the picture completely bad. Still, Sylvester Stallone is the actor of my youth, and I really respect some of his works, the same Rocky, for example. In general, Rambo: Last Blood seemed to me to be the actor’s farewell not only to his favorite character, but also to the action genre as a whole. And although it would be more honest to leave Rambo, who has finished his earthly affairs, in that rocking chair on the threshold of his house, the authors decided otherwise, and Rambo, as befits action heroes, saddles his horse and rides off into the sunset.
Yes, I know that Sylvester Stallone is not actually going to retire yet. The actor himself hinted at the possibility of continuing Rambo if the fifth part is successful; besides, The Expendables 4 is already in the works. Sly is not going anywhere. But honestly, Creed II and Rambo: Last Blood feel a lot like goodbyes. Goodbye Sly, we will miss you.
Rambo: Last Blood can hardly be called a good film, but it can be watched at least out of respect for the career of Sylvester Stallone