on 17 August 2005
This version is NOT full widescreen, as the sides of the picture are chopped off. It is not Dolby 5.1 either. Buy the Stallone Rambo Trilogy by Artisan instead, currently the best trilogy DVD set available - from amazon.com (cheapest). If you aren't as technically fussy as me, then please ignore. Enjoy!
on 4 October 2007
These films have certainly been panned over the years, especially the last two films. But usaully the critics doing the panning have no interest or knowledge of the action film genre. Ok so they are not going to win any oscars for their acting or scripts but for slam bang action pure & simple you cant go wrong. They are certainly alot better than the rubbish Seagel and Van Damme churn out. They are also well filmed. The helicopter attack on the village and the Afgan horsemen charging the Russian army in Rambo 3 are two scenes in particular that come to mind. So if you want an afternoon(or evening)of great action these are the movies for you!
on 26 September 2007
The first film, First Blood, was excellent and believable. John Rambo returns from an unpopular war (Vietnam) to find no work, no friends and a country who frankly shunned veterans. Rambo gets into trouble with the local Sheriff and is duely hunted through mountainous woodland. They've picked the wrong man to hunt however, as Rambo is a special forces soldier who quickly turns the tables on his hunters. Enter the national guard who swamp the whole area. Rambo escapes and exacts his revenge on the town Sheriff in a memorable machine gun fest. Rambo is captured and the trilogy continues.
In the second film we find Rambo sent to establish whether POW's are still being held in Vietnam. The third film sees him helping his old boss carry weapons into Afghanistan to help the Mujahaddin fight the Russkies. The second/third films are all action stuff, but lack the story of the original film.
Good set, however and recommended.
on 20 August 2009
The first one was better but it's overall a must see. Good Action Movie.
Plus a good 9 min. Interview with Sly from 2008. He talks about all 4 Movies.
The Blue Ray has only DVD Quality.
For all Germans like me: Deutsche Sprache dabei. Und das engl.Interview mit Sly hat dt.Untertitel.
"Rambo: First Blood Part 2" (1985) is a violent action film, written by Sylvester Stallone and James Cameron. Here, Stallone reprises his role as John Rambo, an ex-special forces Vietnam veteran who's suffering from post-traumatic stress as a consequence of the War. This film is a sequel to the original 'First Blood' movie (based on the bestselling novel by David Morrell), and it's set a few years after the events depicted in that earlier film (which ended with Rambo being detained by the authorities, following the mayhem he caused after going on the run from the police) .
This second instalment in the movie series opens with Rambo being released from prison - on the condition that he undertakes a covert mission for the CIA. He's tasked with secretly entering Vietnam and taking photos of any remaining American POW's at an old (supposedly abandoned) camp. Rambo agrees - but isn't satisfied with photos. He finds POW's and rescues one ... only the CIA don't like this eventuality, and it's decided to leave Rambo behind enemy lines. Rambo's captured and tortured. Yet he manages to escape, battles the Vietnam soldiers (and the Soviet ones also stationed there), rescues the POW's and then flies to an American base across the border.
For its time, this was an intense action movie - and even today (over 30 years later) the action sequences hold up. Rambo is depicted as, quite literally, a one-man army - capable of enduring horrendous tortures, refusing to break, and always ready to fight back. When enraged, he's unstoppable.
This is one of the most popular of Stallone's films. Okay, its plot is fairly simple and straightforward. Yet this movie was a defining element in 1980's Western popular culture. If you're a fan of action films, I thoroughly recommend it. It helps to have watched "First Blood", but that isn't essential. This Blu-ray edition presents very good video and audio quality - but, unfortunately, there are few extras. Just to say, a Blu-ray box set of all four Rambo films is available.
This 3 disc collection brings together the first three Rambo films starring Sylvester Stallone into one easy package. For the same money you can now buy the 4 film box set, with better mastering and sound, I would recommend looking at that in preference to this.
First Blood: the original, and in my opinion, the best. It is a thoughtful and well put together film which examines the attitudes of America to its returning Vietnam veterans. John Rambo is drifting around until he meets Brian Dennehey's tough sherriff, who sets out on a personal mission to drive Rambo out of town. Pushed too far by the police, Rambo snaps and goes on the run, using all his survival expertise to deter those hunting him until he decides finally to take explosive vengeance on the town that broke him. It has its fair share of big action set pieces and lots of shots of Sly hitting, shooting and stabbing things, but it is essentially an excellent character study of one man pushed to his limit and another man's obsession. It also does not live up to its violent reputation, Rambo only kills one person, and that is by accident.
First Blood 2 - Here the series starts to get silly. Rambo is asked to go on a deniable black op into Vietnam in peacetime to suss out a camp where some American soldiers might still be held even after the cease of hostilities years before. Cue Rambo's one man mission to rescue the soldiers against all the odds after he is cut off by his duplicitous superior. There are lots of explosions as he blows up anything he can and kills everything that moves. It's big, loud, daft, and a whole lot of fun. Stallone tries to put in some character study, but this movie is all about the big bangs and the body count.
First Blood 3 - Rambo goes off on a one man mission to save his old boss, Colonel Troutman, from nasty Russian types in the depths of Afghanistan. As with First Blood 2, this film is all about big bangs and body counts as Rambo wreaks havoc all around, managing to save the Colonel and singlehandedly winning the war against the Russkies for the Mujahadin in the process. It's very very silly (especially the helicopter/tank duel) but very well shot big action adventure that really entertains.
All in all a good box set with two silly but entertaining films and one more serious and actually very worthy film. But you’re better off looking up the 4 film set.
on 5 June 2007
I hadn't seen a Rambo movie in over twelve or more years. My brother caught ten minutes of Rambo 3 on TV and commented on how directly Hot Shots Part Deux is based on it. It sparked an interest in me so I watched the three movies again.
Part one (four stars) is a perfectly good action film. Not too silly, not too over the top and quite dramatic. Strange to see a young David Caruso playing a sheriff in it. I liked it a lot although the ending isn't up to the quality of the rest of the film.
On my Region 1 DVD from 1998 the picture is a bit too dark in some scenes. The extras show some clips that are clearer and brighter than in the movie itself.
Part two (three stars) plods along enjoyably. Only gets way too silly towards the end. I liked it, but it's not anything special. Though it was better than I remembered it to be. The action isn't particularly well filmed but decent enough if you're undemanding.
The picture quality is sometimes very soft, almost out of focus, but I think that's a deliberate decision by the cinematographer.
The first two movies both have an unusual structure. The first forty minutes or so come to a definite climax. Then the story continues, but in effect the movies reset and follow a second, almost unrelated story to what has gone before. It's almost like two short movies bolted together. (eg. First film - Rambo defeats the sheriffs. Second part, the sheriffs call in the national guard. Second film - Rambo completes his mission but doesn't get picked up. Second part, he escapes from captivity).
Part three (two stars) is not very good. Forgetting the politics and concentrating on the movie, it has to be said that it doesn't really work. I've heard that when it was made, it was the most expensive movie ever filmed. It's a shame that it doesn't look all that expensive. A few extras in a barren desert with two or three helicopters and tanks does not make it look like $60 million was splashed about. Also the original director Russell Mulchey (he made Highlander) walked out/was fired after a few days of shooting. The replacement director was a uninspired hack who no one has ever heard of before or since.
Take my advice and skip the first 45 minutes. It's all dull, almost actionless, set up that could have been covered with a written text message or a few minutes of montages.
The ending is very stupid and unimpressive with Stallone and Crenna in a small crevice taking on a large Russian army until they're rescued by the Afghanistan freedom fighters (Taliban?).
You can criticise the movie extensively but as a generic dumb 80's action flick, it just about works as mindless entertainment once Stallone gets into the Russian fortress.
All three movies end with truly terrible 80's ballads sung with very manly voices.
Some reviewers of this edition say it's not in widescreen. I've some DVDs that claim to be widescreen but play in fullscreen. Sometimes if you go to the set up screen on your DVD player and change the picture mode to 16:9 then the movie will be displayed in the correct widescreen mode from then on?
I also watched Hot Shots Part Deux again (four stars). It's plot is an amalgamation of the second and third movie. Very funny but not vicious enough on the Rambo movies. Extra points though for getting Crenna to parody his own signature role. Strangely my DVD (the Region 2 two pack with the first movie) has a scene missing from it - the back-seat of the limo love scene with the driver going to extreme lengths to watch the couple he's driving.
on 25 December 2012
Typical of the character played by Sylvester Stallone, plenty of action and explosions.
Recommend you buy this film and be entertained.
on 4 July 2012
Film itself is good just how i remembered it, the quality is good but nothing to shout home about, the transfer to Blu-ray is not that good probably of DVD quality. I purchased all four of the Rambo films and the quality does get better in each Blu-ray. A good buy though.
on 9 January 2015
Three years after the ohe, ginal, the follow up was inevitable, this time John Rambo (Stallone who co-wrote with James Cameron, yes the "Titanic" director), is pardoned and released by his Commanding officer, Colonel Samuel Trautman (Richard Crenna), who informs Rambo of a rescue mission that only a select few are capable of completing - Rambo being the obvious choice.
Now in Vietnam (in reality it was Mexico, Vietnam had doubled for), where Rambo gets acquainted with the top members overseeing the operation, led by Marshal Murdock (Charles Napier), soon after Rambo is assigned to head to a prison camp to take pictures then he and the hostages are going to be rescued.
The mission goes wrong very quickly with Rambo losing his weaponry (and nearly his life) in flight, he gets away, then meets up with agent Co Bao (Julia Nickson) who assists him throughout, they fight alongside each other - even after Rambo is captured and escapes.
Now at loggerheads with each other Murdock and Trautman reluctantly work alongside each other - not helped when Rambo is tortured by Lt Col Podovsky (Steven Berkoff), who leads the command post where Rambo is imprisoned.
Escaping and seeking sanctuary, Rambo and Bao share a few tender moments together - until Bao is gunned down by Tay (George Kee Cheung), one of Podovsky's lead soldiers - who is in turn killed by Rambo : avenging Bao's death.
Rambo takes hold of a helicopter after killing the pilot and Yushin (Voyo Goric), Podovsky's lead henchman, literally destroying enemies and rescuing hostages - Rambo and Podovsky face each other in their aircraft, until Rambo obliterates Podovsky's helicopter with him and his crew with a rocket launcher.
Then Murdock is confronted by Rambo, then Trautman questions the latter on what his motives are for fighting - and its for his fellow servicemen gaining some form of recognition and not much else.
Rambo 2 isn't a bad movie, but its the first of two to have Russians as the baddies (partly in this film - 3rd one being the next), and some plot holes also - unless I've missed something, it doesn't explain why Rambo was double crossed.
I like this movie, along with the others, but if its any of the four that are my favourites, is the first and the 2007 movie - the boxset is the one to buy, as all four discs have the main feature and various documentaries on the history on all 4 movies.