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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 5 June 2016
"First Blood" (1982) is a action film with psychological undercurrents. It stars Sylvester Stallone as John Rambo, one of the defining roles if his acting career. It's a popular movie, and inspired three sequels. This first film in the saga is based on a bestselling novel, by David Morrell, which - in the midst of an action storyline - explores some of the difficulties faced by soldiers returning home to the USA after fighting in Vietnam, and the post traumatic stress suffered. The book introduced Rambo - although it was this film series that turned the character into a global phenomenon.

The film concerns John Rambo, who's living as a vagrant, being picked up by local police in a small town in rural America. The police don't particularly like Rambo's looks or attitude. In turn, Rambo doesn't seem to care about what the police think ... He's arrested, and while being detained is mistreated by some of the officers. During a moment of flashback - to an ordeal during the Vietnam War, when he was tortured - Rambo gets mad, fights the police officers and escapes. Hiding in the nearby mountains, Rambo is pursued by the police. It's then that the police learn that Rambo is an elite warrior - an ex-special forces soldier who's trained to evade capture, survive in the wilderness, and kill the enemy using any tactics. Ultimately, the police utterly fail to apprehend Rambo - and so now the military join-in the manhunt, led by Rambo's former commanding officer Colonel Sam Trautman. In the final act of the film, Rambo destroys the local town - and then, persuaded by Trautman, gives himself up.

This is a violent film. Yet it's not violence for its own sake, merely to titillate. Rather, the storyline is handled in a serious manner - and Rambo's tortured psyche is explored (being clearly depicted in the final scene, when he suffers an emotional breakdown). This is as much a drama about a man being mistreated, and refusing to simply accept such mistreatment, as it is an action film. Stallone acts well, portraying the central protagonist in a meaningful way. He's brilliantly supported by both Richard Crenna and Brian Dennehy.

This is a defining film of the 1980's - inspiring a host of copy-cat movies. The Blu-ray edition presents excellent quality video and audio. Unfortunately, it has few special features.
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on 25 August 2016
People often ask me why review old films that we already know are great. Ill tell you why. Because I love films and to do a quick review enables me to show a bit of affection for the movies I have loved all my life. One of of them being First Blood amongst many many others.

This classic is a pefect example of a Vietnam vet movie in which the very troubled Green Beret is still struggling with the civilian world many years after the war ended. John Rambo is still fighting a war.....in his head.

First Blood is by far the best charecter Sylvester Stallone has created since Rocky Balboa, bringing a real sense of vulnerability and depth that most actors perhaps could not with this type of film. Yes John Rambo did change slightly with the second and third film but was back to basics in the fouth film which I think is way up there with First Blood and one of the best action films ever.

First Blood though is simply wonderful and more of a drama than an action film when you look deeper into it. Stallone does a cracking job acting with pure conviction to the role. The ending is brilliant where John Rambo breaks down releasing his demons to Col Trautman. Some of the best acting I think Sly has ever pulled off. That scene even brings a lump to my throat.

The flash backs to Nam are realistic and horrific when you seevRambo being cut across the chest. And the scene where Rambo picks up the smashed bloody dead body of the police officer bully who falls from the chopper onto the rocks below. Sly looks disturbed as he stares into the dead eyes of the cop, with the music used in the flash back scenes building. What I love about that scene is that we don't get to see the image in Rambo's mind but Slys face says it all. God only knows what is going on in Rambo's head.

From the very first scene with the opening Jerry Goldsmith theme to the end credits with the fairly cheesy 80's balad the film never really let's up. Everything works perfectly.

So if you don't own a copy of First Blood then the Bluray is the copy to get because it's loaded with informative extras. The steel book is a nice edition and the limited edition granada box set with all four films is an absolute must.

I'm slighty mad as I own all of the films on steel book, the grenade, the DVDs with the original art work and a VHS box set of Rambo 1-3 that is still sealed.

I keep hearing that Stallone is going to make a 5th Rambo film called Last Blood. How true it is I don't know but fingers crossed.
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on 26 April 2017
This review applies only to the single DVD version (ASIN:B000050YLX). The average bitrate is 5436kbps. Picture and sound are both very good - much better than the previous DVD I watched.

It's a great movies and the only one of the Rambo movies worth watching (even though First Blood Part II continues the story). There is a powerful storyline. It's not just mindless action/violence as you might expect.
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on 25 January 2016
The US import blu ray is region free, not Region A as stated on Amazon. It will play in the UK. Blu ray transfer is nice: colours pop and detail good, no overt signs of DNR. This import, unlike the UK version, has a commentary by Stallone, and a decent documentary. The original and easily the best!
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on 14 April 2017
Fantastic movie and still the best of the original three. This DVD version (with original theatrical poster) is the best because there is more commentaries and documentaries so more insightful for die hard fans. DVD arrived on time too. Recommended.
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on 14 January 2015
This is an exceptional film. When i first saw this i was expecting some action movie full of machismo but its not that at all. Its a really moving film and i was in tears by the end. So underrated and undervalued. nothing like the next few rambo movies
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on 29 June 2017
The original film and by far the best of the bunch.
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on 13 July 2017
top quality picture, great value
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on 29 April 2017
Excellent film
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on 19 July 2017
Just a great film!
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