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First Blood (1982)

by on 2010/11/10

“I don’t think you understand. I didn’t come to rescue Rambo from you. I came here to rescue you from him.”

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Sylvester Stallone (Rocky) portrays John Rambo, a traumatized veteran of the Vietnam War.  Upon his arrival into a small town, its unsympathetic sheriff (Brian Dennehy) intends to drive the drifter out.  The resulting conflict escalates to the point that Rambo’s mentor (Richard Crenna) must intervene to defuse the situation.

A gritty, affecting film from a time before the name “Rambo” suggested bloodletting blockbusters.  Modest in scope and production values, First Blood relies on a strong story and characters, rather than pyrotechnics, to make its point.  Entertaining and insightful, it’s a sympathetic meditation on exploitation and hypocrisy, responsibility and humanity.  A sympathetic meditation that kicks ass when it needs to.

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Please note:  This review is a placeholder “stub” intended for future revision.

Rated R for language, nudity, and violence

93 minutes

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