Believe me, I’m a fan of the franchise movie as much as anybody but can this please be the end of John Rambo? Rambo, Last Blood should really have been named John Rambo, 1,000 Ways to Die a Gruesome Death! Stallone still looks good with a stylish haircut, and moves good, don’t get me wrong, but it’s a little tired after so long and we already know what’s going to happen. You unleash Rambo, people die screaming.
The movie plot is good. There is a lot more dialog this time, we get to know a little bit more of his story. We know that Rambo has settled on his farm with his extended family, is taking medication and fighting his own personal demons. He lives with his housekeeper and niece who is bound for college. She’s a lovely girl, played by Yvette Monreal, whom we find out has been looking for her absentee father who turns out to be a bad character and living in Mexico. And even though she was told explicitly not to seek him out, of course she goes anyway. Drives across the border like she’s going to Starbucks. They meet, she is quickly disappointed by his response, quickly sold out by her “friend” to a pimp, who just as quickly gets her strung out on drugs. She becomes part of a ring using kidnapped girls as prostitutes. So sad.
Rambo discovers what happens when Gabrielle does not return home that night and goes to find her in Mexico. He is helped by a journalist played by Paz Vega, who is looking for her sister who suffered the same fate. John confronts these criminals, Hugo and Victor, and suffers a severe beating and is cut by the ringleader. A “V” is cut into his cheek and a similar “V” is cut into Gabrielle’s face as punishment. He is rescued by Carmen who helps him locate the home base of these thugs and the carnage begins.
In these types of movies, it never pays to be a henchman. I think there is some school where they learn everything except when to leave after 20 or 30 of your fellow henchmen die! Know when to get out. Rambo delivers in true Rambo form during the rescue of his niece. He is unable to free any of the other girls who are too afraid to leave but does liberate Gabrielle who dies on the way home. John is heartbroken that he was unable to save her and returns home to plan his revenge. And by the way, you never see ONE authority figure? Where are the police?
He spends time rigging his farm house and connecting tunnels underground while waiting for the bad guys to show up. Again, they drive across the border and onto the farm like it’s nothing. This is the part of the Rambo franchise we like, his creative and well executed traps, thorough and final deaths. If Rambo is looking at you, say goodbye. Multiple stab wounds and decapitation. Blown up and lit on fire. Step in a trap with pointy sticks from the bottom and sides. Shot with giant bullets that explode in your body. Impaled by arrows and gutted with your heart cut out. And don’t forget, squeezing your shoulder until the thumb goes into your skin and breaking bones. I had to close my eyes a couple of times. Yikes.
All in all, it was pretty good for a Rambo movie but I think that should be it. Rambo did ride off into the sunset on his horse but he was severely wounded but you know what they say . . . unless you actually see the dead body, he’s not really dead!! Good Movie worth the matinee price and snacks. We love you Rambo!! And henchmen, rethink your job choice. I’m just saying.