Almost forty years after the debut of Rambo, the franchise comes to a supposed conclusion with Rambo: Last Blood. Promising to differentiate, in part, from the three previous sequences, replete with explosive shootings, one would expect a return to the origins, mirroring aspects of the original by Ted Kotcheff. However, here this is confused as a trip to the generic, betting on a limited imaginary that does not manage to explore the conflicts and traumas that the character carries with him and, because of that, turning him into just another vindictive brucutu interpreted by Sylvester Stallone, watch now the movie and see if he did a good work this time.
Like the fourth chapter, Rambo: Last Blood seeks to exalt the heroism of its protagonist through the effect of comparison with scenes of exploratory violence, suffered here by his protégé Gabriela (Yvette Monreal) at the hands of the villains who kidnap her. In the worst tradition of revenge cinema, with repetitive scenes of physical violence and sexual abuse directed at women, Stallone's own script with Matthew Cirulnick seems to emulate a lost chapter of the Desire to Kill series, in which the final catharsis of retribution is associated with the volume of violence suffered by loved ones.
If Implacable Search relieved such erroneous aspects with a fast pace and better distributing their struggles, this still shows that he wants to play in the same playground as Logan and Gran Torino, but without the same sensitivity and good performances to sustain the drama. Much time is spent with its protagonist in a passive position while Gabriela is reduced to the target of numerous violence. In addition, the parade of stereotypes, especially of Mexicans, suggests how dubious the intentions of the “tape” are, a coherent term since it could easily be launched on the home-video market decades ago. Only good action scenes can be saved, but watch online the movie by yourself so that you can judge it.
Unfortunately, with the exception of a fight with hammers, any beating that is noticed is reserved for the last minutes of Rambo: Last Blood, as a quick enjoyment, and not that elongated that is expected. However, not even the brief climax at Rambo's armed ranch reaches its potential under the weak direction of Adrian Grunberg (from the very superior Escape Plan), who uses a frantic and choppy chopping of plans, sometimes referring to the infamous Olivier Megaton, who in Relentless Search 3 had its grace achieved by sewing a dozen Liam Neeson plans by jumping over a single fence. That said, Grunberg manages to find the right intensity in the gore of the latest deaths.
The question remains: why not make this a one-location movie? If three-quarters of the plot is conducted in such generic lines, with heroes, villains and simple-minded victims, nothing of its essence is necessary to sell John Rambo's motivations in his revenge against the cartel. Failing to learn from John Wick's simplicity, and obviously without the same ability to sustain long action scenarios, Stallone and Cirulnick do not see that their initial and final acts were all that Until the End needed to mesh. Like Duro de Matar or even Forgot Me, the ranch could host a game that is still bloody, but much more tense and methodical of cat and mouse.
The impression remains that the character was not the only one who got lost in this stew of conventions. Rambo: Last Blood is a dear example of the importance of knowing your place. The previous three features, although somewhat coarse, embraced brainless violence without trying to legitimize it at all times. In an attempt to become serious in the portrait of this violence, without sacrificing the exaggerated gore at the end, the film creates a paradox with itself and only accentuates its setback. In other words, their last moments must sound out of place to spectators, if they are not already completely bored by the scarcity of action that precedes them.
Apparently, Stallone wants to conquer the title of last action hero so much, as if to attest that “no more films are made like this”, which fails to notice that this kind of tape has only evolved, with a variety of talented filmmakers and protagonists that today are more contemplated by the home-video market than on the big screen. If Rambo: Last Blood aimed to be a swan song for this type of action hero in theaters, he could at least have looked forward and reprogrammed him for the new times. Unfortunately, what could be John Rambo's final triumph is only his last and boring lament.