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(Review originally written at 11 April 2008)

Rambo returns to the battlefield, were he feels most at home and is most of use. He gets send on a top-secret operation to bring back POW's still held in Vietnam.

Dumb, big, overblown action movies really don't get any better than this! It's therefor shameful that his movie currently has a mere 5.5 rating on here. This movie is a true '80's action classic. Although yes, I admit I have always had a weak spot for Rambo and Rocky movies, perhaps because they are so overblown and quite silly once you start thinking more about it but yet always manage to work out so well.

The movie is actually quite in contrast with the previous first Rambo movie; "First Blood". In that movie in fact hardly any soul died, while in this movie Rambo is on one big killing spree. Rambo shows his killing spirit again, when he returns to Vietnam, that is often described in this movie as his 'home'. He is one of those persons who lives and should die on the battlefield and isn't much good for much else. This is what also got him in trouble in the first Rambo movie. It's this movie and the other sequels that made Rambo a synonym for action and killing. A true one man army, while the first movie was a much more personal and restrained movie with its main character. You understood the character while now instead you have a tough character simply running and shooting on everything that is moving. It's a sort of shame that they didn't developed the Rambo character any further from the same perspective as in the first movie. But oh well, than we wouldn't had the big overblown Rambo character we know today and Sylvester Stallone is so well known for.

The story is this time written by Sylvester Stallone himself and none other than James Cameron, who worked on the screenplay before getting fame as the director/writer of "The Terminator". However this doesn't also mean this movie has a good story. In fact if you start over-analyzing it, it's pretty poor all, so lets just simply not do so. This is not an action movie that's a bout its story. if you want an action movie with content you should stick to watching the first Rambo movie.

Of course not only the Vietnamese but also the Russians get involved because after all this movie got made during the cold war. A theme that also often returned in several Sylvester Stallone flicks, as if he fought his personal own cold war during that time.

It's mostly this movie that shows why Sylvester Stallone is one of the biggest action heroes that ever lived. He is tough, has big muscles, knows how to handle guns and smaller weapons such as his knife and good old bow & arrow. This is however not Sylvester Stallone's finest acting moment tough, while he was still rather good in the first Rambo movie. But I don't really think that this movie its story allowed any of its actors to shine in it. The movie also features Steven Berkoff, who always knows to play the sort of ultimate Russian villain, even though he himself is British. Richard Crenna also reprises his role again from the first movie.

The action is nice and big and is what makes this movie such a fine one to watch, especially of course when you're into the genre. The movie is directed who was an action movie specialist, even though his movies were often of questionable quality, except for "Tombstone", which was his finest moment, even though its debatable how much of that movie he actually directed.

The movie is being uplifted even more by the musical score. It's Jerry Goldsmith's best score for a Rambo movie and a true fine piece of action scoring. Too bad they didn't turned up the music volume some more in this movie.

A real likable '80's action flick.

8/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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