Film Review: Rambo: Last Blood

10:00 September 23, 2019
By: David Vicari

Rambo: Last Blood, the fifth - and hopefully final - installment of the First Blood/Rambo film series, literally has a caravan of armed Mexican cartel sex traffickers coming across the border to kill Rambo. Adding blatant xenophobia to what is supposed to be an escapist action movie is rather troubling.

Setting that aside and looking at Last Blood as simply an action movie, this is pretty generic junk. It's like someone took an old, yellowing, by-the-numbers screenplay and added the name "Rambo" in place of the hero's original name.I mean, it doesn't even seem like Sylvester Stallone is actually playing the character of John Rambo. He lives on an Arizona ranch and is raising his teenage niece (Yvette Monreal) as if she was his own daughter. Does that sound like something that Vietnam War veteran and killing machine Rambo would do in his later years? Improbable at best. At least Rambo III (1988) is somewhat plausible when it opens with the troubled character living with Buddhist monks in Bangkok.

Anyhow, his niece goes to Mexico to find her deadbeat dad, but ends up being captured by sex traffickers. So, it's Rambo to the rescue, but is he too late? Well, he can always pull the revenge card, which he predictably does.

Last Blood is incredibly dull despite being overloaded with horror movie-style gore. Yes, Rambo pulls the still beating heart out of a bad guy's chest. That is funny in an Itchy & Scratchy cartoon, but here in a live-action movie it's gross and gives the impression that the main character - you know, the hero - has truly and without a doubt gone off the psychotic deep end.

The finale of the movie takes place in underground tunnels where Rambo takes out henchmen with booby traps and a variety of weapons. This sequence goes on forever. I just wanted it to end, just like I want this series to end. Please, let this truly be Last Blood.

★ ½ (out of four)

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