Movie Update



I've just gotten back from seeing RAMBO. Now first of all, it seemed quite a short movie, so I looked it up and IMdB claims it has a running time of 91 mins. I saw the 9.30pm session at Northland and the ticket says "Session time 9.30-11.21pm". That makes sense. 20 mins of trailers and ads, film starts at 9.50, ands at 11.21pm. Except, I left at the end of the movie, just after the credits rolled, and I am typing this at 11.21pm. I left the cinema just after 11.00pm so I can only assume the credits for Rambo must be almost 20 minutes long!

Anyway, with that weirdness out of the way, yes it does seem like a short film. It stops almost prematurely and you leave the theatre without the "climactic" feeling that many action films deliver.

Was it a bad film? Not really. Surprisingly it was more a message film where Stallone as a director is letting the world know about the continuing genocide in the world's longest running civil war. He uses absolute ultra-violence to show people the reality of war, the impact of bullets ripping through bodies, and the total disregard for human life by the Burmese soldiers.

Was the gore simply an excuse for violent entertainment? Judging from the reaction of the very pro-Rambo crowd in the cinema with me, unlike other violent action films, they weren't cheering and clapping when the "baddies" got their just desserts, and there were no witty one-liners delivered to the camera after a villain got a bullet to the brain. It was war presented as war.

Did I enjoy the film? I don't think so. But I do feel a lot of compassion toward the plight of the Burmese now and on that level the film has probably achieved it's aim. According to several articles it looks like Stallone is personally embarking on an awareness campaign about Burma now that his film has focused world attention on the situation.

Of course, rating it as an excerise in movie-making is a different matter entirely. It certainly won't win any awards (except maybe for special effects!) and those who've followed the entire Rambo series will find this chart very interesting: (Click on it to enlarge)


By the way, Rambo 5 is on the way.