Touted to be the final film from the franchise, Rambo: Last Blood will see Sylvester Stallone return for one last mission.
Only this time it is personal. Rambo may have come to terms with himself, and found home and family, but he’s not settled. He finds that life is its own kind of fight and despite being home, he is still at the mercy of events beyond his control – Sylvester Stallone.
Almost four decades after he drew first blood, Sylvester Stallone is back as one of the greatest action heroes of all time, John Rambo.
Since its debut nearly four decades ago, the Rambo series starring Sylvester Stallone has become one of the most iconic action-movie franchises of all time.
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An ex-Green Beret haunted by memories of Vietnam, the legendary fighting machine known as Rambo has freed prisoners of war, rescued his commanding officer from the Soviets, and liberated missionaries in Myanmar.
In Rambo: Last Blood, John must confront his past and unearth his ruthless combat skills for one final mission. A deadly journey of vengeance, Rambo: Last Blood marks the last chapter of the legendary series.
On home turf
The film picks up the character’s epic saga, as we find Rambo settled down, and living a quiet life on his family’s sprawling ranch in Arizona, sharing his home with his adoptive family; Maria and her granddaughter Gabriela.
“We are taking a ten-year leap forward since we last saw Rambo,” confirms Stallone. “He has long been removed from society but now seems to want to become a part of it. He’s been accepted into a family he loves, and wants to take care of them.”
For Sylvester Stallone, returning to Rambo was an opportunity to explore some unexpected facets of the character, while retaining much of what has defined him.
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“Rambo had been so isolated for so many years, and now he’s part of a family,” he explains. “That dynamic helps you really understand how he thinks and what makes him tick. This film is more personal.”
Talking further about his character, Stallone adds, “One of the worst dilemma, diseases, that strikes mankind is loneliness, isolation, abandonment. There is nothing you would not do to sacrifice yourself for the pursuit of love – it’s like you’re going into a burning building. So that’s what I’m trying to convey – that even Rambo cannot be alone, he really needs human contact, he needs love.”
Even with Gabby and Maria’s support, and a successful business and a stable home life, Rambo remains, at heart, a wounded warrior – a living example of the old saying, you can’t go home again. War always finds John Rambo, even if he isn’t seeking it.
“Rambo may have come to terms with himself and found home and family, but he’s not settled,” explains Stallone. “There’s no real comfort in his life at the ranch; his body is there, but his mind isn’t.
He never wants to leave the ranch. He can’t get past the PTSD, and everything else he cannot reign in. Rambo finds that life is its own kind of fight and despite being home, he is still at the mercy of events beyond his control.”
The final chapter
Helping Rambo navigate the perils of being a veteran a series of labyrinthian tunnels and a bunker under the ranch were created.
The tunnels are among the lingering aftershocks from his time in combat and his more recent missions. Stallone says they serve as a kind of “therapy indicated for momentary lapses of war that Rambo experiences.”
The sequence is marked by a mix of spectacle, rapid-fire action, and savage and merciless executions. “You don’t see Rambo with two rocket launchers in each hand, blowing helicopters out of the sky, like he’s done in some of the previous films,” says producer Les Weldon.
“This is the Rambo we met in First Blood, grounded in reality. This is a Rambo that is going back to his roots,” he adds.