Rambo Last Blood: Reality vs Fiction


Since he first filled our screens with muscled
manliness in 1982, John J. Rambo has transformed from a haunted veteran to a one-man army who
is lampooned as much as he is loved. Now, 37 years since his journey started, the Green
Beret [beh-ray] is returning to close his story once and for all… as a cowboy. But did you know that everything about Rambo,
from his sweatband to his unusual name, is rooted in reality? And between the explosions
and the arrows, he’s a much more plausible character than you probably think… Washington D.C.’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial
wall was built and dedicated in 1982, one month after First Blood was released. If you
read line 126 of panel 16W, you’ll find the name “Arthur J. Rambo”. b) Arthur John Rambo was an army sergeant
who received the Silver Star for his service in Vietnam. Unlike the movies’ John Rambo,
Arthur never returned home. He was killed on 26th November 1969 in Tay Ninh [day ninn].
His grave is in Libby Cemetery in Montana. Arthur was one of many Vietnam casualties
who inspired author David Morell [More-ELL] to write First Blood in 1972, a psychological
thriller about a Vietnam veteran who suffers from PTSD and is ignored by society. In the
book, Rambo – just Rambo, no first name – snaps and goes on a murderous rampage that ends
in his death. Disappointingly, David Morell picked the name
“Rambo” from Rambo apples, because he liked the sound of it. The apples are named
after Peter Gunnarsson Rambo who sailed from Sweden to America in the 1640s. The name ‘Rambo’
actually comes from the term for “a person who lives in Ramberget”, which is Swedish
for “Raven Hill”. So, literally, Rambo’s name means “raven resident”. I dunno, do you think that makes him more
or less cool? Tell me in the poll above! Although the movie version of Rambo is less
homicidal and actually survives, his almost superhuman survival skills are pretty standard
for America’s elite Green Berets. After all, their unofficial motto is “improvise,
adapt and overcome” – just like Rambo is self-sufficient throughout the movies. This is because Green Berets go through two
years of intense training to specialise in “unconventional warfare”. This prepares
them for missions deep in hostile foreign countries, performing counter-terrorism, hostage
rescue and narcotics raids. They’re trained to be able to use virtually
every weapon in existence. So Rambo really would be able to pick up any gun and use it.
He’d also be capable of escaping police officers quite easily. In fact, the filmmakers
brought in a Navy SEAL to show Stallone how to break free from a gang hold – and the SEAL
laid out the actors on set in the process. Yes, including David Caruso. [CRASH ZOOM ON
GINGER CARUSO, WITH CSI SCREAM] Also like Rambo, special forces still use
bows and arrows. A lot of their missions occur at night, and arrows are perfect for stealth
fighting. I’m not sure how many explosive tips they have in real life, though. A lot of Green Berets are pretty big fellas,
too. They can typically bench-press twice their body weight. They’re also allowed
to grow their hair out, unlike the regular army. So Rambo’s big shoulders and lanky
hair might look impractical, but it isn’t out of character for a Green Beret. However, that’s kind of where the similarities
end. Part of the reason Green Berets can grow their hair is so that they can adapt to local
culture. This is because their traditional function is to train foreign armies, so that
America’s allies can have their own elite forces to fight common enemies. Their official
motto is “De Oppresso Liber” [day op-ress-oh lee-bare], which means “to free the oppressed”.
In other words, they help those who cannot fight for themselves. Then there’s Stallone’s massive muscles.
For First Blood Part II, he trained hard for eight months before filming. And during production,
he started and ended each day with a two to three-hour workout. Real, active duty Green
Berets simply don’t have time for that. As one Green Beret told 60 Minutes, “”We’re
definitely not Rambo, you know?” But in many other ways, Stallone’s Rambo
does accurately represent the PTSD plight of Vietnam vets. Ignored and overlooked by society, a lot of
soldiers returning from Vietnam were met with scorn by a society sick of the seemingly pointless
war they were fighting. The government didn’t give them the plethora of benefits that World
War Two veterans received, like healthcare and education support. Stallone’s performance,
with his hollow eyes and taciturn expression, is a pretty good approximation of a shell-shocked
soldier who endured torture as a POW, and who therefore doesn’t understand why the
world doesn’t appreciate his sacrifices. This is what makes First Blood’s concluding
scene so moving. Stallone’s emotional breakdown is based on the real turmoil experienced by
veterans. To help achieve this, Stallone wrote the speech himself, based on twenty or so
different ideas and true stories, and combined into one tragic tale of his comrade in Baker
Team. Although, just to be pedantic, real special
forces squads are called names like “ODA 7215”. A lot less catchy than “Baker Team”. The sequels slowly moved away from the ‘broken
man’ theme and got increasingly cartoonish. But as a co-writer on every film, Stallone
made sure to tie each plot to real politics. For instance, it was Stallone’s idea to
set the fourth movie in Myanmar (my-an-marr OR m-yan-marr). He wanted to raise awareness
of the civil war between the Myanmar military and Karen rebels, which has lasted 70 years
and counting. He even cast a real Karen rebel as the bad guy. And real victims of landmines
as the amputee villagers. Unsurprisingly, the movie is banned throughout Myanmar. The third movie’s political ambitions worked
against it, because it was badly timed. In the film, Rambo teams up with Mujahideen [moo-ja-huh-deen]
to fight Soviets in Afghanistan. But it was released literally ten days after the Soviets
pulled out of Afghanistan as part of their peacemaking process with the USA. Since then,
the Mujahideen have been implicated in terror attacks like 9/11 – forcing Stallone to change
the dedication at the end of the movie. Not everyone has liked this political approach.
On the second movie, co-writer James Cameron – yes, him – said, “I was trying to create
a semi-realistic, haunted character, the quintessential Vietnam returnee, not a political statement.”” Vietnam veterans agreed. Across cities like
San Francisco and Cambridge, Massachusetts, vets protested screenings of First Blood Part
II. The Veterans Speakers Alliance said, “Rambo does not represent real Vietnam veterans and
… presents a twisted glorification of combat that in no way imparts to the viewer any idea
of what the real horror and tragedy of war are like … We plan to ask Sylvester Stallone
to refrain from being a spokesperson for Vietnam vets.”” The fifth film, Last Blood, looks to revisit
an old idea Stallone had to involve Rambo in the world of illegal immigration across
the Mexican border. We’ll see how well he can handle such a sensitive topic through
a standard ‘save the girl’ plot. Still, it promises to continue the trademark
gritty violence and improvised traps that Rambo is known for. And arrows! As superhuman as Rambo has become, I don’t
think his creator would mind. That’s because David Morell was ultimately inspired by real-life
superhero Audie Murphy [or-dee mer-fee]. During World War Two he won literally every combat
medal available in America, and had a successful Hollywood career afterwards. He used his fame
to raise awareness of his own PTSD and campaigned on behalf of Vietnam veterans until he died
in a plane crash in 1971. So if you’re looking for the real Rambo,
look no further. Are you excited for Last Blood? Do you think
it can bring a fitting close to Rambo’s story? Let me know in the comments below! I’ve been Georgia, thanks for watching Alltime
Movies, and see you next time!

58 Replies to “Rambo Last Blood: Reality vs Fiction

  1. A relative of Arthur J. Rambo will appear as a contestant on the Swedish TV-show Allt for Sverige, Robert Rambo. He is a war veteran from North Carolina.

  2. …Stallone should do a Prequel movie! It should start with him at Arlington cemetary visiting Col. Trautmans grave and it flashbacks to the 60s…with Milo Ventimiligio playing young Rambo during his green beret days. Last Blood ending felt like there was a chance Rambo still lived.

  3. Rambo is not based on just one person, sure this actual soldier is a good example but so is many other Green Beret Vietnam Vets. The movie is based on the experience of many and all soldiers coming home facing the aftermath of war and the PTSD that plague their life. And Rambo is also based on the primordial human instincts we all have for survival. RAMBO is a fantasy action adventure. It's not real and barely any truth behind it at all. It took inspirations from a variety of areas, namely the book. Not just ONE person.

  4. You should read about the life of Audie Murphy after the end of world war 2, its not a easy story to read. Now this was the most decorated service man in American history and ended up almost homeless and sleeping in a gym at one point. That show how much the America people and the government cared about his service.

  5. I was a fan of the first Rambo movie but then read an article of how Stallone's Father sent him to school in Switzerland to keep him from being drafted and sent to Vietnam. Now look at all the money this jerk has made off representing Vietnam Vet's.

  6. There was a documentary about US Army SF produced by Rasha Drakovictz in the 90s featured in Discovery Channel. There was a NCO named Rambo interviewed in that documentary and he was an active duty soldier with a rank of Master Sergeant then.

  7. Enjoy the movies but read the book too.
    When he escaped the jail he was buck azz naked seeing he was being “cleaned” at the time. The six deputies were killed. Troutman was as screwed up in the head as John Rambo.

  8. I like all Rambo movies. The truth is guy like Rambo will not last 1 day in Vietnam jungle. Just asked 50,000 or more guys like Rambo.

  9. Btw the Carin rebels (definitely spelled that wrong) use the saying live for something, or die for nothing as a war cry

  10. It's good to now that there's a person that was in Vietnam war with the name Rambo. It is sad to now he was killed there.

  11. the Vietnam Vets I met didn't like Rambo First Blood Part 2 and Rambo 3 but they loved the message at the end of First Blood Part 2. Also, I've talk to a lot of Vietnam vets about the fourth movie Rambo. They all said that it is the closest any movie had regarding the horrors of War.

  12. I don't think Stallone gives af ,,I'll watch all his Rambo movies but not the Rocky anymore,,he's went beyond culture with that

  13. Pretty much everything this woman says is simply wrong.

    According to Morrell, Rambo was named after some french wine and not after some unknown Vietnam-casualty.

  14. You might imagine my astonishment when I found an old hunting licence from 1962 with the name R. Rambo who was my dads cousin so yea Rambo is an actual name

  15. First blood is the best! 2nd is alright and the 4th when he is in Burma is different and also alright. New one I haven't seen.

  16. In the Second 'RAMBO' book the author brings out more of the backstory which was totally missed in the 2nd Rambo film--he part American Indian–in the book (metaphor) being part American Indian allows the reader to add additional understanding of the Character RAMBO- not only misunderstood, ignored and mistreated as a vast # of the only REAL AMERICANS are (AMERICAN INDIANS)..
    There were other small parts in the second book which I expected would be in the second film, but weren't—-RAMBO in his single cell in America, looking at some faded photos of his friends whom had served with him and died in 'Nam.

    Story has him striking a match, setting the photos on fire & dropping them into a hole in the floor which was his toliet..

    Not film and BIG MISTAKE…Stallone didn't serve in America's Service but I think he regrets it..

  17. Audie Murphy should have been taught in public school system.
    The Citizen Soldier is beyond political parties,
    Love for your countrymen and women and for your country should still mean something.
    This coming from a Democrat 🇺🇸🙏 believe in the Constitution❤

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