Rambo (Rambo IV)

2008

Rambo (Rambo IV)

Critics Consensus

Sylvester Stallone knows how to stage action sequences, but the movie's uneven pacing and excessive violence (even for the franchise) is more nauseating than entertaining.

37%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 148

69%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 409,674
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Movie Info

When a group of missionary aid workers in Myanmar disappear into the vast green inferno, vigilante Vietnam War veteran John Rambo (Sylvester Stallone) leaves his job as a Salween River boatman behind to accompany a group of mercenaries on a daring rescue mission. It's been 20 years since Rambo helped mujahedeen rebels fend off Soviet invaders in Afghanistan, and these days the former soldier lives a simple life in northern Thailand. Meanwhile, the world's longest-running civil war rages into its 60th year on the nearby Thai-Burma border. One day, human rights missionaries Sarah Miller (Julie Benz) and Michael Burnett (Paul Schulze) show up asking Rambo to guide them up the Salween so they can get some much-needed food and medical supplies to the desperate Karen tribe. According to Sarah and Michael, the Burmese military has planted land mines all along the roads leading into the tribe's village, making it virtually impossible to reach the tribe via land. Two weeks after Rambo drops the group off in dangerous territory, pastor Arthur Marsh (Ken Howard) arrives with a chilling message: the aid workers never returned from their mission into the jungle, and the embassies refuse to help Marsh and his fellow missionaries find their missing friends. Now, despite the fact that Rambo has long since sworn off all forms of violence, the knowledge that innocent missionaries are being used as pawns in a brutal war leaves him with no other choice than to venture behind enemy lines on his most dangerous mission to date. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for Rambo (Rambo IV)

All Critics (148) | Top Critics (36)

  • The orgy of violence, as ghastly as in any video game, should go a long way toward erasing whatever goodwill Stallone earned with his sentimental Rocky Balboa.

    Dec 16, 2008 | Full Review…
  • Little more than a cartoon, Rambo caters only for those still smitten by the rat-a-tat of continuous gunfire.

    Feb 22, 2008 | Full Review…

    David Gritten

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • At times there is something weirdly comforting about the film's no-frills, fundamentalist zeal.

    Feb 22, 2008 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Xan Brooks

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • Stallone may believe that he can turn back the clock to the golden era of his career, but I'm not convinced that this kind of brutal, bellicose naivety sits so well with audiences any more.

    Feb 22, 2008 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…

    Wendy Ide

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • Less a war movie than a turkey shoot in a ketchup factory.

    Feb 22, 2008 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Jamie Russell

    BBC.com
    Top Critic
  • 90 minutes of violence. No more, no less.

    Feb 22, 2008 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…

    David Jenkins

    Time Out
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Rambo (Rambo IV)

  • Sep 16, 2013
    Sylvester Stallone returns once more to the Rambo series to deliver a gritty, ultraviolent piece of garbage. This time John Rambo finds himself in Thailand transporting a group of missionaries into Burma, but when they're captured by a military warlord Rambo joins a team of mercenaries that are sent in to rescue them. It's really a pointless story that doesn't add anything to the Rambo character. Additionally, the violence is gratuitous, with nothing exciting about any of it. Rambo is the last breath of a dead franchise that's desperately trying to remain relevant.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 16, 2012
    Well to this entry credit it has the only poster where there's no explosion behind Rambo and continues the series inconsistency in the titles. This is by no means a great movie nor a worthy sequel to First Blood, but it's a slight improvement to the previous sequels. Rambo (this series needs better titles) is about John Rambo rescuing a group of Christian aid workers in war-torn Burma. The plot is pretty straight forward and finally the film length doesn't extend it limited material like the previous sequels. This action movie hands down has the most cast of unlikable heroes. I really didn't care to much for the mercenaries that helped Rambo and you know you got some bad writing when you want the good guys to die. As for Rambo, he's still in Asia for some reason and maintains his pissed off look throughout the entire movie. Now clearly Stallone plays on his characteristics which is why we get less of his dramatic acting and more off Rambo being angry all the time. To this movie credit it does give you a good reason to cheer on Rambo to kill his enemies. While I might like the violence in this movie I do think they went overboard with it. I praise it for accurately depicting the violence in Burma, but honestly there's some that won't be able to stomach people getting blown up, kids being killed, limbs flying off, and there's even an moment where a soldier burns a baby. This entry is the most violent yet and contains more gore than possibly any horror movie ever made. Stallone acting is pretty boring to watch, he barely changes his facial expression to anything other than pissed off. Though in his defense I think I be pretty pissed if people wanted me to make more Rambo sequels. The supporting cast is actually good, but there are not memorable by any means. I read somewhere that Stallone is planning one last Rambo entry set in Mexico or Vietnam and it'll most likely be called, John Rambo. Hopefully Stallone final Rambo entry, if it ever enter production, goes back to the basic when Rambo was simply a man and not a ruthless killing machine for an appropriate finish to his violent character. Rambo might not be the sequel were looking for in this series, but for it not a bad entry. While definitely not for everyone, only those fans of the Rambo series should check it out.
    Caesar M Super Reviewer
  • Mar 24, 2012
    Very much the most violent action movie of the late 2000s, enough for a good appeal to fans of the franchise as noted. However, it's too short on plot (yet on par with it's predecessors for a brief moment) and the other actors involved are generally uninteresting apart from Stallone's typical iconic role.
    Max G Super Reviewer
  • Dec 02, 2011
    Rambo is not some incredible film, but the series has always been about action and it keeps it up here. The plot is pretty pointless, but honestly I wasn't looking for some big and complex story, just fun action. The violence goes above and beyond in this film, and honestly I had a fun time. Also, the end of the film will be a treat for any longtime Rambo fans. So don't see this expecting a masterpiece, but instead a fun action film.
    Bradley W Super Reviewer

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