Rambo Last Blood
Rambo: Last Blood is a 2019 American action film directed by Adrian Grunberg. The screenplay, co-written by Matthew Cirulnick and Sylvester Stallone (from a story by Dan Gordon and Stallone), is based on the character John Rambo created by author David Morrell for his novel First Blood. The story follows the titular Vietnam War veteran (reprised by Stallone) as he travels to Mexico to save his adopted daughter, who has been kidnapped by a Mexican cartel and forced into prostitution. A sequel to Rambo (2008), it is the fifth installment in the Rambo franchise and co-stars Paz Vega, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Adriana Barraza, Yvette Monreal, Genie Kim, Joaquín Cosío, and Oscar Jaenada.
Plans for a fifth film were announced on and off again since 2008, with different iterations developed and cancelled. The film was finally announced in May 2018, with Grunberg attached to direct. Principal photography began in October 2018 in Bulgaria and Spain and ended in December 2018, with additional photography in May 2019. Brian Tyler returned to score the film.
Rambo: Last Blood was theatrically released in the United States on September 20, 2019, to negative reviews, with criticisms aimed at the script, graphic violence, and what critics perceived as racist and xenophobic attitudes toward Mexico.
Eleven years after the events in Burma, Vietnam War veteran John Rambo lives in Bowie, Arizona at his deceased father’s horse ranch, which he manages with his old friend, Maria Beltran, and her granddaughter, Gabriela. Gabriela tells Rambo that a friend of hers, Gizelle, has found Gabriela’s biological father, Miguel, in Mexico. Both Rambo and Maria tell her not to go to Mexico, but Gabriela secretly drives there to ask why Miguel abandoned she and her mother years ago. Gizelle leads Gabriela to Miguel’s apartment, where he coldly tells her that he never really cared for Gabriela or her mother.
Gizelle takes a heartbroken Gabriela to a nearby club, where Gabriela is drugged and kidnapped by the enforcers of a Mexican cartel. Meanwhile, Maria informs Rambo of Gabriela’s disappearance in Mexico. Rambo rushes to Mexico and interrogates both Miguel and Gizelle about Gabriela’s whereabouts. Gizelle reluctantly leads Rambo to the club where Gabriela was last seen and confronts El Flaco, the man who last spoke with Gabriela. A mysterious woman, Carmen Delgado, tails Rambo as El Flaco leads him to Gabriela’s location. Rambo is immediately confronted, beaten and marked by the cartel, led by the brothers Hugo and Victor Martinez. They take his driver’s license with the location of Rambo’s ranch and a photo of Gabriela, whom Victor recognizes. The cartel vow to mistreat Gabriela further due to Rambo’s actions.
Carmen takes Rambo back to her home where she cares for him until he fully recovers after four days. While Rambo is cared for by Carmen, Gabriela is stripped and consistently dosed with heroin and sold to be raped repeatedly. Carmen says she is an independent journalist who has been investigating the Martinez brothers, who kidnapped and murdered her sister. Rambo later raids one of the brothels, killing several men until he finds a drugged Gabriela. While driving back home in his pickup, Rambo thanks Gabriela for giving him hope for ten years but she dies from the forced overdose. An enraged Rambo sends Maria away and rigs the ranch with traps for a confrontation, and later returns to Mexico to ask Carmen’s help in finding Victor. Carmen initially refuses and tells Rambo that it will solve nothing, but is convinced after he appeals to her grief and frustration.
Rambo raids Victor’s home, killing several guards and decapitating Victor. In retaliation, Hugo leads a group of hitmen to Rambo’s ranch, where each falls victim to the rigged traps. Saving Hugo for the last, Rambo mutilates him and rips his heart out, killing him instantly. In the aftermath, a weakened Rambo sits on the porch of his father’s house, vowing to continue fighting and keep the memories of his loved ones alive. During the credits, flashbacks to scenes from the first four movies in the franchise are shown, with Rambo finally saddling up his horse and riding off into the sunset.