Spotlight – Sly Stallone

Here is a selection of 5 stand out Sylvester Stallone movies, I’ve still not really worked out what these 5 Selected lists are all about, sometimes the top 5 best movies from an actor/director sometimes their worst, or just a select sample of their acting abilities if they have any, for this I’ve chosen my favourite Stallone movies and this time they are in order..

05. Death Race 2000 (1975)

This American Sci Fi sports movie produced by Roger Corman was a cracker in its day, something so influential that it sparked a range of remakes and copy cats over the years. Sylvester Stallone plays Joe Machine Gun Viterbi, who takes part in the Transcontinental Road Race which is televised as a form of morbid entertainment in a dystopian future. It’s not his crowning glory but definitely a role I always remember him, in a bizarre live action wacky race.

04.Ocsar (1991)

I had to add this slapstick crime comedy movie directed by John Landis and based on the Claude Mangier stage play. It’s a slightly slapstick comedy set in the home of Angelo ‘Snaps’ Provolone, a criminal who’s trying to keep a respectable face in a prestigious neighbourhood but surrounding him but being surrounded by buffoon mobsters who are also only pretending to be respectable, or what they expect respectable is, only adds to the confusion and comedy.

03. Judge Dread (1995)

Before everyone went ape shit on creating features from Marvel and DC Comics the more original stories from other independent comics were already on the shelves of your local video shop, Tank Girl, Hardware, The Crow and by Jove this dodgy reproduction from 2000AD was conceived and slathered on the public. Luckily it was all corrected by Dredd 3D but Stallone has his part etched out for him as Joe Dredd simply because he had the guns and chin for the role. While Stallone put all of his effort into being the ultimate law man I don’t think he realised that Dredd is so different from typical Hollywood/Comic style heroes. It was all we had back in the 90’s and it was a bold effort but just all the energy was focused in the wrong direction but Sly tried so very hard to make it all work.

02.Rocky (1976)

The best Stallone effort ever? Well I think so, I’m such a sucker for the Rocky saga, it really is something marvelous, In another post I will rate all the movies in some order I promise but as Stallone is so productive in his old age I do wonder if he will ever slow down? Rocky tells the illustrious story of one man who, against all odds makes it to the top in his chosen profession when most men would have been retiring he was still swinging for his life in the ring against world class champions and not for the money, for himself and the hearts of the people who believe in him. there’s so much American Dream in this film it glitters. There’s everything in this modern odyssey, love, hate, failure, success, friendship, betrayal and all with this a unique feel that it comes from the heart, and I believe it really does. Stallone is one who often deals with his life through movies on the screen.

01.First Blood (1982)

A wonderful novella written by David Morrell, which follows a man tortured by the memories of war trying to find normality back in a place he used to call home. John Rambo is meticulous re created by Stallone, in the height of his career and fitness. John is roughed up by a small section of arrogant cops in a backwater town, while trying to connect with a friend after the Vietnam war, after a harrowing experience in the police station John cracks as the current persecution beings to ignite memories of being a POW and he escapes with a handful of dedicated cops on his tail but they really don’t realise how out of the game they already are.

For me First Blood is a brilliant action movie, that speaks volumes for the nameless men who returned from a war that no one wanted to fight, only to go through hell and come back to a country that rejects them. Johns resilience and ability to fight back is outstanding, but while he just wants to be free and get on with life there’s this constantly unnecessary push from an authoritative figure, one that bends itself out of shape until neither know why they are fighting anymore. Rambo’s original adventure is a great action-thriller and character study.

I often wondered, if we didn’t believe that John Rambo was an innocent guy who was just down on his luck and being persecuted by a bunch of jerk ass cops, then you could see him as a crazy lunatic running around the forest killing innocent townsfolk..  but we know he’s got a good heart right!??

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