Posted on Wednesday, November 11th, 2015 by Jacob Hall
We know /Film is a movie website, but maybe you’ll forgive us for delving into the wide world of sports for a moment. After all, few moments have impacted culture worldwide like the 1985 exhibition boxing match between Rocky Balboa and Ivan Drago. This event shook the sporting world to its core and rattled the foundation of international politics – the world was never the same after Drago hit the mat and Balboa stood triumphant. It’s no accident that the Cold War finally came to an end a few years later.
Now, this astonishing match is finally getting the attention it deserves in a new episode of 30 for 30, ESPN’s acclaimed documentary series chronicling the most important figures and events in the history of sports. Whether you were alive and watching in the days of Balboa’s prime, or too young to realize just how much this event changed life on this planet, this is required viewing.
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This past week Nu Image/Millennium Films officially announced a greenlight for Rambo’s fifth mission, with Sylvester Stallone signed on to return to star and also direct. Stallone had previously hinted that the character would venture into a “slightly different genre,” leaving many fans to speculate sci-fi or a more comic bookish approach. But the plot synopsis released to the Hollywood trade papers was something else entirely… and apparently false.
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WOW. Just when you thought Slyvester Stallone couldn’t pack more action heroes in his upcoming action film The Expendables, AICN breaks the news that Arnold Schwarzenegger has joined the cast. But before you get too excited, we must warn you that it’s only a cameo. Arnold is only filming one day, and he will be playing himself – California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. So don’t expect to see Arnold getting his hands dirty. Also, Eric Roberts has apparently replaced Ben Kingsley as CIA agent Monroe.
The cast now includes Mickey Rourke, Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Randy Couture, Dolph Lundgren, Forest Whitaker, Eric Roberts and Arnold Schwarzenegger. The film tells the story about an “expendable” team, hired to do jobs that no one else can or will. The team is sent to infiltrate a South American country to overthrow the ruthless dictator and liberate the country.
The following bit of info may not fill you up, but like the last piece of octopus on a platter of boring California rolls, I can’t ignore it. I’m a glutton for cool “what if…” scenarios, especially when it comes to Rambo or Rocky, as those are all too rare. And hearing a real one come directly from Sylvester Stallone is unheard of. Stallone is answering fans’ questions over at AICN in correlation with Rambo opening the weekend after Cloverfield, and one fan inquired about Sly’s common admission that he’d like to continue the Rambo franchise beyond this new film, the fourth in the series. Here’s the answer…
I truly can’t tell you yet because I think it would be bad luck, but I think a challenge would be to take the character which has been perceived mostly in a realistic vein and add another element of the surreal that would actually take the audience into a slightly different genre. It’s not like I’m going to turn it into a full on Broadway musical starring the Muppets, but it is ambitious.
So, yeah, cross off Muppets from that list above your water bed, but what does Sly mean by this? There’s already speculation with fans that Rambo might take on Predator, an Alien, or fight a giant anaconda with a token rapper. Obviously, the action genre frequently crosses over into science fiction, or might Sly mean doing a Rambo film in the exaggerated graphic novel style of, say, Sin City or 300?
Wait, that style was already seen with Rambo‘s first poster! Imagine Rambo in a jungle drenched in shadow, wielding a massive machete as white rain falls down and the blood flows red like paint? Of course, there were also those flimsy rumors a while back that Sly might sign on to appear in the new Terminator trilogy, but that would be ridiculous, right? Robert Englund recently said that Freddy vs. Jason 2 was on ice, but a battle royale between those three would be send most dancing into the streets like Michael Jackson on fast forward. And Stallone has already declared that he’s not going after Osama, out of respect for those who really are (hopefully).
Personally, I’d be amped for a more surreal Rambo film. I’m a sucker for provocative takes on iconic characters, no matter how grounded they formerly were to reality. Sly has plenty of neat ideas these days for new flicks, and unlike Tarantino, he seems to want to get them realized ASAP. If I missed any other possible interpretations, shout below. And yes, I said “neat.”