Benjamin Marra and I talk about Rambo: First Blood Part II.

For The House Next Door's "Summer of '85" series, Benjamin Marra (Night Business, Gangsta Rap Posse, Lil B album covers) and I discussed Rambo: First Blood Part II. Go read it!
Brandon Soderberg: Let's talk about the waterfall scene towards the end because it inspired this discussion. Basically, Benjamin was part of a panel at the Small Press Expo (SPX) called “The New Action” that was talking to “indie” creators engaged with more visceral narrative styles. At one point in the discussion, Benjamin just kinda lovingly describes the scene, late in Rambo: First Blood Part II, where Rambo fires this explosive arrow at this guy on a waterfall and there's like one killer beat between the arrow launching and the explosion and then—blam! The guy just gets decimated.

Benjamin Marra: Yeah, that whole scene really resonates with me. I really love it. The music, the way it's edited, it all just really sticks in my head. I think the scene is emblematic of the action movies around that time. Death Wish 3, Cobra, Commando, The Running Man, Invasion USA, Red Dawn, feel, through the prism of time, completely bizarre. I get the feeling they were constructed without any self-awareness. I can only speculate really that what occurred in those movies at the time they came out was totally acceptable and normal action. That's at least how I felt about them, but I was pretty young. If any of those movies were released today, they'd probably be perceived as satire.

1 comment:

Tim Hamilton said...

I feel the same way. Someone told me about this "Great" movie from the 80's called "Miracle Mile." I never saw it so I gave it a go on Netflix. It was made with what seemed like a very serious and earnest intent. But it was, as you say above, seen as parody and unbelievable to my 2010 sensibilities.