First Blood (also known as Rambo: First Blood) is a 1982 action adventure film directed by Ted Kotcheff. It was produced by Buzz Feitshans with the screenplay being written by Michael Kozoll, William Sackheim, Sylvester Stallone based on the novel First Blood by David Morrell and is the first instalment of the Rambo franchise. First Blood stars Sylvester Stallone, Richard Crenna, Brian Dennehy, Bill McKinney, Jack Starrett, Michael Talbott, Chris Mulkey, John McLiam, Alf Humphreys and David Caruso.
The storyline follows John Rambo, a much troubled and often misunderstood Vietnam war veteran. Rambo is travelling by foot to visit an old comrade, who unbeknown to him had passed away the previous year. As he continues his travels he arrives in the small town of Hope, Washington. After being intercepted by the town’s Sheriff, Will Teasle, who considers Rambo to an unwanted nuisance the trouble. Rambo must use all his combat and survival skills to escape from the abusive Hope law enforcement.
The producers had first considered Steve McQueen for the role of Rambo but rejected the idea as they considered him too old to play a Vietnam veteran from 1975. For the role of Sheriff Will Teasle, the producers had approached Gene Hackman and Robert Duvall whom both turned down the role. Lee Marvin, turned down the role of Colonel Trautman. Kirk Douglas was initially hired for the role of Trautman, but just before shooting began, he quit over a script dispute; Douglas had wanted the film to end as the book did with Rambo and Teasle fatally wounding each other and Trautman finishing Rambo with a kill shot before sitting with the dying Teasle for his final moments.
Principle photography for the film was shot in 1981 on location in British Columbia, Canada. The town scenes were shot in Hope and the nearby Othello Tunnels, called Chapman Gorge in the film, while the rest of the movie was shot in Capilano Canyon, Golden Ears Provincial Park and Pitt Lake in Pitt Meadows.
When First Blood was released it initially recieved mixed reviews from the critics, however it has since received reappraisal from critics, with many praising the roles of Sylvester Stallone, Brian Dennehy, and Richard Crenna. It’s widely recognised as an influential film in the action genre. On Rotten Tomatoes it currently holds a rating of 85% with the general consensus being, “Much darker and more sensitive than the sequels it spawned, First Blood is a thrilling survival adventure that takes full advantage of Sylvester Stallone’s acting skills.”. In his review, Roger Ebert praised the three leading actors for their performances. He went on to add that he did not like the film’s ending, but that it was “a very good movie, well-paced, and well-acted not only by Stallone … but also by Crenna and Brian Dennehy.” He said, “although almost all of First Blood is implausible, because it’s Stallone on the screen, we’ll buy it.” Overall he awarded First Blood three out of four stars.
Commercially, First Blood was hugely successful. Produced with an estimated production budget of $14 million, First Blood topped the US box office for three week and took $6,642,005 in opening weekend box office reciepts. It went on to take $47 million at the US box office making it the highest grossing film in the autumn of 1982 and the 13th highest-grossing film of the year. It went on to gross $125,212,904 in worldwide box office reciepts, was the first major blockbuster Hollywood film to be released in China (it was released in 1985) where it sold 76 million tickets, the highest for a foreign Hollywood film up until 2018.
First Blood’s success spawned a franchise, consisting of three sequels (all which were co-written by and starred Sylvester Stallone), an animated series, comic books, and numberous novels. A fifth film, tentatively titled Rambo: Last Stand, was cancelled in January 2016 when Sylvester Stallone stated that he was retiring the character. The film was finally announced in May 2018 and was released in the USA on September 20th 2019.
Year of Film
Sylvester Stallone, Richard Crenna, Brian Dennehy, Bill McKinney, Jack Starrett, Michael Talbott, Chris Mulkey, John McLiam, Alf Humphreys, David Caruso
Origin of Film
Genre(s) of Film
Action | Adventure | Drama
Budget: $14,000,000 (Estimated)
Opening Weekend: $6,642,005 (USA) (24 October 1982)
Gross: $125,212,904 (Worldwide)
Type of Poster
Style of Poster
Origin of Poster
Year of Poster
40″ x 30″
Single Sided or Double Sided
NSS # / Printer Markings
Printed in England by Lonsdale & Bartholomew Ltd Nottingham
This time he’s fighting for his life.
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