Stallone Collector’s Set (Rambo: First Blood / Cop Land / Lock Up) (Blu-ray Review)
Where to get it: Lionsgate
First Blood (1982)
Director: Ted Kotcheff
John J. Rambo is a former United States Special Forces soldier who fought in Vietnam and won the Congressional Medal of Honor, but his time in Vietnam still haunts him. As he came to Hope, Washington to visit a friend, he was guided out of town by the Sheriff William Teasel who insults Rambo, but what Teasel does not know that his insult angered Rambo to the point where Rambo became violent and was arrested, as he was at the county jail being cleaned, he escapes and goes on a rampage through the forest to try to escape from the sheriffs who want to kill him. Then, as Rambo’s commanding officer, Colonel Samuel Trautman tries to save both the Sheriff’s department and Rambo before the situation gets out of hand.
Next to the Rocky series this is the Stallone film and franchise you want to own. Here we have the film that started it all. In the original here we have more of a character story about a war vet that has been pushed too far. We have things that made us love the Rambo character but the big time action scenes and explosions we came to connect Rambo to later be here as much. Yet this may still be the best Rambo film you’ll ever find. It’s for sure the best written and plot driven.
Lock Up (1989)
Director: John Flynn
Frank Leone is nearing the end of his prison term for a relatively minor crime. Just before he is paroled, however, Warden Drumgoole takes charge. Drumgoole was assigned to a hell-hole prison after his administration was publicly humiliated by Leone, and has now arrived on the scene to ensure that Leone never sees the light of day.
Here we see Stallone playing a character that is fighting against the man! And you’ll find he is winning for the most part in this under rated Stallone film from 1989. We have all the elements in this film that made us love Stallone films. While it’s not Over the Top or Cobra, any action fan who likes a good battle in prison will enjoy it.
Cop Land (1997)
Director: James Mangold
Sometime in the 1970’s, police officers from New York wanted a safe haven to live, away from the dangers of the streets of New York, this is when they established a “Cop Land” in the small New Jersey town of Garrison. Freddy Heflin who was always admired by the New York cops wanted to become one, but because he was deaf in one ear this prevents him from achieving his goal, but has become sheriff of Garrison. Recently there have been a dark omen surrounding the NYPD, and Freddy is now investigating on this case, then Internal Affairs officer Mo Tilden is also on the case and asks Freddy for help, but Freddy could not. Now Freddy suspects that a New York cop named Ray Donlan might be one of the many cops who is corrupted by the mob and other criminals. Now, Freddy must find a cop who is nicknamed “Superboy” who can testify against Donlan and protect him, before Donlan finds Superboy and kills him.
And we have our time old tale of a crooked cop, but with an all-star lineup! This film here brings out the big guns in Harvey Keitel, Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, and of course our main man of this Blu-ray set, Sylvester Stallone. This is a very well written and well-made film with interesting if not a little typical characters. You can’t deny that it is always interesting to see Stallone mix things up well thought of actors and I do believe he holds his own well enough. And the end result is a perfectly acceptable cop movie.
What we have here is an epic set for an action movie legend. Rambo really stands out in its transfer. It is not an eye popping transfer but the detail and the blacks is there to make it look really slick and nice. A lot of it takes place at night but the 1080p is solid. As for Lock Up the fine details are a little lacking but I’m sure it’ll exceed your expectation for a film of this nature. Some stuff looks a little bleak but given the tone of the film that may be fit it best. Finally as far as Cop Land goes it looks near perfect in close-ups but does seem a little soft in other scenes. Still, you can’t deny the quality you get here and it is a must own set for any Stallone fan.