Rambo: First Blood

Question: I actually have two questions about this film. Firstly, does Rambo actually kill anyone in this film? Dennehy doesn't die and he didn't kill Galt so was there anyone else? And secondly when Rambo arrives at the cliff face, why didn't he simply run to his right or left? The police were only coming at him from behind (and even if one of them came from the side, Rambo could have used his skills to get past him). So why did he feel that going down the cliff was his only option?

Gavin Jackson

Chosen answer: No he doesn't kill anyone. He didn't know if he was surrounded or not and if he did encounter one from the side they might have shot him.

Grumpy Scot

Question: Behind the desk of Teasle is a distinguished service cross, a silver star and a purple heart. So he is himself a very brave fighter. Why would such a "war hero" be so mad about another war hero, a recipient of the medal of honor, delivered only by the President of the United States? Jealousy? Rage about the death of his friend?

Answer: At the start of the film when Rambo is causing all these problems, the Sheriff has no idea who John Rambo is (Vietnam War hero), so he thinks Rambo is just another America-disrespecting drifter (the American flag on Rambo's jacket). Also, Teasle is a law and order guy who does not want his town disturbed by outsiders. After the fireworks and Teasle finds out who Rambo is and also meets Colonel Troutman, Teasle's mission becomes personal: rage at the death of his best friend, humiliation in front of his deputies, the incompetence of the state National Guard to subdue Rambo, and also a generational factor: Teasle probably served in Korea or WW2, when America was top dog in the world, so he will not allow some hippie ex-soldier from a "lost" war best him.


Question: I was wondering, at the beginning when the cop is about to shave him, why does he freak out about the knife but can kill people with his own knife?


Chosen answer: Because it's a knife that someone else is holding and can use against him. It's common for people in dangerous professions to regard their weapons as tools. For example, police officers who commit suicide by handgun rarely use their service weapon, but rather a personal firearm.

Captain Defenestrator

Additionally, I believe it is made clear during that scene that Rambo had previously been tortured at some point, and one of the tools used was a knife. So the combination of being restrained and having someone approach with a knife caused him to basically have extreme PTSD and so he attempts to escape.


Question: Is it a mistake that the firearm that Rambo uses against his pursuers is different from the one that Sgt Gault uses against Rambo? He did take Sgt Gault's rifle after his fall from the helicopter.

Answer: The rifle Rambo used was a run-of-the-mill M16 rifle, not a hunting rifle.


Question: Was First Blood not approved by any law enforcement or military? I noticed many types of military uniform mistakes, the stars on the trucks upside down, the flags on the police uniforms facing backward when the blue field should be forward. Usually, if a film can not get approval, they can not correctly show military or law enforcement items.

Answer: More than likely. After all, the movie portrayed both the local law enforcement and National Guard to be either intolerant jerks or incompetent morons. Hardly something they would approve of.

Grumpy Scot

Answer: No, it's a myth that actors have to have permission to wear military or law enforcement items, and nor do they have to be displayed correctly.


Question: Everyone says Rambo only kills one person in First Blood. But I watched it a few months ago, and I'm sure I remember him blowing up some police cars in a chase. What happened there?


Chosen answer: He is never shown on camera to definitely kill more than one person (the shooter in the helicopter); the police cars flip over and crash, but the people inside are not shown to be dead, so it is possible they survived.


Chosen answer: Probably so he could torture and kill him himself.

raywest Premium member

Answer: Teasle is a "my way or the highway" type of guy, as evidenced by his actions and the people he has on his team (they are either very aggressive, or extremely passive and do whatever they are told). When Rambo escapes, he is hell bent on ensuring that justice is served (even though he fabricated the crimes basically), so much so that he gets abusive and obsessed with serving it. he knows the national guard guys are likely to shoot first and ask questions later, so he tells them that he wants him alive, so that he can ensure justice if served. He is basically akin to Batman - justice will be served at any costs, except for killing them in cold blood.


Question: What could possibly have made Teasle think that it was Rambo who killed Gault? Teasle was fully aware that Rambo was injured and unarmed and that Gault was in a helicopter trying desperately to shoot him (against orders). So how the hell did he come to that conclusion?

Gavin Jackson

Answer: In Teasle's mind, anything that happened after Rambo escaped would be his fault - he put in motion the sequence of events that lead to everything happening. Additionally, he isn't exactly in his right mind with all this.

Chosen answer: Rambo essentially admitted responsibility, when he tried to make peace with the officers as he stood near the body. As well, we can assume the chopper pilot reported the incident - while he may not have seen Rambo, rocks don't throw themselves at helicopters.


Chosen answer: A meal in the 80s would have cost 4 or 5 dollars. A bus ticket would have been around 50, or more, depending on where he was going.

Captain Defenestrator

Question: Why is Teasle so against allowing Rambo to come to town to get something to eat at the beginning? And what's with Galt being so harsh and brutal to Rambo when he's in prison, and then becoming obsessed with wanting to kill Rambo after he escapes? What is the character motivation for Galt hating Rambo so much?

Answer: Teasle considered Rambo to be a vagrant who might cause trouble and wanted him out of town. Galt is a sadistic, cruel thug with a badge who enjoys abusing others. After Rambo overpowers him and his deputies and then escapes, Galt is furious, and, probably humiliated, wants revenge.

raywest Premium member

Question: When Rambo put his hands up, why did Teasle give him orders like he was going to arrest him, only to then try to shoot him? Wouldn't it make sense to just do one or the other?


Answer: Possibly to lull him into a false sense of security and then shoot him when his guard was down.

raywest Premium member

Continuity mistake: When Rambo crashes through the road block in the army truck it's still daylight outside but when he's approaching the gas station it's nighttime. How could so much time pass when he was within minutes of town when he went through the road block?

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Trivia: In the introduction to the 1988 Hodder Headline edition of the novel First Blood, author David Morrell says that he got the name Rambo from both a variety of apple, and the writer Rimbaud: "A French author's name and the name of an apple collided, and I recognized the sound of force."

J I Cohen

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