Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Rambo Four, The Secret Script

It’s been a few years since Sylvester Stallone had a hit movie.  His last appearance was in Spy Kids 3 in 2003.  His last decent movie was the generally unseen Cop Land in 1997.     His last  Rambo movie was in 1988.  In case you don’t remember, Rambo 3 has Vietnam Vet, post-traumatic stress survivor, John Rambo finding a new place to be a human killing machine by fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan.  Rambo is drawn there because his best friend and former commander, Richard Crenna, has been captured by the Soviets.  Rambo allies with the Mujahideen and rescues Crenna/Trautman, shoots down a helicopter, and helps his new allies learn to wage guerilla war with a super power.  In 1988, Americans loved this movie and whole theaters actually cheered as these pious Moslems were inspired by Rocky Balboa to show the Soviets what it meant to face the Eye of the Tigris.  

Fifteen years later, many of the kids who went to see Rambo are now in Iraq shooting at his good pals, the Mujahideen.  Well it may not be that many since Rambo 3 only grossed 55 million.  Apparently, there is a Rambo 4 in the works, with a plot involving White Supremacists kidnapping Rambo’s daughter, Natalee Holloway.  There was talk a few years ago about a Rambo 4 with John Rambo joining forces with Jackie Chan to take on the terrorists behind 9/11 that even has status as an urban legend.Here you thought Hollywood was anti-American.  Of course, that posed a minor continuity problem with Rambo 3, but that’s never stopped action movie makers before.  It could be worse, they could make Rambo governor of California, but I imagine no one in Hollywood would greenlight that absurd of a plot.  

Possibly because I was the only person working for the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy (VRWC) who wasn’t involved in putting Sam Alito through the Red Screen for his confirmation hearings and perhaps because of my time working on George Lucas’s least known movie, Fast Times at Ewok High, it fell to me to redo the script for Rambo 4.  

Scene 1:  John Rambo is at home having a beer with Clint Eastwood.  

JR:  Yo, Clint.  Dirty Harry can’t make no boxing movie.  

CE:  I’ve already signed Hillary Swank to do the lead.

JR:  No Way.  Did you see what that chick did to the Karate Kid franchise?

CE:  Look, if you’re going to keep making movies, you’ve got to grow.  (Clint points to Oscars in his bookshelf)  My characters get in touch with their feminine side.  

JR:  Okay, okay, so letting me beat up Tommy Morrison wasn’t such a good idea and maybe I shouldn’t have cast my own son.   Clint, why don’t you have the chick fight Rocky in the sequel?  We could work together.  

CE:  Seriously, critics really dig my kinder gentler older Dirty Harry characters.  You ought to try it. It’s better than turning up on some reality tv show about boxers.

JR:  Mmmm…Well I was being serious.  I got an Oscar too.  

CE:  But you also wrote and directed Oscar.  

JR:  Hey, I thought it was pretty witty.  (Clint does his stare)….  Okay, how about this, Rocky becomes a serious artist instead of a boxer and calls himself Rocky Bilbao. (Clint’s stare changes to his squint)

CE:  I’m outta here.  (he walks out)

Scene 2: (weeks later)
(JR flips on the television and sees the World Trade Center coming down)

JR:  Oh my god.  That’s horrible, that’s shameful.  What a tragedy. (buries face in hands, pauses, then brightens)  What an idea for a sequel!

(Osama Bin Laden’s face appears on the screen)

JR:  Holy Paladin!  I know that dude.  (brief flashback to Rambo 3 where JR is showing Osama how to aim a rocket launcher at a Soviet tank along with another Moslem freedom fighter).  Hold on here.  He’s my friend. Why would my friend do this to the financial and political centers of the country that helped him in his struggle against the godless soviets? (JR reaches for his cellphone, a Razor phone is shown in a product placement)

Scene 3 (two weeks later)
Operator:  (Lily Tomlin)This is the CIA how may I connect your call?

JR:  I got to speak to Colonel Trautman.

Operator:  I’m sorry we have a Valerie Plame who works here, but she’s not really covert.  In fact she drives into headquarters every day so she’s obviously not on an overseas assignment.  Would you like to talk with Ms. Plame.  Everyone knows she works here.

JR:  No, I just want to speak with my best friend in the world Colonel Trautman. They’ve got the wrong man in this 9/11 thing.  Osama Bin Laden was my friend and co-star. I’ve been trying to reach him for 3 weeks now.

Operator:  I’m sorry sir.  We have all these untranslated cables about him.  We even have an August 6, 2001 presidential daily briefing that’s technically classified about the Al Qaeda Network.

JR:  Lady, they’re going to kill my friend.  He couldn’t have done this.

(the screen cuts to covert operatives who are listening to the conversation)

CO:  Wow, it’s a good thing we didn’t have to go to the FISA court for a warrant to do this!  We would never have been able to get a hold of General Trautman for Rambo.
(a young woman is seen running off to make the call in a mumbled conversation that ends in “Stat”)
Scene 4
minutes later
GT:  This is Trautman. John, I’m sitting here with the National Security Council.  They hired me to replace Richard Clarke, who quit so he could write a tell all book and because W wouldn’t promote him.

JR:  Osama didn’t do it.  You know I wouldn’t lie to you.

GT:  How do you know this John?

JR:  He’s my friend.  We killed Russians together in Afghanistan.

GT:  John, that was another administration.  No one cares that we armed the Mujahideen and made the Taliban the Taliban.

JR:  He’s like the Moslem Rambo.  We even stole a Mig Fighter together then crashed it into a Soviet ammo dump…(pauses) After we bailed out of course.
(there is the sound of much discussion)

W:  See, I told you guys Osama’s not the one we want.

DR:  It must have been Saddam then.  

Chorus of voice:  Damn right, Saddam is our real enemy.

GT:  John, thanks for setting America right yet again.

JR:  Well the first movie helped America understand the pain of being a neglected Vietnam vet and the horrors of PTSD.  The second Rambo movie was about all those missing POWs still in Vietnam that John Kerry betrayed.  The third movie was about Osama being a good guy. Youse welcome though.

DR:  Okay, time to divert all the money and intelligence assets to Iraq.

CR:  What is this Al Qaeda anyway? I like this better, Rambo fought the Soviets.  I know a lot about the Soviet Union.

Scene 5
(a few months later, JR is at home again watching the rescue of Jessica Lynch)
JR:  That’s pretty cool.  I’ve got to use some tracer bullets in my next sequel.  Boy, those Iraqis didn’t put up much of a fight though.  (there’s a knock at the door, JR opens it to find Angelina Jolie)
JR:  Wow, you’re much hotter than Francis Ford Coppola’s sister.

AJ: (in thick Middle Eastern Accent)  John.

JR:  (motions her in)  Hey, I know you.  (cuts back to Rambo 3, Osama+another Taliban fighter are blowing up a tank)

AJ:  (puts on head dress from her time as freedom fighter)  Maybe this will help.  (cuts to continuation of tank scene.  JR has turned his attention to downing a squadron of giant black helicopters, but you see Taliban fighter take off her head dress and shake out her dark luxuriant tresses)  

JR:  Youse a girl, and I thought girls couldn’t fight.

AJ:  Boys Don’t Cry either.

JR:   Geez, I knew youse wax pretty...What are you doing here in New Jersey?

AJ:  I’ve come to warn you about Osama.

JR:  You mean he didn’t do 9/11.

AJ:  Well, duh, of course, he did 9/11. We’re supposed to be chasing him not Saddam.

JR:  But he’s my friend.  That’s not how action movies work.

AJ:  He’s mean and abusive to women.  After you left, he enforced Sharia.  They wouldn’t let me wear revealing clothes in public.

JR:  Now, that’s definitely a crime. (looks knowingly at camera as it pans up AJ’s cleavage).

AJ:  He tried to legalize abortion.  Now I have to adopt children from all over the world.

JR: That murderer.  We have to stop him.

AJ:  Wait, I just told you he killed three thousand people in 9/11 but you still said he was your friend.  Now I tell you that he’s pro-abortion and you want to kill him?

(cut to Covert Operator with General Trautman in room, they are listening in without a warrant ready to save John Rambo)

JR:  This country’s been ignoring this modern holocaust for far too long.  Where is Osama?

AJ: I don’t know, you’ll have to spend fifteen minutes of screen time in a montage where you try to track him while risking your life.  Maybe you can pick up a partner like Jackie Chan.

JR:  I have a better idea.  A Rambo buddy movie with a female partner from likeTomb Raider.  You can do the physical stunts and I can be sensitive but morally steadying influence.  (they shake hands) Now, I have a legitimate reason to turn on my former partner and blow him away along with all his Al Qaeda henchmen.

Scene 6
Seventy five minutes of action sequences ensue.  AJ kills several hundred people while JR consoles her in her grief for having to kill so many of her former comrades in arms. There is little to no dialogue except for one key scene where Osama is shown meeting with Saddam (played by Harry Belafonte or someone who looks like him) to discuss the way they had actually planned 9/11 together.  

JR:  Wow, General Trautman, you got this video of Saddam and Osama together through  unwarranted cell phone surveillance.  

GT:  Yes, believe it or not, the key link was a librarian in New Jersey.  One of her patrons had checked out a copy of the Q’aran and the anarchists handbook in the same month.

JR:  Thanks to the Patriot Act.

GT:  And a Supreme Court that understands the rule of law, the real meaning of the Bill of Rights, and judicial restraint.

JR:  If the president wasn’t protecting us in a time of war, who would?

GT:  Can you imagine, not letting him operate with all the necessary tools.  

Scene 7
(AJ has Osama in a cave on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.  She is holding a gun at him, but is uncertain whether or not she should kill him)

AJ:  Where did Saddam hide those weapons of mass destruction?

OSB:  Saddam, I don’t know any Saddam.

AJ:  We have the videotape.

OBL:  The WMD are equally divided between Howard Dean’s basement and Cindy Sheehan’s garage.

AJ:  Anywhere else?

OBL:  Oh yeah, Jennifer Anniston has some of them too.  

AJ:  That witch.  I have an Oscar.  She doesn’t.  I have Brad. She doesn’t.  Now American knows why.

JR:  AJ don’t do it.

AJ:  What do you mean don’t do it?

JR:  We have to put him on trial first.

AJ:  Trial, he doesn’t deserve a trial?

OBL: I don’t need no stinking decadent western trial. I only answer to Allah

JR:  We’re defending freedom, remember. (patriotic music plays in background, picture of ruins of WTC appears)

AJ:  Oh yeah, I forgot.

JR:  Don’t worry, we don’t have to charge him yet and until we try him it’s okay for us to torture him all we want.  You know that black outfit from Mr. And Mrs. Smith?

OSB:  Please, kill me now.  I have no reason to go on.  Let me die a dignified death.  John, remember that helicopter outside Kabul?  For old times sake? We were freedom fighters together.

JR: Freedom fighters don't shake hands with Saddam. I'm only considering this because all action heroes are really pro-life.

AJ:  John?

JR:  Put the gun down AJ.

(she puts the gun down, screen goes black, next shot is of OBL, hogtied, dressed in a miniskirt and full makeup, while JR plays barefoot hopscotch over an open copy of the Koran)

AJ:  J, I’m sure glad you had that secret handbook from Abu Ghraib, that was misused by a few bad apples.  This will be very effective in getting key information even if it looks like a harmless prank.

JR:  We did it for freedom AJ.  Sometimes you have to kill thousands of innocent people in the name of freedom and also ignore the unnecessary parts of the constitution.

AJ:  JR, you’re a great American.  We all look up to you and thank you for the gift of democracy. You know, this makes me want to convert.

Credits come on. Blooper reel is interspersed of JR trying to say “War Powers Act” and “Right to Privacy”
At end of credits there’s a pullaway shot to the covert operators watching the video of the capture of Osama.  One of them watching another screen yells,”Damn, I knew it.  That Arab terrorist said “Happy Holidays”.  I bet he’s an illegal immigrant too.”
Screen Title in white runs underneath.
“Coming in fall 2008, Rambo 5 Rambo saves Christmas from Illegal Immigrants protected by a partisan special prosecutor.”

No chicken hawks were killed or harmed in any way in the making of this movie.  

see also the Da Vinci Clone



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