Kyle Hanson is a Vietnam veteran whose traumatic war-time experiences have left him unable to rejoin mainstream society. When Kyle, unkempt and in dirty fatigues, stops in a small town for some food, the local bullies can't wait for an opportunity to harass him. After Kyle uses his Special Forces training to escape the bullies, he becomes the subject of a community-wide manhunt. Only Jenny Bellows, a local girl whose husband was declared missing in action in Vietnam, is willing to give Kyle a chance.
Dirk Benedict ... Kyle Hanson
Linda Blair ... Jenny Bellows
Richard Farnsworth ... Sheriff Jethro Pough
Matt Clark ... Cecil 'Cece' Grant
Jon Van Ness ... Deputy Dave
Taylor Lacher ... Sarge
Clifford A. Pellow ... Homer
Ben Bates ... Big Ben
Jerry Gatlin ... Bubba
Bennie E. Dobbins ... Joe
Bobby Hughes ... Bobby Bellows
A.J. Blake ... Sally the Barmaid
Melanie Weeks ... Counter Girl
Patrick Connolly ... Gas Station Attendant
Bob Peeler ... Farmer at Fair
Having read "First Blood" I told everyone what a tremendous movie it would make. Imagine my surprise when I watched this movie. The hero's name was different but there was no doubt that this was the same story. Linda Blair had been added as a love interest but the battle against the small town sheriff by a disturbed Vietnam vet was definitely the story of John Rambo later made famous by Sylvester Stallone. I have spent years trying to convince others that this movie existed. It didn't help that I forgot its name. Fortunately I did remember it starred Dirk Benedict. Although not a great movie, it does satisfy the "machismo" ethos. In a way, Stallone's version was a let down. The book has a much grimmer ending than either movie. If Stallone-Rambo had suffered the fate portrayed in the book there could have been no sequels.
Dick Bendict is a loner who still has trouble getting over the horrors he faced in the Vietnam war. All he wants to do is be by himself and try to move on, but a group of hoodlums take it upon themselves to terrorize him after a beautiful widow (Linda Blair) takes an interest to him.
Well, you can give this credit as being the film that First Blood ripped off. It is entertaining and Richard Fransworth is excellent as always and Linda Blair turns in a rather appealing performance capturing the right balance between being lonely yet madly in love. This is one of her better vechiles, but other then Fransworth's and Blair's good turns there really isn't anything special or praticully distinguishable about this film.
The lead, Dirk Benedict, is really cool. There is a lot of comedy in the way he makes monkeys of all of the country rednecks that try to take him out. There is nothing he doesn't know about how to defend and take care of himself. His relationship with the young and delectable Linda Blair is tender and cute.
The country songs, especially "One Day at a Time," complement the hokey, but cool and entertaining story perfectly. The supporting actors, including Ben Johnson and Richard Farsnworth, are great. I've watched the film dozens of time, first when it came out on cable in 1982, and then after 2000, when I bought the VHS tape. You'll really enjoy this film.