John Rambo could be a great political leader -- he speaks softly and carries a big stick (or submachine gun).
Then again, the disgruntled Vietnam vet is not one for diplomacy. Or diction. Rambo's return will likely blow away this week's box-office competition, but still, check out this week's ABCNEWS.com movie guide to find out which new flicks are worth your time -- and money.
After 20 years in retirement, Sly Stallone's "Rambo" marks the return of the linguistically challenged shirtless solder who packs more heat than the Canadian Armed Forces.
Living a solitary life in Thailand as a bow-and-arrow fisherman (seriously) and venomous-snake catcher (again, not kidding), Rambo gets drawn into saving a group of aid workers held captive by the Myanmar (Burmese) army.
The disgruntled Vietnam vet must dust off the ol' hunting knife and gut the bad guys. Literally. Stallone directs this one, just as he did 2006's "Rocky Balboa." But unlike the character-driven final chapter of "Rocky" -- which was a nod to the series' Academy Award-winning roots, Rambo's fourth installment is an HGH-fueled, flame-thrower-enhanced B-film blood bath that glosses over the political underpinnings of "First Blood." This one's not "for the boys"; it's for Stallone's retirement fund.
Adding a hint of estrogen to this weekend's red meat-filled box office is "Untraceable," a serial-killer thriller starring Diane Lane as FBI cyber unit Special Agent Jennifer Marsh. Along with her partner Griffin Dowd (Colin Hanks), she hunts down a digital baddy who kidnaps people and hooks them up to Internet-linked booby traps -- the more visitors who traffic his death-porn site, the faster his victims die.
Directed by Gregory Hoblit, the man behind 2007's "Fracture," this tech-savvy flick will make you second-guess that next visit to a celebrity news blog. To quote the great Chris Crocker, "Leave Britney alone!"
On the indie-film front, comes two January films that -- gasp -- don't suck. Jack Black is care bear-lovable opposite Mos Def in Michel Gondry's playful comedy "Be Kind Rewind." After Jerry (Black) somehow magnetizes himself and accidentally erases all of the videos in his friend's store, he and his buddy Mike (Def) remake all of the classic movies. Their shoestring budget recreations are made with more heart than skill, but they become huge local hits.
The movie's downside? "Rewind" will inspire a slew of YouTube copycats. Cue the "RoboCop" remakes.
And ranking in many critics' 2007 Top 10 lists is "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days." It's a masterful, fast-paced Romanian drama about two best friends getting an illegal abortion during the final days of communist rule. It's also yet another example of Romania's quiet development into a film mecca. Look for "4 Months" at the Oscars.
Former WWE wrestling legend Dwayne "the Rock" Johnson is the lovable, charisma-charged star of "The Game Plan," a gag-filled family film that's available on DVD and Blu-Ray. Extras include 110 minutes of your child being quietly entertained. Adult entertainment not included.
"Saw IV" is director Darren Lynn Bousman's third contribution to the lucrative slasher series that's earned an estimated half-billion bucks. This one is more frenetically paced, stylish and abruptly edited than its predecessors. Special features include Darren's video diary and featurettes about the movie's props and traps. The flick is available on DVD and Blu-Ray. Spoiler alert: former Backstreet Boy Donnie Wahlberg gets tortured. Revenge is sweet.