It’s been quite a career for Sylvester Stallone, who’s appeared in almost 80 films since 1969. Many of those films have been about sports, such as the Rocky series (boxing, including Rocky through Rocky V, Rocky Balboa, Creed, and Creed 2), Grudge Match (also boxing), Driven (CART auto racing), Escape To Victory (WWII prisoners playing soccer), and Over the Top (arm wrestling). Even more of them have been action movies, from the Rambo series (five movies) through the The Expendables series (four movies) through Cliffhanger, Demolition Man, Cobra and more.
But one thing Stallone hasn’t done a lot of is out-and-out superhero movies. He did play the title character in 1995’s Judge Dredd, but that’s more general comics than superhero. And that’s a description that also extends to his roles as Stakar Ogord in Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 and King Shark in The Suicide Squad : the first of those is certainly a superhero movie, but Stallone isn’t playing a hero, and the second has him voicing a criminal-turned-reluctant-at-best-hero. So it’s interesting to see an upcoming movie (Samaritan, which premieres globally on Prime Video on Aug. 26), that has him in a superhero role, even if his character initially has some reluctance to accept that. Here’s a new trailer for that film, which sees 13-year-old boy Sam Cleary (Javon “Wanna” Walton, seen at top in a still with Stallone) realize his neighbor “Mr. Smith” (Stallone) is actually super-powered vigilante Samaritan, who was reported dead after a fire 25 years ago:
There’s certainly some potential there. And it’s definitely notable to see Stallone taking on a role like this. Yes, Samaritan seems a little more down-to-earth than some of the more crazily-powered heroes found in the farther corners of the Marvel or DC universes. But there are still clearly some powers here, including his ability to walk away after getting hit by a car, and this is still a little different than the everyday humans (with exceptional combat training and arsenals, to be sure, but still) we’ve more usually seen Stallone play. It will be interesting to see how this one is received.
Samaritan, written by Bragi F. Schut and directed by Julius Avery, premieres on Prime Video on Aug. 26.
[YouTube; photo supplied by MGM]