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Music Conducted By
Jerry Goldsmith

Orchestrations By
Arthur Morton
Nancy Beach

Recorded By
Bruce Botnick

Performed By
The Hungarian State Opera

Album Produced By
Jerry Goldsmith

Intrada INT 7150 (re-mastered)

Previous Release(s)
MAF 7094 (re-mastered)

Intrada RVF-6006D
Scotti Bros LP/CD (Songs And Score)

Year Of CD/Film Release

Running Time

Normal Release

Reviewed By
Peter Price

Cues & Timings

01. Carolco Logo (0:19)
02. Preparations (6:24)
03. The Money (0:51)
04. Another Time (3:56)
05. I’m Used To It (0:59)
06. Peshawar (1:11)
07. Afghanistan (2:37)
08. Questions (3:37)
09. Then I’ll Die (3:34)
10. The Game (2:25)
11. Flaming Village (4:07)
12. The Aftermath (2:42)
13. Night Entry (3:59)
14. Under And Over (2:55)
15. Night Fight (6:51)
16. First Aid (2:45)
17. The Long Climb (2:58)
18. Going Down (1:04)
19. Running Wild (0:30)
20. Find Cover (0:51)
21. The Cave (3:32)
22. The Boot (1:54)
23. You Did It, John (1:07)
24. Final Battle (6:13)
25. I’ll Stay (9:01)

Soundtrack Ratings







Rambo III


If Jerry Goldsmith crafted his music to match the quality of the films he scores, his oeuvre would contain few masterpieces. But his position as one of the great film music composers arises from the fact that so many of his scores stand apart from their films and surpass them.

In the case of Goldsmith's score, the composer could have taken the easy road and simply re-used ideas from the first two movies, but like the Final Conflict of the Omen trilogy, Rambo III inspired Goldsmith to write a complex and innovative score, utilising both traditional orchestral forces juxtaposed with Asian instruments and electronics to pepper his music with a connection to the hostile, but beautiful landscapes (Peshawar, Afghanistan and Under and Over).

The meditational tranquillity of Rambo's new life is introduced in the opening cue (Another Time), with the First Blood theme reprised on trumpet, but this time with strings replacing the original guitar arpeggios. Goldsmith develops his melody into something hauntingly beautiful, surrounding it with sweet strings to extract every drop of pathos for the Rambo character. Later Goldsmith extends the theme to capture the futility of war with both Questions and the mournful Aftermath, surpassing even First Blood's It's A Long Road theme for sheer emotional impact.

Preparations builds layer upon layer of instruments: strings, synthesisers, abstract stabs of flute, ethnic and militaristic percussion in one of Goldsmith's most complex cues. This 'building' carries through the entire score at every level. Starting gently and melodically, it subtly increases in tension, and becomes action music proper only in the second half of the score.

Fans of Goldsmith's action music will not be disappointed as Rambo wages another one man war erupting during a series of thunderous cues (Night Fight, Flaming Village, Final Battle, The Game) with virtuosi playing from brass, percussion and winds. The score closes with the superb, but unused end title music; I'll Stay as Goldsmith bids a fond farewell to Rambo and his theme.

The original soundtrack was released on the Scotti Brothers label with a mix of songs and a very short portion of the score (27mins). Add to that the Hungarian orchestra was no match for the National Philharmonic and consequently a number of major cues were never used, instead being replaced by music from Rambo II, though poorly edited into the picture. At the time Goldsmith fans were enraged and so was Doug Fake, who five years later issued this complete score CD allowing fans to finally evaluate and enjoy Goldsmith's mammoth work. But that wasn't the end of the story and in 2004 Intrada released another version with a superior re-mastered sound and new artwork. Finally in 2018 a newly re-mastered version using the first generation masters was released. At one point this was to have included a slightly different version of Another Time and the album edit of Preparations but this would have meant a 2 CD set and there was nothing else to pad out the 2nd disc.

Rambo III may seldom be mentioned in the company of Goldsmith's more recognised classics such as Islands in the Stream or The Wind and the Lion, et al, but Rambo III is a masterpiece of the genre and an epic work nonetheless.