A non-stop thrill ride from start to finish. One of the most played scores ever in my collection.
And, a little biased. Jerry Goldsmith has replied to a letter I had sent him (thru Varese Sarabande) discussing this and several other titles he had just worked on. Received it right before the film opened.
I agree that they're great, maybe not Oscar worthy.
traditional logic says you give it to the first. First conception of themes, best somber passages, action parts are simpler but more raw and gives it an edge and better punch.
Rambo II is the most enjoyable (like 'Empire strikes back' is to 'Star Wars') Goldsmith maximized his primary theme with so many variations, tempos, and styles +introduced a couple new themes. My personal favorite.
Rambo III is the least impactful at face value. But listening to what Goldsmith wrote that wasn't used (the expanded intrada album) and a bit of education about the unique meter Goldsmith used, it is very underappreciated.
there are different times when I care to hear each one of them. they all stand up very well considering how much the Rambo series as a film trilogy is considered laughable by most filmgoers today.