Sylvester Stallone went on the O'Reilly Factor on Thursday to discuss his new film The Expendables, an action film about middle-aged mercenaries written by, directed by, and starring Stallone. But the interview focuses primarily on Stallone's politics and the political message of his film, both of which have been labeled neoconservative by some critics.
The aging star of Rambo and Rocky frames his film as a vindication of such neoconservative doctrine as regime change and preemptive war. "It's pretty simple, pretty straightforward. You're bad. You've gotta go." He says of his character and the other protagonists, "these guys are patriots, and they're doing something, and they're very proud to be Americans, and they're basically taking out bad dictators, I don't know, I think it's not a bad thing."
Stallone even suggests the film is about justifying recent American invasions, presumably in Iraq and Afghanistan. "I think one of the key lines in there, the dictator at the very end, he goes, 'We will kill this American disease,' meaning the CIA people that are down there. And some people read it that I was maybe putting the focal point on American intrusion into other countries." Stallone says this antagonistic character is expressing the (typically liberal) belief that "we tend to overextend our boundaries," to which Stallone replies, "I don't believe that at all."