Quick recap: Rocky Balboa is a boxer who has essentially wasted his life fighting the wrong people. But then the champion of the boxing world, Apollo Creed, challenges him to a match for the title. So Rocky eats raw eggs, runs up stairs and punches meat to train. He also manages to fall in love with a shy pet shop employee to prove that at heart, he’s a lover not a fighter. Or something like that.
Fun (?) Fact: The poster of Rocky displayed at the boxing ring with the wrong color shorts was an actual mistake. Not having time or money to fix the mistake, Sylvester Stallone added dialogue where he points out the inaccuracy.
My thoughts: After watching this movie and trying to decide how to review it, I came to the conclusion that I’m in a sort of pop culture dilemma. Although this was my first time seeing the movie, I already knew many of the scenes and even the outcome. I basically sat through the whole thing just so I could cross it off of my list and say that I did it. That’s not to say it wasn’t an enjoyable film but it left me a bit underwhelmed overall. I almost feel a sense of guilt for not getting into the spirit of the movie and rooting for Rocky. And to top it off, in doing this project, I know that I’m going to run into more iconic movies that I mostly know the story but have never seen in their entirety.
The most fair thing I can do is try to see Rocky as a moviegoer would in 1976. It was a time before anyone really knew Stallone so his acting ability seemed impressive. And just like nowadays, people back then ate up those feel good sports stories.
Rocky’s story, if you look past the cheesiness, is endearing. Stallone lays it on a little thick as to how sweet Rocky is underneath all that violence, but the point is made nonetheless. I was most surprised by Adrian’s character because I always pictured her as some italian bombshell, not this shy girl in glasses. I really enjoyed her transformation and how loyal she stayed throughout everything. I did not, however, enjoy the billion times Rocky said, ‘Yo,Adrian!’. It felt a too heavy on the Italian stereotype. Then again, James Gandolfini just passed away and I could watch Tony Soprano for hours without getting bored or annoyed.
Final Review: 2/5. I can see why it is an iconic movie, but it’s just not for me.
Up Next: I’ll be watching a movie about a sweet transvestite from Transylvania