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1976 film written by and starring Sylvester Stallone

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Hey, like maybe a classic... yuh know?

  • Jul 29, 2003
In 1976, this film was selected to receive an Academy Award for best picture. (The other nominees were All the President's Men, Bound for Glory, Network, and Taxi Driver.) Then and now, I think that at least two and perhaps three of the other nominees were more deserving. In any event, as we all know, there has since been a series of regressively ineffective sequels to the original. As we await Rocky XX, we can at least appreciate the first. Directed by John Avildsen and starring Sylvester Stallone, it adds to a rather long list of "Underdog Films," a list which now includes Seabiscuit. My rating reflects an opinion of the film as entertainment. It is important to keep in mind that 27 years have passed since its initial release. How difficult it is (at least for me) to judge it on its own terms rather than consider all of the dreadful films (including several Rocky sequels) in which Stallone has since appeared; also to contrast Rocky's non-title fight with those portrayed in Raging Bull.

After almost 30 years, I still enjoy seeing Rocky but for different reasons than I once did. One is the use of humor. The first time around, I missed so many comic moments. Another is Rocky's relationship with Mickey (Burgess Meredith). The bond they eventually forge is credible, indeed poignant. And still another is Talia Shire's performance as Adrian. Only an actress of her talent could invest that role with the texture and nuances she does. (I think her talents were essentially wasted in the three Godfather films, especially in Godfather III.) The exteriors in Philadelphia are still effective as is the build-up to the fight during which Rocky and Mickey have few resources to work with except their imagination and determination. This may not be a great film but it was certainly great fun in 1976 and it still is. Yo!

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October 28, 2010
More Rocky reviews
Quick Tip by . June 15, 2010
Rocky is an icon, hard not to like him
Quick Tip by . June 08, 2010
Although I really enjoy numbers 2 & 4 the best!
Quick Tip by . May 22, 2010
+5 just because Stallone wrote this, that is pretty baller.
About the reviewer
Robert Morris ()
Ranked #169
Professionally, I am an independent management consultant who specializes in accelerated executive development and breakthrough high-impact organizational performance. I also review mostly business books … more
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About this movie


is a 1976 American sports drama film directed by John G. Avildsen, and written by and starring Sylvester Stallone. It tells the rags to riches American Dream story of Rocky Balboa, an uneducated but kind-hearted debt collector for a loan shark in the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Rocky starts out as a club fighter who then gets a shot at the world heavyweight championship. The film also stars Talia Shire as Adrian, Burt Young as Adrian's brother Paulie, Burgess Meredith as Rocky's trainer Mickey Goldmill, and Carl Weathers as the champion, Apollo Creed.

The film, made on a budget of less than $1 million[1][2] and shot in 28 days, was a sleeper hit; it made over $225 million[3] the highest grossing film of 1976, and won three Oscars, including Best Picture. The film received many positive reviews and turned Stallone into a major star.[4] It spawned five sequels: Rocky II, III, IV, V and Rocky Balboa.

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