Rocky (1976)

Rocky (1976)

Director: John G Avildsen
Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young

A no-name boxer gets a shot at the big time when the heavyweight champion selects him as the challenger in a Bicentennial match.

I remember one time trying to kick off a Rocky marathon, but I just couldn't get into it. Some time and maturation must have helped, because this really is a standout film. It starts slow, yes, and if you can't get into the characters, this'll be a chore. The trio of Rocky, Adrian and Paulie are all really awkward and it can be uncomfortable to watch them at times, but it all feels very real. Carl Weathers makes an excellent counterweight as the polished and confident Apollo Creed. Then there's the memorable performance by Burgess Meredith as the irascible, acerbic Mickey. It's impressive that Stallone wrote the original screenplay himself and there's a lot of himself in the character of Rocky. If you don't mind the slow buildup, you should definitely see this movie.

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