4.8 24
Director: John G. Avildsen

Cast: John G. Avildsen, Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young


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Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone), a Philadelphia boxer, is but one step removed from total bum-hood. A once-promising pugilist, Rocky is now taking nickel-and-dime bouts and running strongarm errands for local loan sharks to survive. Even his supportive trainer, Mickey (Burgess Meredith), has givenSee more details below

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Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone), a Philadelphia boxer, is but one step removed from total bum-hood. A once-promising pugilist, Rocky is now taking nickel-and-dime bouts and running strongarm errands for local loan sharks to survive. Even his supportive trainer, Mickey (Burgess Meredith), has given up on Rocky. All this changes thanks to Muhammad Ali-like super-boxer Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers). With the Bicentennial celebration coming up, Creed must find a "Cinderella" opponent for the big July 4th bout -- some unknown whom Creed can "glorify" for a few minutes before knocking him cold. Rocky Balboa was not the only Cinderella involved here: writer/director Sylvester Stallone, himself a virtual unknown, managed to sell his Rocky script (one of 35 that he'd written over the years) on the proviso that he be given the starring role. Since the film was to be made on a shoestring and marketed on a low-level basis, the risk factor to United Artists was small. For Stallone, this was a make-or-break opportunity -- just like Rocky's million-to-one shot with Apollo Creed. Costing under a million dollars, Rocky managed to register with audiences everywhere, earning back 60 times its cost. The film won several Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
In 1976, undistinguished bit player Sylvester Stallone became an overnight sensation with the release of Rocky, a modestly produced drama that brought cheering audiences to their feet, won that year's Best Picture Oscar, and ultimately spawned four sequels. The film's surprise success vindicated both Stallone, who had written the script as a starring vehicle for himself, and little-known director John G. Avildsen, who cleverly retooled old B-movie characters and plot devices for '70s moviegoers. Stallone's protagonist, would-be prizefighter Rocky Balboa, inspired viewers with the courage and dedication he exhibited while preparing for his once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, a title fight with current champ Apollo Creed (played memorably by Carl Weathers). Veteran character actor Burgess Meredith was dazzling as Rocky's grizzled, feisty trainer, and Talia Shire contributed a sensitive performance as the challenger's shy girlfriend. Working with limited resources, Avildsen, who won the Best Director Oscar for his effort, turned in a finished product not unlike its eponymous hero: gritty and rough-edged, with plenty of heart and raw energy to spare. A quarter century later, firmly entrenched in American pop culture and undiminished by innumerable, witless parodies and cheesy knockoffs, Rocky is one ringside opus that still packs a wallop. The 25th Anniversary DVD edition sports a newly filmed, 33-minute interview with Stallone, along with an audio commentary by Avildsen, a behind-the-scenes featurette including cast and crew, a tribute to Burgess Meredith, and a potpourri of advertising and promotional material.
All Movie Guide - Richard Gilliam
Rocky is an unashamed feel-good movie. It is essentially a reworking of Paddy Chayefsky's Marty, only instead of a shy butcher in a grocery, the protagonist is a shy butcher for a local loan shark. The real-life tale is now legendary -- how the struggling young writer Sylvester Stallone was in the audience for Muhammad Ali's boxing match with (reputed) mob enforcer and all-around tough guy Chuck Wepner, only to wonder if it wouldn't make a better story if the underdog weren't beaten into a senseless pulp by the mercurial champion. Later, Stallone, still unsuccessful and very broke, would refuse an offer for his screenplay, insisting that the deal include his playing the title role. Much like the character in his screenplay, Stallone would get his unlikely chance at success and prevail in Rocky-like fashion. At the heart of the film is Rocky's reluctant romance with the similarly shy Adrian (Talia Shire). Director John G. Avildsen expertly stretched his meager budget with skillfully selected Philadelphia location shots, most notably Rocky's training montage, which ends at the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. With Network and Taxi Driver as the primary competition, the Academy opted for the upbeat Rocky, giving it three Oscars, including Best Picture.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Mgm (Video & Dvd)
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Disc 1: Rocky in a new anamorphic widescreen transfer; new audio commentary by Sylvester Stallone; new audio commentary by boxing legends Lou Duva and Bert Sugar; "Three Rounds with Legendary Trainer Lou Duva"; "Interview With a Legend: Bert Sugar"; "The Opponents" featurette.
Disc 2: "In the Ring," a three part making-of documentary; "The Steadicam Then & Now" featurette; "Make Up! The Art & Form with Michael Westmore"; "Stacatto: A Composer's Notebook with Bill Conti"; "The Ring of Truth"; deleted scenes.

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Sylvester Stallone Rocky Balboa
Talia Shire Adrian
Burt Young Paulie
Carl Weathers Apollo Creed
Burgess Meredith Mickey
Thayer David Jergens
Joe Spinell Gazzo
Jodi Letizia Marie
Bill Baldwin Fight Announcer
James Gambina Mike
Al Silvani Cut Man
Frank Stallone A Street Corner Singer
Kathleen Parker Paulie's Date
George Memmoli Ice Rink Attendant
Diana Lewis TV Commentator
George O'Hanlon TV Commentator
Larry Carroll TV Interviewer
Stan Shaw Dipper
Don Sherman Bartender
Billy Sands Club Fight Announcer
DeForest Covan Apollo's Corner
Simmy Bow Club Cornerman
Tony Burton Apollo's Trainer
Hank Rolike Apollo Cornerman
Shirley O'Hara Krims Jergens' Secretary
Lloyd Kaufman Drunk
Jane Marla Robbins Gloria, Pet Shop Owner
Jack Hollander Fats
Frankie Van Club Fight Referee
Lou Filippo Championship Fight Announcer
Joe Frazier Himself

Technical Credits
John G. Avildsen Director
Lyle J. Burbridge Sound/Sound Designer
Robert Cambell Costumes/Costume Designer
William J. Cassidy Production Designer
Robert Chartoff Producer
Carol Connors Songwriter
Scott Conrad Editor
Bill Conti Score Composer,Songwriter
James A. Crabe Cinematographer
Fred T. Gallo Asst. Director
James Gambina Consultant/advisor
Richard Halsey Editor
Joanne Hutchinson Costumes/Costume Designer
Caro Jones Casting
Gene Kirkwood Executive Producer
Wiliam L. McCaughey Sound/Sound Designer
Ray Molyneaux Set Decoration/Design
Jim Nickerson Stunts
Ayn Robbins Songwriter
James Spencer Art Director
Frank Stallone Score Composer
Sylvester Stallone Screenwriter
Frank Stollone Songwriter
Ted Adams Swanson Production Manager
Harry W. Tetrick Sound/Sound Designer
Michael Westmore Makeup
Irwin Winkler Producer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Rocky [Collector's Edition], Disc 1
1. Main Titles/Fight
2. Turtle Food
3. Break His Thumb
4. "Ain't Your Locker No More"
5. "Giving Me the Shoulder"
6. Advice
7. The Italian Stallion
8. "She's Very Excited"
9. Ice Skating
10. "I Want to Kiss You"
11. The Proposition
12. The Stuff on TV
13. "You Wanna Help Me Out?"
14. Morning Run
15. "He's Awful Pushy"
16. "Women Weaken Legs"
17. Exposure
18. Christmastime
19. In Training
20. "I Can't Beat Him"
21. The Main Event
22. Round 1
23. The Battles
24. The Final Round/End Titles

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