Top 100 Movies of All Time Rocky

Top 100 Movies of All Time Rocky
Reader Rating1 Votes

Top 100 Movies of All Time Rocky. And I gotta say, I am not looking forward to this watch – AT ALL. Why am I walking through the Hollywood Reporters top 100 movie list of all time? The point was to grow THiNC. up a bit and look at movies beyond the stand mindjob movie fare. Or, to learn that we aren’t missing much at all… one or the other. But ultimately, I thought it might be worth the effort to try and learn something. A lot of times we get caught in the trap of our preferences. And forcing ourselves to move beyond our standard fare might just teach us something.

But this week? Is Rocky. And I am a HUGE outspoken voice against the standard sports movie trope… and that trope was invented by the mac daddy of them all – Rocky. Not familiar with the standard of a Hollywood sports movie? Down on their luck lumberjack is about to have his house foreclosed on – but he signs up for the lumber-jacking Olympics! He’ll get his gold medal and will be able to hawk it for the bank fees on his house. But during his first exhibition match to get into the Olympics he loses so badly that no one thinks he’ll be able to ever come back from the setback. Then the editor inserts a training montage. He chases a chicken with his chainsaw, but can’t catch it. BUT EVENTUALLY HE cuts that chicken in two! He is ready! And sure enough, he cuts, slices, and dices that lumber all the way to his final match. Where he finds his last lumberjack boss, the one that refused him that pay increase, and stole his girl? That guy… is waiting for him. But in a lumberjack-off to end all lumber-jack offs… he beats his old boss, wins the gold, pays off his mortgage debt, and gets his girl back.

Yeah, not a fan. You know the movie even before it starts. And even if the story is based on fact, they force the story to fit the formula. So, now that I have to re-watch the film, and revisit the granddaddy of them all? I’m really not looking forward to it. So let’s do it shall we?

Top 100 Movies of All Time Rocky

Woah. First thought, is there a remastered version out there? I can literally see scratches and hair in this print I am watching!? Alright, we’ll let that go for now. I’m sure there is probably a better print out there, but I won’t judge it too harshly for the print quality, I promise.

1975. The greatest fighter, Apollo Creed, lets the world know that he is going to have a title fight in Philadelphia during the bicentennial of the United States of America! (Totally forgot this part!) But, terribly, Mac Lee Green, his scheduled opponent, can’t fight because of an injury. So, instead, he gives an opportunity to a local fighter. And out of the blue, Apollo selects Rocky Balboa – loan shark collector, who only fights in local gyms doing small time stuff. Apollo’s promoter talks him into it, but he only does it mainly because of the $150,000 it will pay him.

Insert unorthodox training montage. Rocky uses sides of beef as punching bags. He chases chickens. He runs through the city streets. Later, Mickey Goldmill, a previous fighter, turned trainer, that wants to train Rocky. Rocky doesn’t want anything to do with Mickey at first, but eventually Rocky lets him get involved.

Along the way, Rocky starts dating Adrian, who is working at a local fish store. And Paulie, Adrian’s brother, begins working with Rocky as his corner man. And there is a side story about Paulie’s jealousy of Rocky’s success, but Rocky begins advertising Paulie’s meat packing business. (??) Worse, the night before the fight, Rocky gets overwhelmed by the enormity of it all, and totally loses confidence. He even tells Adrian he doesn’t think he can win. But maybe, if he can just go the distance with Apollo, not get humiliated, it would be okay. Especially seeing as though no one has ever done that before.

Enter the fight… which we have trajectored towards since the very first moments of the movie. Apollo treats the fight like a big show, and enters the arena dressed like Uncle Sam. And in the first round, Rocky knocks Apollo down, the first time that has ever happened, which forces Apollo to take his fight with this upstart nobody more seriously. The fight goes for a full fifteen rounds, with Apollo and Rocky pummeling each other into hamburger. It’s so bad that Rocky has to have his swollen eye cut open in order to see again. (Can I just say that I cannot stand boxing? It is literally the lowest form of sport. Well, check that, maybe WWE is even lower. I mean, we are giving FOOTBALL crap about concussions? Hahahah. Sorry. Whatever.) As the fight wraps up, Apollo has shown he is the much better and skillful fighter. But Rocky has shown an ability to take all the pain that Apollo can send him. Everyone hails the fight as the single greatest exhibition match of all time.

But who won? Well, Rocky won… by virtue of his proving himself to the world. But the judges declared Apollo the winner in a split decision. ADRIIIIIAAAAAAAN!!!! ADRIAAAAAAANNNN?!? (Probably the only part of the movie I remembered perfectly. The two embrace and the crowd continues going nuts over these two guys and their ability to decimate each other physically. The end.

Thoughts on the Movie Rocky

The formula works. I don’t care if it’s a movie about ice skaters (The Cutting Edge), dancers (Flashdance), fighter pilots (Top Gun), karate students (Karate Kid), College Football players (Rudy), dancers at a summer camp (Dirty Dancing), Math Geniuses (Goodwill Hunting), Music Teachers (School of Rock), and flipping rappers for heaven’s sake (8 Mile), the formula can be repackaged into anything and everything. Even for lumberjacks. (I would be shocked if my lumberjack joke hasn’t actually been done.) Everyone loves a winner who overcomes adversity. And when you take an impossible situation, and you watch as someone is able to change themselves from the inside out, we exult in adulation seeing it happen.


I’m sorry, but if that isn’t obvious to you – you really need to head to a quiet place, and stop and think about your own life a little bit. Why? Because we all feel trapped, and locked into the lives that we are tied down by. Maybe it’s your parents, your job, maybe it’s your lack of money, or maybe your marriage(s). We are all trapped by our situations and lives. So we love to see someone that escapes, turns their lives around, and makes all their dreams come true. It’s a fairly insidious fairy tale. I’d be interested in the movie about Rocky right after he becomes a success. Not Rocky 2. The movie talking about his life after he “succeeds.” Will the photo of him on the wall after his fight with Apollo ultimately make him happy? Now that is a story that I would find interesting. You know?

And yet, I have to admit, there are so many great movies based on this formula, Sylvester Stallone should be heralded as the Hollywood innovator that he really is. He has succeeded in defining an entire genre of film almost single-handedly. Heck! The Three Amigos is based on this formula. And you will literally never hear me dissing the Three Amigos… ever. It’s not going to happen. “Would you say you have a plethora of piñatas?” So much goodness there.

So I would say, that my re-watching of Rocky did a couple things for me. It really gave me a very real appreciation for the film and the cottage industry it created. I hate boxing. I hate sports movies. But I have to admit that the formula works, and even I could feel myself rooting for Rocky as he came down the homestretch. He was so humble, he just didn’t want to be embarrassed, and Apollo was a pompous prick. Archetypes – they always work! But to watch it over again really gave me an appreciation for just how well this movie is done. Apollo, the world’s greatest fighter comes from the land of caviar and champagne. Rocky comes from the streets and poverty. $150,000 is something like $700,000 in today’s dollars. It will change his life forever. And it will change the world of cinema forever too. Kudos to you Sylvester Stallone. Well done.

Want to see the other movies I’ve already covered in the top 100 list… check them out right here.

Edited by: CY