Stuff in the Basement

25 Dec

It could have been God awful, but thankfully, Rocky Balboa redeems itself as a worthwhile movie and a nice send-off for the beloved character.

Basically, that’s because the movie has a lot of heart — actually, that’s all it has. And to that end, there is a lot of sad-sack Rocky bemoaning the past — both his boxing heyday and his late wife, Adrian — and there are quick shots of the people who’ve crossed his path (old opponents like Clubber Lang and Drago, old trainers, etc.) and trips to places of significance.

When the current heavyweight champ, Mason “The Line” Dixon, is told he’s got no heart, his managers seek out a boxer who has heart — Rocky, duh — and arrange an exhibition match to better Dixon’s image (though beating up on a 60-year-old Rocky wouldn’t really endear a boxer to his fans, I’d imagine).

That’s the vehicle for Stallone to make speeches about having to do what he has to do, and wanting to go out with pride and exorcise his demons (i.e.: Rocky V).

At times, the nostalgia trip and catharsis is a bit much — Rocky running up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art with a dog made me laugh — but at the end, it’s hard not to choke up after the big match.

Stallone is no great actor and some of the dialogue is clunky, but Stallone, like Rocky himself, has willed the movie together through sheer determination, and Rocky Balboa pays a fitting tribute to the character. It’s worth seeing, though I’m only going to give it a B-.

One Response to “Stuff in the Basement”


  1. It’s Not About the Money. It’s About the Game. « Martin's Musings - September 16, 2012

    […] For every Toy Story 3, for example, there’s a Rocky Balboa. […]

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