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Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956)

Passed | | Biography, Drama, Sport | 19 November 1956 (UK)
Boxer Rocky Graziano's biopic, based on his autobiography, from childhood to his World Middleweight Championship title win at age 28 in 1947.

Director:

Robert Wise

Writers:

Ernest Lehman (screenplay), Rocky Graziano (autobiography) | 1 more credit »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Paul Newman ... Rocky
Pier Angeli ... Norma
Everett Sloane ... Irving Cohen
Eileen Heckart ... Ma Barbella
Sal Mineo ... Romolo
Harold J. Stone ... Nick Barbella
Joseph Buloff ... Benny
Sammy White Sammy White ... Whitey Bimstein
Arch Johnson ... Heldon
Robert P. Lieb Robert P. Lieb ... District Attorney Hogan (as Robert Lieb)
Theodore Newton ... Athletic Commissioner Edward Eagan
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Storyline

The abuse Rocky Barbella endures at the hand of his father and subsequent run-ins with the law lead him in and out of detention centers and prisons. When it seems he has it together, Rocky is drafted but, refusing to adhere to Army rules, goes AWOL. He takes up boxing to earn quick money, but when he discovers he has a natural talent in the ring, he builds the confidence to pursue his love interest, Norma, and fulfill his potential as a fighter. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

M.G.M presents a most important motion picture See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Sport

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 November 1956 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Somebody Up There Likes Me See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,920,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,528
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(copyright time)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System) (Perspecta Sound)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There had been some opposition to the casting of Paul Newman, since at 31 he was already six years older than James Dean would have been, and his first movie The Silver Chalice (1954) had been a critical and commercial disaster. See more »

Goofs

When Rocky orders the black-and-white soda, a spoon suddenly appears as he's handing back the glass for more seltzer. See more »

Quotes

Rocky: It's not my fault that she's pregnant!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with the following on-screen quote before the title and opening credits: This is the way I remember it... _definitely_. -Rocky Graziano. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Bob Newhart Show: Somebody Down Here Likes Me (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Somebody Up There Likes Me
(1956)
Music by Bronislau Kaper
Lyrics By Sammy Cahn
Sung by Perry Como during the opening and closing credits
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pretty good--and a lot closer to the truth than I expected.
8 February 2012 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Rocky Graziano was a very, very flawed guy to say the least. To be more blunt, until he settled into a career in boxing, he was an antisocial jerk--a blight on society. However, as was the case with most older bio-pics (such as "The Birdman of Alcatraz" and "The Sound of Music"), in order to make a more marketable flick, the truth was often very, very malleable--as the writers took such huge liberties with the facts that the original of the film was hardly recognizable. And, since Rocky was not a very likable guy, I expected a whitewash with this film. Fortunately, the writers stuck reasonably close to the truth and Paul Newman puts in his first excellent performance (after his disaster in "The Silver Chalice").

The film begins with a lovely man (Harold Stone) forcing his young boy to fight. He slaps the little kid around horribly--and it was obvious the father was a complete jerk. From this sort of upbringing, it's understandable why the kid grew up angry (in reality, the father would bit his two sons against each other in boxing matches for his friends to watch--and Rocky's older brother usually beat the snot out of him). This portion of the film shows the many stupid and self-defeating things Rocky did before switching to a life in boxing. Stealing, violence, prison and a stint in military prison--all make up this sordid portion of the movie. To see just how Rocky manages to pull it all together, watch the film.

Overall, well-written and with a very likable performance from Newman. This isn't exactly "Raging Bull" but it is well worth seeing.


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