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Rocky (1976)

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A small-time boxer gets a supremely rare chance to fight a heavy-weight champion in a bout in which he strives to go the distance for his self-respect.

Director:

John G. Avildsen
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Popularity
962 ( 186)
Top Rated Movies #220 | Won 3 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sylvester Stallone ... Rocky
Talia Shire ... Adrian
Burt Young ... Paulie
Carl Weathers ... Apollo
Burgess Meredith ... Mickey
Thayer David ... Jergens
Joe Spinell ... Gazzo
Jimmy Gambina ... Mike
Bill Baldwin ... Fight Announcer
Al Silvani ... Cut Man (as Al Salvani)
George Memmoli ... Ice Rink Attendant
Jodi Letizia ... Marie
Diana Lewis ... TV Commentator
George O'Hanlon ... TV Commentator
Larry Carroll ... TV Interviewer
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Storyline

Rocky Balboa is a struggling boxer trying to make the big time, working as a debt collector for a pittance. When heavyweight champion Apollo Creed visits Philadelphia, his managers want to set up an exhibition match between Creed and a struggling boxer, touting the fight as a chance for a "nobody" to become a "somebody". The match is supposed to be easily won by Creed, but someone forgot to tell Rocky, who sees this as his only shot at the big time. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Meet the "Italian Stallion": a small-time guy with big-time guts who yearns to be a hero...just once! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Instagram | MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 December 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rocky See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$960,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,000,000, 5 December 1976

Gross USA:

$117,235,247

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$225,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was ultimately green-lit by United Artists by a misunderstanding of sorts. Mike Medavoy was the United Artist's top man in Los Angeles, and he loved the project, but he needed to convince the head office in New York City. Arthur Krim, United Artists CEO at the time, said he'd consider it, but he wanted to know more about the writer Sylvester Stallone, who was also going to star. Stallone had recently appeared in a film called The Lords of Flatbush (1974), where he had also gotten a writing credit for 'additional dialogue'. Medavoy thought Stallone was excellent in the piece, so he sent a copy of the film to New York City, and told them to watch it. The film is about a Brooklyn street gang, and alongside Stallone, it featured unknowns Perry King, Henry Winkler and Paul Mace. During the screening, Krim asked the executives viewing the film, "Which one is Stallone?", and someone told him that it was the blond kid (actually Perry King). Krim pointed out that that guy didn't look Italian, and Stallone was an Italian name, to which he was told Stallone must be from Northern Italy, where there are a lot of blue eyed, blond haired Italians. Krim thought about this for a moment and then announced that he liked this guy Stallone (still talking about King), and so he green-lit the movie. Several months later, when he realized his mistake, Krim was far from amused. See more »

Goofs

At the end of the fight, when Apollo and Rocky are hugging, Apollo's manager comes up to him in the close-up shot. Then they switch to an aerial shot, and Apollo's manager jumps over the ropes into the ring. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Club fight attendee: Come on, Spider!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Butkus the dog is credited as "Butkus Stallone". See more »

Alternate Versions

In the DVD, the Dolby Digital & DTS 5.1 tracks omit a short musical cue of Rocky's theme when the bell rings at the end of the 15th round, which is present in the original mono soundtrack. See more »


Soundtracks

Silent Night, Holy Night
(1818) (uncredited)
Music by Franz Xaver Gruber
Played on the radio
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A great Sylvester Stallone film
18 February 2005 | by rbverhoefSee all my reviews

If you think Sylvester Stallone has made nothing but stinkers you just have to see 'Rocky'. This is a brilliant film, based on Stallone's own screenplay, where he plays a complex character in such a terrific way it is not strange people thought this was going to be a great actor. Compare it to another great film about a boxer, 'Raging Bull', and 'Rocky' will be better at some points. It goes without saying that it's quite an achievement.

The story is about Rocky Balboa (Stallone), a boxer who once had a glorious future, but now fights for little money in gyms. Then, out of the blue, he gets the chance to fight the heavyweight champ Apollo (Carl Weathers), a stunt from his side. Although Rocky seems to have no chance he starts his training to make the best of it, although at first he is too proud to accept any help. The scene where he finally accepts the help from his old trainer Mickey (Burgess Meredith) is one of the best scenes in the film. Rocky also starts dating the very shy girl Adrian (Talia Shire), sister of his friend Paulie (Burt Young).

'Rocky' is a terrific film in every aspect. The acting is what amazed me the most. Stallone gives such an impressive performance it is very hard to believe he is also the star of films like 'Over the Top', 'Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot' and 'Judge Dredd', and from the other 'Rocky'-films for that matter. Not only Stallone is impressive, Shire, Young and Meredith find perfect notes for their characters as well. Every little thing that happens seems natural through their acting and of course Stallone's screenplay does a great job here. Director John G. Avildsen serves this material the way he should. Of course he is no Martin Scorsese, 'Raging Bull' stays the better directed film, but he knows how to tell this story.

I do not like boxing very much, so a boxing-film is not something I would enjoy. But this is not a boxing-film, it is a film about a boxer. It tells about a character who happens to be a boxer running for a title. This is probably one of the points where the other four 'Rocky'-films fail and where films like this one and 'Raging Bull' and Clint Eastwood's 'Million Dollar Baby' succeed.


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