Rocky Week – Rocky V (1990)

rockyDirector: John G Avildsen

Writer: Sylvester Stallone (Screenplay)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Sage Stallone, Burgess Meredith, Tommy Morrison, Richard Gant, Tony Burton


Plot: Reluctantly retired from boxing and back from riches to rags, Rocky takes on a new protege who betrays him; As the champ’s son must adjust to his family’s new life after bankruptcy


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Incomplete Sequel


Story: Rocky V starts with Rocky (Stallone) struggling after his latest fight with Ivan Drago but he returns home a national hero. Returning home Rocky finds that not everything is going well, he finds out Paulie (Young) has lost all his money leaving him bankrupt and to make matters worse he finds himself suffering from health problems.

With his last property the gym he learnt to be the champion in he meets hunger fighter Tommy Gunn (Morrison) that talks Rocky into managing him. After Tommy turns him back on Rocky, Rocky wants to step up for revenge where Rocky also has to deal with his growing son living in his shadow.

Rocky V tries to offer something new and I will say it does offer a new idea of trying to turn Rocky into a trainer that gets betrayed. My issue with this is that we don’t get a full revenge on this because a street fight wasn’t what we were looking for. This isn’t going to be a special compared to previous instalments and does feel very flat by the end.


Actor Review


Sylvester Stallone: Rocky returns home a hero only to find himself with nothing, when he meets Tommy Gunn he sees his shot to get back to the big time even if it is only as a trainer. He starts to forget about his family even though they continue to stand next to him but when he finally sees what is going on he needs to step up to be the father he never had. Sylvester does a basic good job in this role without really excelling.rocky himself

Talia Shire: Adrian is the wife of Rocky trying to make him hang his gloves up for health reasons, she is always going to supporting him even if they are back where they started, she is Rocky’s rock. Talia does all she needs to do in this role.

Tommy Morrison: Tommy ‘Machine’ Gunn is the young fighter that Rocky takes under his wing to take to the top, he turns his back on Rocky for money as an ambitious promoter uses him as bait. All Tommy wants to get respect but has no idea how to really earn it. Tommy is good in this role as the upstart fighter.

Sage Stallone: Rocky Balboa Jr is the son of the great fighter, he wants to be like his father but living in the downtown area is a real eye opener for him, but like his father he learns to adapt to any fight. Sage gives us a good performance in this role.

Support Cast: Rocky V has the supporting cast we expect in Rocky movies now with Paulie still being around.

Director Review: John G AvildsenJohn gives us a basic chapter in the Rocky saga that won’t go down as anyone favourite.


Sports: Rocky V is good basic sports movie without being anything special.

Settings: Rocky V brings the story back to the beginning settings we once saw.
: Rocky V is one for the fans to continue watching. (Franchise Fans Watch)


Best Part: Rocky Jr standing up for himself.

Worst Part: Final fight.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $41 Million

Budget: $42 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 44 Minutes

Tagline: Go for it!


Overall: Good basic chapter of the franchise.



Rocky Week – Rocky IV (1985)

rocky 4Director: Sylvester Stallone

Writer: Sylvester Stallone (Screenplay)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, Brigitte Nielsen, Tony Burton, Dolph Lundgren


Plot: After iron man Drago, a highly intimidating 6-foot-5, 261-pound Soviet athlete, kills Apollo Creed in an exhibition match, Rocky comes to the heart of Russia for 15 pile-driving boxing rounds of revenge.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Toughest Test


Story: Rock IV starts as Rocky (Stallone) is still champion but a new challenge comes to the shores of USA, the Russian’s bring their biggest name Drago (Lundgren) an amateur boxer who has been bred to destroy, he doesn’t say much living his wife Ludmilla (Nielsen) doing all the talking. Apollo (Weathers) decides he wants to face Drago in an exhibition match to see just how good Drago is.

When Drago kills Apollo in the ring the world sees how good Drago really is and now he has set his sights on Rocky. Rocky gives up his title so he can go to Russia for this fight against everyone’s wishes but he wants to prove to the world Drago is beatable.

Rocky IV really has a much small but similar storyline to what we have seen before, it is Rocky going into a fight against someone who is bigger, stronger and a favourite in a fight. We do have the highest level of personal story on this with the death of Apollo in the ring but once you see past this we just see the same training montage, the same fight, the same discussion about whether to fight or not. A standalone film this is ok but in the end we have seen it all before.


Actor Review


Sylvester Stallone: Rocky is the champion of the world when the big Russian turns up wanting to fight him, Apollo jumps in to take on the Russian only to get killed in the ring. Rocky gives up his title to avenge Apollo’s death in Drago’s backyard of Russia. Sylvester gives the performance we have all come to know in this franchise.rocky

Talia Shire: Adrian doesn’t think either men should fight Drago and after Apollo’s death she is completely against Rocky even considering fighting the giant super athlete. Talia again really doesn’t get used as much as she should.

Burt Young: Paulie is the manager of Rocky now following him into every battle even the one in Russia. Burt starts to get a bigger role but gets forgotten in the final third.

Carl Weathers: Apollo sees the Russian Drago comes to America and wants to be the first person to face him in the ring. Against all advice from Rocky he steps in the ring with his cocky nature only for it to be his final fight. Carl gives us a good performance giving his character a final farewell.

Dolph Lundgren: Drago is the Russia super athlete who has come to America to prove himself in the ring, he has been trained with science to be stronger than any fighter we have seen yet. He kills Apollo in the first match leading to him having a fight against Rocky. He is an emotionless fighting machine that does his talking in the ring. Dolph makes for a great opponent for Rocky being bigger and stronger than anyone he has faced before.drago


Support Cast: Rocky IV continues to have the trademark boxing characters being used in the film.

Director Review: Sylvester StalloneSylvester gives us what we want to see in this film and increased emotional level and an underdog beating a strongest enemy.


Sports: Rocky IV has the deadliest boxing match we have seen Rocky in to date and the first one that doesn’t include him.

Music: Rocky IV is filled with classic 80’s montage music.

Settings: Rocky IV takes the action to Russia to show Rocky against a hostile crowd.
: Rocky IV is one for all the fans of the franchise to enjoy but it isn’t the strongest entry in the franchise. (Franchise Fans)


Best Part: Drago is the best opponent for Rocky

Worst Part: Seen it all before now.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $128 Million

Budget: $30 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

Tagline: He Could Have Stopped The Fight. He Could Have Saved His Best Friend’s Life. But Now, The Only Thing He Can’t Do Is Walk Away.

Trivia: When shooting the film, Sylvester Stallone decided that for the shooting of the fight, he and Dolph Lundgren should hit one another for real, so as to increase the intensity of the scene. After doing three takes of Rocky taking shots to ribs, Stallone felt a burning in his chest, but ignored it. Later that night, he had difficulty breathing and was taken to a nearby emergency room. It was discovered that his blood pressure was over 200, and he had to be flown on a low-altitude flight from Canada to St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, where he remained in intensive care for eight days. What had happened was that Lungren had punched him so hard in the chest, Stallone’s heart had slammed up against his breastbone and began to swell, cutting off the blood supply and restricting the oxygen flow throughout the body.


Overall: Weakest entry to the series to date


Rocky Week – Rocky III (1982)

rockDirector: Sylvester Stallone

Writer: Sylvester Stallone (Screenplay)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, Burgess Meredith, Tony Burton, Mr T, Hulk Hogan


Plot: After winning the ultimate title and being the world champion, Rocky falls into a hole and finds himself picked up by a former enemy.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Career Continues


Story: Rocky III starts with Rocky (Stallone) going on title defence after title defence becoming the biggest name in boxing. Rocky is living the high life with his wife Adrian (Shire), trainer Micky (Burgess) and friend Paulie (Young) but the challenger in the wings Clubber Lang (Mr T) keeps get over looked for event like charity match against wrestler Thunderlips (Hogan).

When Rocky learns the truth that he has been handpicked opponents he is determined to face Clubber Lang to prove he can beat anybody. When Clubber defeats Rocky it is the loss of a personally friend that is what hurts Rocky the most but it also motivates him to want to come back stronger and defeat the arrogant new champion with an old enemy Apollo Creed (Weathers) supporting him.

Rocky III brings us full circle as we now see the underdog Rocky having to be the guy everyone wanting a shot at. This works we get to see the rise to fame and all the benefits and problems along with how determined people are to take their shots. Sure we do see how easily a champion can be defeated and need to change his game to win again. This will always go down as the beginning of the downfall of the Rocky films but still does hold its own compared to later issue.


Actor Review


Sylvester Stallone: Rocky is now the world heavyweight champion of the world, he beats a string off opponents before wanting to announce his retirement. Rocky gets pushed into a fight against hot shot Clubber Lang who defeats him and a close friend dies Rocky must put his difference with Apollo to come back and retain his title. Sylvester gives us a performance you would expect to see in the role of Rocky now.rocky

Talia Shire: Adrian is Rocky’s wife but really doesn’t get much to do in this whole film, she is there to support him but that is about it. Talia hardly even used which is disappoint because of how important her character is meant to be.

Burt Young: Paulie wants to be part of the Rocky team and is delighted to get a chance in the position that Rocky gives him. Burt also falls into supporting role without really doing to much.

Carl Weathers: Apollo is the former enemy who steps in to teach Rocky how to defeat Clubber Lang, he pushes Rocky in a way that Mickey never could. Carl does a good job in this role where he ends up being training.

Mr T: Clubber Lang is the arrogant boxer who wants a chance at the title, he was the number one contender and defeats Rocky but his attitude has made himself enemies in the industry as he must face Rocky in a rematch. Mr T does actually give u a good performance showing this is how a lot of boxer act now.

Support Cast: Rocky III continues to have the standard supporting cast for all boxing films.

Director Review: Sylvester StalloneSylvester is one actor that knows how he wants to make a film and he is does what you would expect from him.


Sports: Rocky III is your typical sports films where we do end up having extra boxing than previous day.

Music: Rocky III continues to use the iconic music which gets used more than we heard in the previous films.

Settings: Rocky III keeps the settings similar but doesn’t make a point of them like previous films.

Suggestion: Rocky III is one for all the franchise fans to watch but don’t start here. (Franchise Fans)


Best Part: Training.

Worst Part: You know where it is going.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $122.8 Million

Budget: $17 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 39 Minutes

Tagline: The Excitement… The Power… The Man..


Overall: Solid addition to the series.


Rocky Week – Rocky II (1979)

rocky 2Director: Sylvester Stallone

Writer: Sylvester Stallone (Screenplay)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, Burgess Meredith


Plot: Rocky struggles in family life after his bout with Apollo Creed, while the embarrassed champ insistently goads him to accept a challenge for a rematch.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Great Continuing Story


Story: Rocky II starts right where the last film finished as we see aftermath with Rocky (Stallone) and Apollo (Weathers) both being treated in hospital, continuing their rivalry on camera. Rocky wants to treat his friends and loved ones well with his new wealth which includes marrying Adrian (Shire).

When Rocky starts struggling to make ends meet he tries his hand in different fields but constantly fails, with a pregnant wife Rocky turns to the only thing he knows and that is fighting. When Apollo demands a rematch so he can beat Rocky we are left to watch as he brings all the dirty tricks out there to bring Rocky out of retirement for one last fight.

Rocky II follows on which is a great way to continuing the somewhat incomplete story in the original story. It is great seeing the side effects from sudden rise to fame and how difficult it would be for someone to go back to normal everyday life. We also get to see how pride can get someone into trouble with the problems Apollo is facing after the events in the first one showing how it can take over even the best in a sports stars.


Actor Review


Sylvester Stallone: Rocky fresh off his success and new found fame finds himself struggling with everyday life, he struggles with money and loss of respect from the people who once looked up to him. He finally comes out of retirement to show the world that he wasn’t a one fight wonder. Sylvester gives us a great performance in this role that continues to show he could be a big sports actor.rocky

Talia Shire: Adrian is now married to Rocky and expecting her first child, she has to go back to work to help ends meet as Rocky is struggling to find a job. When she pushes herself too far she finds herself in hospital where she finds herself fighting for her life. Talia gets a bigger role and a much more important role in the film letting her show off her talent in the role.

Burt Young: Paulie is Adrian’s brother who wants to help Rocky through his struggles with his new found success in business thanks to the first fight. Burt unlike Talia really doesn’t get too many scenes in the film.

Carl Weathers: Apollo is embarrassed by how the first fight ended and wants to prove to the world that Rocky was nothing more than a fluke, he goes out to publicly humiliate Rocky until he accepts his challenge for a rematch. Carl gives a better performance in this role where he ends up getting more time to go against Rocky.


Support Cast: Rocky II really continues to just have the standard supporting cast you would expect to see in a sports film.

Director Review: Sylvester StalloneSylvester steps behind the camera for this version of Rocky showing he knows how he wants to tell his story.


Sports: Rocky II has the build up to a big fight which all works for the sports involvement in the story with the boxing looking good too.

Music: Rocky II continues to use the now iconic music being used through the film.

Settings: Rocky II keeps the setting in Philadelphia which shows how one small town man can define the odds.
: Rocky II is one to continue watching the series of films but don’t start with this one. (Franchise Fans)


Best Part: Better story.

Worst Part: Paulie gets a small role.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $85 Million

Budget: $7 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 59 Minutes

Tagline: This time he’s fighting not for glory, not for money, but for love…Once again, the Italian Stallion proves he’s got what it takes.


Overall: Great addition to the original story


Rocky Week – Rocky (1976)

rockyDirector: John G Avildsen

Writer: Sylvester Stallone (Screenplay)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, Burgess Meredith, Thayer David


Plot: Rocky Balboa, a small-time boxer gets a supremely rare chance to fight the heavy-weight champion, Apollo Creed, in a bout in which he strives to go the distance for his self-respect.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Underdog Comes Good


Story: Rocky starts as we meet Rocky (Stallone) an amateur boxer who has never been a spectacular in the ring with an average win/loss rating, he works on the side as muscles for local mobsters and knows everyone in the neighbourhood. When the Champion of the World Apollo Creed (Weathers) comes to town for his big fight his opponent pulled out of the fight due to injury. Not wanting to let the world down Apollo offers Rocky a chance at the title partly as a PR stunt to show he will give anyone a chance and partly so he can get an easy win.

We have to watch Rocky get from a nobody to training for the fight of his life as he starts early romance with Adrian (Shire). Rocky has old friends coming from all angles as they want to be part of his payday but can Rocky really overcome the odds against the greatest boxer on the planet?

Rocky will always go down as one of the greatest underdog stories in sports movie history, sure we know how most of it will end up because everyone has talks about it for years. We know that this is nothing like this would ever happen but it is something we can all enjoy. I would have liked to see more from the Apollo side of the story which is the only bad thing about this one.


Actor Review


Sylvester Stallone: Rocky is the streetwise amateur boxer who dreams off making it one day but until that he is the good guy around the community that also works for local mobster who makes him do the dirty work. When he gets a chance from nowhere to fight the champion he goes into intense training for his once in a lifetime opportunity. Sylvester gives his best performance of his career.rocky fight

Talia Shire: Adrian is the love interest of Rocky, she is a shy lady with a big heart that gets involved after finally giving Rocky a chance to take her out, she becomes part of his inspiration to win. Talia does a good job this role but doesn’t get too much screen time or character development.

Burt Young: Paulie is one of Rocky’s best friend and brother to Adrian. When Rocky gets the fight he starts to try and get his own pay day by trying to make Rocky a celebrity to the world. Burt gives a solid performance but doesn’t really do enough with the character that changes too much through the film.

Carl Weathers: Apollo Creed is the champion of the world, he is prepared for his title defence but when he opponent pulls out he needs to find a new challenge. He hand picks Rocky as a good PR stunt but refuses to do any research on the challenge thinking it will be an easy win. Carl is great in this role as the cocky boxer who thinks he is undefeatable.


Support Cast: Rocky has a supporting cast that you would expect to see from the world of boxing with no one really standing out.

Director Review: John G AvildsenJohn gives us one of the best sporting underdog films of all time.


Sports: Rocky brings us the brilliant sports drama showing how hard it is to train for one moment in a sports person.

Music: Rocky uses that one song in different levels through the film to show the moment going on screen.

Settings: Rocky uses Philadelphia for the settings using the momentums to help identify where we are.

Suggestion: Rocky is one everyone should have seen once because of the inspirational story. (Watch)


Best Part: Training

Worst Part: Not enough time of the supporting cast.

Action Scene Of The Film: Fight


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Has sequels

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: Won 3 Oscars including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Editing

Box Office: $117 Million

Budget: $960,000

Runtime: 1 Hour 59 Minutes

Tagline: His whole life was a million-to-one shot.

Trivia: During his audition, Carl Weathers was sparring with Sylvester Stallone and accidentally punched him on the chin. Stallone told Weathers to calm down, as it was only an audition, and Weathers said that if he was allowed to audition with a ‘real’ actor, not a stand-in, he would be able to do a lot better. Director John G. Avildsen smiled and told Weathers that Stallone was the real actor (and the writer). Weathers looked at Stallone thoughtfully for a moment, and said, “Well, maybe he’ll get better.” Stallone immediately offered him the role.


Overall: A classic that will long stand the test of time