Support local journalism. Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Rocky Balboa

Posted on Thu, Dec 21, 2006 at 4:00 AM

Rocky Balboa
Studio: MGM Distribution Company
Rated: PG
Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Burt Young, Milo Ventimiglia, Antonio Tarver, Geraldine Hughes
Director: Sylvester Stallone
WorkNameSort: Rocky Balboa
Our Rating: 3.50
Smartly, Rocky Balboa not only acknowledges how ridiculous and unseemly it is to resubmit the Italian Stallion into the pop-culture fray of 2006, but wraps the entire movie around that premise. Not simply nostalgic, but also a 90-minute statement on nostalgia itself, this unlikely sixth installment in the Rocky saga defies expectations by staying true to the against-all-odds core of the first film and making liberal use of visual quotations ' scenery, cinematography, film stock â?¦ hell, entire scenes ' that remind the audience why they cared about this dumb boxer in the first place. Stallone gamely refuses to pretend that Balboa in 2006 is anything but a past-his-prime, punch-drunk fighter, acting in a way that's almost parodic. When he circulates through his restaurant (named, naturally, Adrian's), robotically telling stories and getting pictures snapped with patrons, it's as humanizing as it is pathetic, and it's just one of the many methods used to hammer home the idea that this isn't 1976 Philadelphia anymore. Sure, it's obscene in its inspirational positivity, from Bill Conti's theme music during training sessions and the chants of 'Rocky! Rocky! Rocky!â?� after the climactic fight, but you'd have to be a cold-hearted asshole not to get a little worked up. Rocky Balboa may not be as good as the first two Rocky movies, but it's nowhere near as bad as the fifth. Which is about all you can ask.


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 20, 2021

View more issues


© 2021 Orlando Weekly

Website powered by Foundation