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Sean Climbs Into The Ring With ROCKY BALBOA!!

Merrick here...
Sean sent in this look from an early screening of ROCKY BALBOA. Talkbackers like to make fun of "Old Sly" shuffling into the ring one more time...which is to be expected, all things considered. And, truth be told, some of the jabs are kind of funny. But such jokes don't change the fact that, to date, early word on this film has been quite positive. Hopefully it'll triumph over the naysayers when it's released this Christmas. I know I'm really looking forward to it...'tis a perfect time to introduce my twelve year old to the whole mythos. Now that I think about it, he's likely to develop a crush on Brigitte Nielsen. I know I did. Maybe I should wait...
Here's Sean...
Okay, they just had one of the first screenings of ROCKY BALBOA here in Orlando at Downtown Disney and I was lucky enough to score seats. There will be some general content spoilers, but I'm not going to get into any specifics. Hopefully some or all of this gets printed... Let's just get one thing out of the way first: It's REALLY good. This is the Rocky we've come to know and love, the Rocky that went the distance with Apollo Creed (as opposed to the Rocky that street fought Tommy Gunn...). It's not a lot of boxing or training really. There's a lot of character scenes here. Which is not to say it's aimless, there's simply not a lot of "action" for a long time, and the movie manages to build character and excitement for the main event. Meanwhile,Stallone manages to talk about some big stuff (namely man's will versus the chaos of nature) without getting too cheesy. People will want to call it cheesy, but think about it. How many movies in recent years have truly had a heroic figure? We need this see, they don't really make movies like this anymore, at least none that are any good. This is more than just a great Rocky movie; this is an ode to man, a celebration of the heroic ideal, a testament to the strength of our volition, a view of man as he might and ought to be. Here, we have in Rocky someone who does what's right and follows his calling based on his beliefs and will, damn the people who would disillusion him. (Echoing the real life story of the people who would mock Stallone for attempting a comeback) As for style, Stallone shoots the movie in a way they don't really make movies anywhere, and it's a welcome change of pace. He utilizes a lot of gentle cuts and cross fades, and amidst some really great photography, especially the grainy night shots. People forget that Stallone can be a really good director. Acting-wise, I wish Stallone didn't get so much crap. He's really a lot better than people give him credit for. Go back and re-watch the original Rambo, or even the original Rocky. He's instantly watchable and fills his characters with great idiosyncrasies in subtle ways that feel natural. Here, he gives one of his best performances and one of the best of the year. He totally inhabits this character, every single moment, the way his sentences kinda trail off at the end, his inherent sense of self and goodness, that look he gets in his eyes when he's hurt or has to dig really deep... Oh, and allow me to quell what was one of my biggest fears going into the movie: Rocky is supposed to fight Mason Dixon based on the outcome of a videogame? I know that sounds like a terrible idea on paper, but it's not QUITE the entire truth. As the simulation is presented in the movie it actually comes off as something you might see on ESPN. It's actually really good and fits in with the reality of this alternate sports universe, where Rocky actually exists and is one of the all-time greats. In fact that's what was so surprising...this is a universe Stallone has created. Here, Rocky is a living legend. Everyone recognizes him walking around town, his restaurant is a local favorite, he's one of those disarming celebrities that's actually as nice in "real life" as one might hope him to be. Everyone loves Rocky. Yet at the same time, everyone is well aware that Rocky has no chance in hell of winning. But that's the position Rocky's always in, isn't it? The movie is not perfect. There's this scene set to a terrible adult contemporary song in the beginning and then this terrible moment in the bar, both near the beginning of the movie, that are obviously terrible and dripping in cheese. Luckily, other than that, the movie soars. It's my favorite movie of the year. Not perfect but my favorite. Because on top of everything I loved about it as an individual movie, at the end of the day, it's a new Rocky movie and it's GOOD. When the training music cues, if you're a movie fan, you'll have no choice but to clap and cheer at the sheer culmination of this moment. A moment that could not exist UNLESS there were 5 other movies preceding it. Same for the incredible match between Rocky and Mason, which is not only great in itself, but also has the weight of 6 movies. Rocky is BETTER because it's a sequel, but it's also a great movie in and of itself. I'm so happy to have seen this. And before anyone says plant...which is unfortunately inevitable...I will say this, I have a BNAT application in and if selected I'll see you at the Alamo Drafthouse and convince you in person that this is one of the year's best. If you use this, just call me "Sean." Real clever, huh? Thanks, Sean

Readers Talkback
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  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:10 a.m. CST

    I'll check it out!

    by Malebolgia


  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:12 a.m. CST


    by Westonian

    hopefully this is good. Trailer didnt look bad to me. I say stallone may have one last good rocky movie in him.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:11 a.m. CST


    by dancinggopher01

    Cannot freaking wait. And if anyone says otherwise, they should just grow a vagina.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:16 a.m. CST


    by JediShaft

    At least Steve Guttenberg stopped making Police Academy movies. Sly, please stop.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:15 a.m. CST


    by jimmy_009

    New Message system sucks too.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:24 a.m. CST

    Hey! What's that growing in the garden?

    by ShogunMaster

    Why it's a Plant... This movie is so unnecessary. He better die at the end of this one, dammit.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:29 a.m. CST

    Yes, cinema is sorely lacking macho male characters!

    by s00p3rm4n

    Especially ones desirous of sexual congress with females. Or the will to use their brawn in lieu of intellect, and the experience to know that that mindset will always be validated by the end of the third act. True kudos, Mr. Stallone. Hopefully your action in making this film will bring back the golden era of male domination. I'm awaiting with the fuck harness and ball gag. I leave the Crisco option up to you, sir.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:29 a.m. CST

    Sean got his ass kicked!!!

    by thebearovingian

    if that is his real name. Is Drago in it? Nyet. Is there any T&A in it? Nyet. Could it possibly be as good as "Sean" says? Nyet.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:31 a.m. CST

    Who wanted this?????

    by El Scorcho

    Please step forward if you wanted a Rocky VI... I didn't think so.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:33 a.m. CST

    The first movie was actually VERY GOOD!

    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    I just watched the first movie a couple of years ago. As cheesey as the rest of them were, the first movie was good -- VERY GOOD. I hope that Stallone reverts back to what set his film apart in the 1970s instead of the cheese of the follow ups. I really want this film to be good.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:43 a.m. CST

    High hopes

    by Anakin Whoopass

    Maybe no one under 30 will go, but that's fine with me. Whoever has the Rocky XXXVIII poster from the set of Airplane II could make fortune at auction.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:44 a.m. CST

    "I'm so happy to have seen this"

    by georges garvaren

    Geewiz, only Sly could write such dribble. You sicken me, Stallone. We want 'Tango & Cash: The Return' !

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:47 a.m. CST

    Only an idiot...

    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    ...would bash a film before they actually viewed it. Jeez -- some "talkbackers" have the IQs of apes!

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:49 a.m. CST

    he dies at the end


    spoiler alert

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:51 a.m. CST

    "This is more than just a great Rocky movie...."

    by damagedinc

    "This is more than just a great Rocky movie; this is an ode to PLANTS, a celebration of the PLANT ideal, a testament to the strength of our PLANT, a view of PLANT as he PLANT and PLANT to be." ...............f'real.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:53 a.m. CST

    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention in my review...

    by Mister Sean

    He does die at the end. In a bizzarre gardening accident. Damn twist endings. Sean

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:01 a.m. CST

    A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and a Plant Grows on AICN

    by hailcrassus

    Holy hist, you couldn't buy this review at a nursery.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:08 a.m. CST

    At the end, Rocky gets eaten by an Ent

    by PervOmatic

    Damn killer plants...

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:11 a.m. CST

    Ok, ABKing, come out (of the closet) and reveal urself.

    by IAmJack'sUserID

    I know its you, you knob-shining, plantarific fanboy dorkus.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:14 a.m. CST


    by BadMrWonka

    the Ent comment was funny, I'll admit. but seriously guys, plants get weeded out (pun intended) a lot more than they used to on AICN now. and honestly, I have only seen 1 Rocky movie (the first one, derrr) even though I'm in the prime age range, so I'm not a Rocky apologist. I'm just saying, the trailers haven't been terrible, advance word has been fairly favorable. what would it take for you guys to give this one a pass UNTIL YOU SEE IT? I'll admit, I think Stallone directing it is a little disingenuous, maybe he could have let someone else take a crack at it to ease off some of the negative hype you guys are cultivating. but still, let's just see what we'll see, shall we?

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:21 a.m. CST

    Re:He dies at the end

    by KabutoKoji

    ******Huge Spoiler***** You've been warned. No. Rocky doesn't die at the end. They filmed a couple of scenarios for the fight at the end. Rocky wins. Mason wins. I believe right now they are going with the ending where Mason wins and Rocky loses(like the first film), and I believe that's the ending they will end up using(and it's the one I prefer, although Rocky winning wouldn't bother me at all). Rocky is satisfied and content because to him it was all about going the distance and proving things about and to himself(again, like the first film). The last shot has Rocky at Adrian's grave after the fight. He says-"Adrian, we did it". Movie ends.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:38 a.m. CST

    Planty McBullshit

    by Darth Fabulous

    If Sly is going to revisit his previous glory, where the hell is another installment of Rambo...Rambo gutting insurgents in Iraq or kicking ass in Whogivesafuckistan while getting visited Jor-El style by a CGI Colonel Trautman would be vastly preferable to this nonsense...James Brolin just isn't going to cut the mustard people. Here's hoping his daughter is as hot as John McClane's is.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:06 a.m. CST

    My Mature Opinion

    by A Martian Realm

    I'd hate to find myself in Rocky's 'ring'.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:14 a.m. CST

    The real ending...

    by Alonzo Mosely

    We cut away to see a vegetable Rocky being visited by his wife and learn that he was knocked out in the first round of the first Apollo fight, and that he has been dreaming all the subsequent events...

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:14 a.m. CST


    by quentintarantado

    Why? Why not?

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:45 a.m. CST

    We can grow vaginas now?

    by DoodlyDingDongTickTock


  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:59 a.m. CST

    Christmas Day, I'll be there.......

    by Doc_Strange

    Then my cousin and I will probably end up boxing like we always did when we were kids after seeing the film. That's how good these movies were for us and I expect this one will be the same from what I've seen.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 3:48 a.m. CST

    *shrug* You're not a plant.

    by DarthCorleone

    But if this is the best movie you've seen this year, you don't get out much.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 4:32 a.m. CST

    Sean Greenleaf from Ceramic Pot?

    by JackPumpkinhead

    Or maybe just a deluded fan.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 4:31 a.m. CST


    by Franklin T Marmoset

    I'm a big boxing fan, so I've always had mixed feelings about these Rocky films. On the one hand, they're pretty good fun; but on the other, that boxing nerd in my head won't stop shouting: 'He's a five foot seven white guy! A cruiserweight at best! Why does nobody jab in these fights?' I'd like to see this new Rocky adventure, but I think that head-nerd of mine will be going loopy, what with Mr Stallone being, I'm not sure, about sixty by now. Foreman was considered ancient when he fought Moorer at 45, and he was an actual heavyweight-sized man. Ah, well. Good luck to you, Mr Stallone. I hope your film is good. Also, please don't keep taking those steroids for too long. Those are bad for you.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 4:40 a.m. CST

    I hope the fight is more in line with Rocky/Apollo I

    by darthbinks1220

    While an exaggeration, the first film had almost plausible fight choreography. However, in all the subsequant sequels, every punch was a haymaker. Hands were held at there sides. There was no defense exhibited by the fighters. Still, I believe in this film. The message is that you're never too old to climb a mountain, if that's your choice. Words to live by. I'm there.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 5:12 a.m. CST

    I am sorry, but did anyone ask for this?

    by lionbiu

    I know I sound like a broken record, but who the hell asked for a sequel to has been done to death. The review may or may not be a plant, but it hardly convinces me that this is anything more than a lame attempt at stroking Sly's ego.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 5:53 a.m. CST

    Wankers out in force.

    by C Legion

    Nice to see all the negative, souless tossers ripping the shit out of a film they haven't seen. Oh well, hardly a new phenomenon on AICN. Hey guys, aren't there some pictures from a film based on a bunch of fucking toys you should be freaking out about? As for me I hope Rocky Balboa will be good after the crappy V and the not very good but still chessy fun of III and IV. I'll be there opening weekend, as will most of my mates, because I don't know any guys from 20-40 who don't like Rocky, but then I don't hang out with benders.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 5:56 a.m. CST

    Yo, that's brisk baby...

    by FilmFanatik

    Stop ringing that bell, I can't concentrate. Nothing is over, just get me something to drink.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 6:36 a.m. CST

    It's a wonder there have been six...

    by rbatty024

    Rocky movies, since only the first one was any good. That's five crappy sequels to one decent film. Absolutely incredible.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 7:25 a.m. CST

    Really does sound good

    by Ridge

    I'll brush off the fools and nay sayers and say for myself, that this movie does sound intriguing. I'm going to love seeing Sly act as Rocky again I just know it. We've got this coming out to look forward to then Rambo 4 to be afraid of... what a polar opposite.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 7:55 a.m. CST

    I'm soooooooooooo excited!

    by biggles2_22

    The best movie of the year! Man! I can't wait! I've seen many movies this year, but if this is the best then thank you, dearest reviewer, in advance of, what I'm sure will be a cinamatic orgasm on the same level of, say, Lawrence of Arabia, or Godfather! My senses tingle in anticipation! Cheese, indeed! More like a fine Havarti! I'm sure that the "best movie of the year" is truly an understatement! You must have meant that, nay, it was the sort of cinematic genius that will go down in the anals of history as THE crowning achievment in theater! I can already feel the stern gaze of the "Eye of the Tiger" upon me and I quiver with the "Thrill of The Fight"! All because, you, most honored reviewer, were blessed enough to have witnessed 90-minutes of pure heaven!! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 8:01 a.m. CST

    Definatly a plant.

    by binarybender

    No doubt about it. Still, im gonna check it out - just cause i love rocky.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 8:03 a.m. CST

    As Revenge of the Sith was to SW.....

    by amrisharmpit

    So too will this movie be to the Rocky series - a final installment that is better than the two films before it, but not the first three.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 8:13 a.m. CST

    How do you not be a plant in a review...

    by tile_mcgillus

    It seems people scream plant if the review is even slightly positive. Come on people. What can you say to not be labeled a plant? "Fuck this fucking shitty movie!" I guess. What if you like it though...he did say there were scenes he hated that dripped with cheese. For fuck's sake people, it is a Rocky movie, you know you are going to like it or hate before the lights dim. Count me there...with bells on.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 8:18 a.m. CST


    by sonofbronson

    I thought they tied everything up nicely with Rocky V what with the recap of b&w stills over the credits. I also don't like the fact that they dropped Adrian but overall I'm optimistic about this one and I hope he pulls it off

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 8:35 a.m. CST

    Prob. not a Plant

    by veritasses

    but it could just be someone with really bad taste or an absurd amount of love for Stallone/Rocky. It's hard to believe they can make anything the audience isn't going to scoff when they see a 60 yr old man enter the ring.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 9:04 a.m. CST

    Knock Knock! Who's there? PLANT! PLANT!

    by boba_rob

    Just wanted to join in the fun. Can't wait to see it, has got to be better than the last 1 1/2 Rocky Films (I thought the first half of Rocky 4 was good, with the end being very unrealistic, even in Rocky's world).

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 9:18 a.m. CST

    Does Conti's ROCKY fanfare feature in this? I hope so

    by Spacesheik

    otherwise its gonna put a bad dent into the flick - i wanna hear that rousing fanfare again when he trains and runs

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 9:24 a.m. CST

    Oh Yeah Bring Back Bridgette

    by CaptDanielRoe

    Tyson is talking about fighting the femmes nowadays so why not Rocky? She can be all "new Russia" and stuff whereas Dolph can train Rocky in an old Soviet bunker, Apollo-style, in order to get revenge on the bitch who dumped him. Admit it, it's a solid gold idea.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 10:19 a.m. CST

    Yeah but Tyson doesn't take himself seriously anymore..

    by Ricky Henderson

    He's a walking joke and he knows it--that's why he's pulling an Andy Kaufman and boxing women. Tyson's shennanigans are just a build up to the inevitable outcome of "Iron Mike" in the ring fighting a Lion. Mark my words. It's intentionally comedic. And yet somehow, a movie starring an octogenarion boxer takes itself seriously?! Please, this thing is gonna bomb hardcore.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 10:34 a.m. CST


    by boxer84

    Why is it that if a movie gets a good review it is automatically assumed that it is a plant giving the review? I mean, I myself would like to belive that there are some movies actually worth watching. Oh, and Stallone is the man.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 10:39 a.m. CST

    That review is Plantastic!!!

    by beefywhore

    Just kidding...wouldn't matter if this WAS a plant. I can't wait to see this!

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 11:44 a.m. CST


    by abcdefghijklmnop

    I hope the film is good, but it's just not anything I need to see. I made my peace with the Rocky series a long time ago, and I don't need for every film from my childhood to have another sequel. Truthfully, I'd rather see Stallone practice what he preaches, and actually do something NEW as an actor.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 12:34 p.m. CST

    Just to clarify...

    by Mister Sean

    I didn't say it was the "best movie of the year," I said it was one of the best and my personal favorite movie of the year. This movie is not going to convert the cynics, but if you're a movie geek, you'll be happy with the movie and if you're a Rocky fan, you're going to be VERY happy. Also, when I said this movie is an ode to man and a view of man as he might and ought to be, I didn't mean that in a "macho" sort of way. Rather, I mean that we have a hero who acts upon and is proud of his free will. He overcomes this terrible world we live in and perseveres more than any other hero in movies this year. Jack Sparrow and Wolverine are anti-heroes, Ethan Hunt is not fully fleshed out, Superman is more often ruled by the will of society, not himself. So yes, I was very happy with Rocky.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:09 p.m. CST

    I don't think you're a plant, Sean...

    by Childe Roland

    ...but I do think you're a pod person. I have no doubt that this movie could be entertaining, depsite what I feel is an inherent absurdity in both the premise of the film and the idea to even make it in the first place. Everything I've seen from it so far has me curious and open to the idea it might be a lot of fun. But your insistence that "we need this movie" has me worried about you. In no reality does any permutation of "we" (used to represent a societal subset) have a burning need for another Rocky film. This movie isn't going to reinvigorate a culture or imbue its peoples with any new or refreshed moral perspective. In fact, it's pretty clear that it's not going to give us anything new or different at all. And that's just fine. It doesn't have to. It just needs to make some of us want to see it so Stallone can pad his retirement account. That's its purpose and its potential. Nothing more. The fact that you honestly seem to believe otherwise leads me to believe your version of reality is precariously balanced on a foundation of naivete and wishful ignorance...and it's destined for a messy fall when you wake to find that the world isexactly the same the day after this movie comes out as it was the day before. Also, the fact that you referred to "the original Rambo" leads me to believe you are in no way qualified to review a film. The movie was called First Blood and it was as different from either of the Rambo films as Rocky V was from Rocky I. Rambo in First Blood wasn't a Ra-Ra Reagan era hero. He was a mentally unbalanced drifter with a tragic habit of pissing people off by reminding them of the evil that men do on their behalf. When John Rambo turned into the Rambo you so gushingly recall, Stallone pissed all over everything he acheived in First Blood.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 1:48 p.m. CST

    Pod People

    by abcdefghijklmnop

    Well said, Childe. We certainly don't "need" another Rocky film, especially since there's nothing wrong with the first one. If I want to hear Stallone's message, I'll just watch that one. Hasn't he spent the last three decades telling us that the first film is timeless?

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:12 p.m. CST

    Mr McPlant of the McPlant farm, Plantville, Plantizona

    by performingmonkey

    Rated NC-Planteen for strong Plantage, Plants of a Plantual nature and one Plant of extreme Plantasy Plantolence. I'm still checking it out though so I don't give a Plant.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:23 p.m. CST

    Rocky was an awesome movie.

    by Nice Marmot

    The sequels disgraced it so fucking BAD. Every time I see that scene where Apollo is talking about materialistic shit & his manager catches Rocky on TV punching the slabs of meat with his bloody fists, I get all fired up. I like the original Rocky enought that I still hope that this new one is the quality sequel I've always wanted. Either way, too bad I can't erase 2-5 from my memory.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 2:47 p.m. CST

    I hear you on Indy IV, BSB.

    by Childe Roland

    That one just stinks of the same motives Lucas employed in his fan-milking prequel venture. It's not about story or character for him anymore (if it were, he'd realize the character was left in a perfect place at the end of Last Crusade). It's about dollar signs. The difference between this and Indy IV is that I'd actually like to see old Rocky climb into the ring and get his bell rung. I don't want to see old Indy break a hip jumping onto another Nazi truck or tank. Rocky never had his iconic, fitting end. Indy rode off into the sunset with his dad. One of these return trips to the well is clearly more unnecessary than the other.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 3:15 p.m. CST

    I just assumed I couldn't count on continuity...

    by Childe Roland

    ...of age given that older Harrison played younger Indy already in Temple of Doom. I'd be far less skeptical of the whole concept if they were, indeed, setting it in the sixties (or, better yet, the late fifties) and had Indy exercising his brain more than his back. But they (Lucas and Spielberg) haven't made an Indy movie like that yet (closest they came was Connery's character in Last Crusade, and he was largely comic relief). Here's hoping that, if this does happen, that's the route they'll try to go.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 5 p.m. CST



    I'm the sixty-seventh poster on this talkback! YESSSSS!!!

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 5:23 p.m. CST

    Can't Wait

    by Captain Sulu

    I personally like sequels when they are well done. I could've watched Star Trek movie after Star Trek movie if they hadn't started sucking. James Bond can go on forever. Same with X-Men or Rambo. If this movie's good, I want to see it. If it's Superman IV bad, ow.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 6:20 p.m. CST


    by phoebe666

    "We need this movie" What a bunch of horsehit. Heroes. Give me a freakin' break. Americans and their heroes. How embarrassing. Who the hell wants to watch an old washed-up has-been don the gloves? Christ!

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 7:22 p.m. CST

    stallone is underrated as an actor

    by slappy jones

    it is almost a cliche to bring up this film but his performance in Copland is fucking amazing.....he can do it..he just needs to makie better choices.... and why does everyone rag on rocky 5...its the best film of the series..he takes it back to the streets...the streets dude

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 8:38 p.m. CST

    We don't want movies like this...

    by Christopher3

    We NEED movies like this, if only to demonstrate the triumph of the human spirit in the face of major rights issues to the Rambo franchise. Apologies to Switters.

  • Oct. 25, 2006, 11:06 p.m. CST

    Ode to Man

    by Dersu

    "This is more than just a great Rocky movie; this is an ode to man, a celebration of the heroic ideal, a testament to the strength of our volition, a view of man as he might and ought to be. Here, we have in Rocky someone who does what's right and follows his calling based on his beliefs and will, damn the people who would disillusion him." The thing is, that really all of the Rocky movies were about this in some form or another. In fact, a great many of Stallone's movies have dealt with these ideals. That doesn't mean that all of them were good. Don't get me wrong, I'm looking forward to it, as “Rocky Balboa” looks like it might be the first true sequel to “Rocky,” and I'm glad Sean really liked it. And this is a good review. I like the fact that Sean actually discusses the filmmaking attributes and doesn’t just focus on plot, characters, and acting. I hope this will do for Stallone what "Unforgiven" or (perhaps more appropriately) "Million Dollar Baby" did for Eastwood. All of the Rocky movies had a great deal of potential and were full of good, or at least interesting, ideas, but I feel that only the original “Rocky” ever really lived up to its potential, as the others tended to be hokey rehashes. “You can’t win, Rocky!” “I have to try!” And so on. I also remember Stallone talking about the ending of “Rocky” (*spoiler alert*) where he and Adrian embrace and there’s a freeze-frame followed by a slow fade to black. Stallone said that the freeze-frame was to capture this moment as being the high point of Rocky’s life and the fade to black symbolized how his life was going to basically go down hill after this moment, that Rocky would never get a chance like this again. So Stallone sold out his ideal pretty fast, but who can blame him? In the same position, I’d have probably done the same thing as would a great many people. I just hope this movie doesn’t turn out to be a simple cash-in because Stallone’s career is no longer in peak condition.

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 12:22 a.m. CST

    a real plant wouldn't gush that much

    by God Shamgodd

    It would be too obvious. And, by the way, people don't write "dribble." They write "drivel." (Scuze me, while I kiss this guy.)

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 1:17 a.m. CST

    Tango and Cash 2: The Rise of Captain Ron

    by ScienceMan

    This is the movie we need. Tango and Cash discover that Captain Ron is the long-separated twin of Kurt Russell's character in Tango and Cash (I can't remember if he was Tango or Cash). Also, as I recall, Tango and Cash featured a scene with both Sly and Kurt in drag. How often do we get to see that? Jack Burton shakes the pillars of Heaven. Captain Ron rules. Anyone who automatically calls every positive review a plant is an assface loser whose highest ambition is to naysay the works of others. Not to say plants don't exist, but not every good review is a plant. Some are just weeds. Good day!

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 2:31 a.m. CST


    by DocPazuzu

    It had to be said.

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 5:24 a.m. CST


    by Franklin T Marmoset

    I like this idea of teaming up two classic Kurt Russell creations, and if I were one of those studio executive type guys I would be 'greenlighting' you right now. I have notes, though. Could we kill Tango or Cash or whichever one is not Kurt Russell in the first act? This leaves the rest of the film free for all manner of double Kurt shenanigans, which will play great in the mid west. Ron Howard is attached to direct.

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 9:34 a.m. CST

    The end credits better feature the song "The Boxer"

    by Sith Witch

    Come on; It's the last chance to tie an iconic song into the most iconic boxing franchise ever.

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 11:47 a.m. CST

    Re: a real plant wouldn't gush that much

    by abcdefghijklmnop

    I don't think he's a plant either, but he's obviously pretty biased towards the film. Nothing wrong with that, but I tend to take fan reviews with a grain of salt. This film has already been screened several times. But where is all the insider buzz or praise? Why are the only reviews by fans who "really hope everyone will keep an open mind"? This film opens in less than two months, and yet virtually no one aside from fans are talking about it. Why is no one touting this film as "Copland II"- a film which had lots of positive buzz early on?

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 12:45 p.m. CST

    I just saw the trainer's speech from this movie...

    by Childe Roland

    ...again, and I think it's probably an excellent metaphor for the movie's entertainment value. Essentially, he tells Rocky that because he lacks speed, finesse and agility, he needs to focus on blunt force trauma. This movie is building hurting bombs for folks who have no use for originality, style or depth. Just a bunch of familiar blows designed to keep us disoriented so we won't be too critical and, hopefuylly, have nostalgic impact to knock us out. I'd advise you all to keep your guard up and protect your heads while watching...but when has that advice ever been followed in a Rocky film?

  • Oct. 26, 2006, 12:44 p.m. CST


    by davidlyons

    when in fucks name is mangold going to release a directors cut... half the film is on the cutting room floor

  • Oct. 28, 2006, 4:09 p.m. CST

    well good for rocky

    by ubersnarf

    I for one think it's nice that someone is making a movie without irony, cynicism, or murky self-pity. Bring on the escapism, dammit! Although I really don't want to have to watch Rocky II-V since everyone says they stink... hrmph...