Apollo's Trainer: He doesn't know it's a damn show! He thinks it's a damn fight!
"His whole life was a million-to-one shot."
Rocky is a beloved underdog classic. The name itself has become synonymous with sheer willpower. Sure it is one big cliche and the main theme has been done a million times, but there is something to be said for a movie that can pull you in like this one does. We know what to expect from the very outset with Rocky aka The Italian Stallion. He is a dumb, poor, low rent boxer who fights other no name boxers for very little money. He also collects for a loan shark on the side. We know we are supposed to grow to love this dumb guy who talks too much. The success of the film relies on us being able to love this character. So based purely on that, I like the film. Every time I watch it, I laugh at the stupidity of some of the scenes, like when Rocky is walking and does his little air punch routine; but I always love the character by the end.
Rocky gets his shot at the title when Apollo Creed hand picks him because of the nickname The Italian Stallion. He knows the name will sell, just as he knows that the underdog story will sell. Rocky isn't so much a sports film, as it is a story of a man who finally gets a chance in life. It's also a little play on the American dream, as Rocky has a chance to make it big when just yesterday he had absolutely nothing. Stallone also throws in a nice, if slightly awkward, love story. Stallone's screenplay explores a lot of themes and none of them are original by any means, but somehow he still pulls everything into a well executed film.
The popularity of Rocky is pretty crazy. You can't go a week without seeing it on television. Its appeal with men is also ridiculous. It has grown to be included in the genre of the guy movies. It's one of those films every guy must see, and most have. The ones that haven't would never admit it either; they just forgot about the scene you are talking about. The movie hasn't aged as well as one would hope, and it's easy to find problems with it now, but still I have troubles saying anything bad about the film.
In reality this film isn't nearly as good as a lot of people say it is. It isn't a masterpiece and if you think it is, you're wrong. It's highly overrated; that's just a fact. Still, I have to say I like it more than I should. There's something about the movie that draws you in and makes you unable to hate it, when in reality you should. What did this movie add to the underdog story? Nothing, yet everything.