I was watching this movie and had the sudden realization that the montage I was watching had been going on for a good 15 minutes. This movie is ridiculous. It's essentially about jingoism and beefcake. If only he had punched more slabs of meat and pulled more dogsleds, Apollo Creed might still be alive. It's not enough to have a terrific body, the only way to beat a giant scary blond Russian dude is to perform a series of physically taxing menial tasks to uplifting music. I have no idea why Rocky won in the end. Ain't like I just ruined anything; it's practically on the cover of the movie. Much as Stallone loves him some montages, they kind of served to confuse me. We see like twenty minutes of really intense training in both the Balboa camps and Drago camps. Drago's are scientific and precise, while Rocky's are utterly arbitrary and folksy. There is no real reason given as to why it was Rocky that won. All things being equal, the bigger bloke should have won.
I wanted to see Rocky 4 because Dolph Lundgren was huge and scary and mighty easy on the eyes, and I wanted to see him pound on someone while shirtless. In fact, toward the end when his face started swelling up, I lost interest completely. In that sense, I was not disappointed. Lundgren can be really really scary when he wants to be, such as when he's being interviewed ringside after killing Apollo. Drago is a really cool character, but he is completely and totally one-dimensional. I was so disappointed. His dialogue was classic and profoundly menacing, but I just wish it had been a little more extensive.
Rocky Balboa is a very boring man. He loves his wife and is compelled to punch things over some sort of misplaced sense of honor. That's all he'll ever be, and he will never develop as a character furthur than that. Drago on the other hand is mysterious. What lurks behind that stone visage, language barrier and hulking frame? You never really find out. I had such hope when he mentioned his difficulty in breaking his opponent that he would express some impressed surprise and respect. The best we get is "he is like a piece of iron", and some abstract outburst about fighting Rocky on his own behalf, rather than that of the Soviet Union. Then, after 16 rounds, he falls over from exhaustion and Rocky pulls some bullshit moral out of his ass about how people can change. We never see Drago again and the movie just ends. Pfft, whatever.