Rocky II


Rocky II

Critics Consensus

Rocky II is a movie that dares you to root again for the ultimate underdog -- and succeeds due to an infectiously powerful climax.



Total Count: 31


Audience Score

User Ratings: 346,171
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Movie Info

After scoring a personal victory (though a physical defeat) in his "Cinderella" bout with Apollo Creed, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) has gone to seed. In this sequel, he allows his celebrity to go to his head and loses the respect of friends and family--not to mention all his money. Against the wishes of his wife "Yo, Adrian" (Talia Shire), Rocky decides upon one more fight to get back on his financial feet. Thus the stage is set for a rematch with Apollo Creed.Like its predecessor, Rocky II made a fortune at the box office.


Sylvester Stallone
as Rocky Balboa
Talia Shire
as Adrian Pennino
Burt Young
as Paulie Pennino
Carl Weathers
as Apollo Creed
Burgess Meredith
as Mickey Goldmill
Tony Burton
as Tony "Duke" Evers
Joe Spinell
as Tony Gazzo
Sylvia Meals
as Mary Anne Creed
Frank McRae
as Meat Foreman
Al Silvani
as Cut Man
Stu Nahan
as Announcer
Bill Baldwin
as Commentator
Jerry Ziesmer
as Salesman
Paul Micale
as Father Carmine
Earl Montgomery Jr.
as Employment Manager #1
Herb Nanas
as Employment Manager #2
Frank Stallone
as Singer #1
Doug Flor
as Singer #3
Robert Kondyra
as Singer #4
James Zazzarino
as Singer #5
Eddie Lopez
as Fighter #1
Taurean Blacque
as Lawyer #1
James J. Casino
as Chink's Manager
Samuel Davis
as Apollo's Bodyguard
Ruth Ann Flynn
as Jewelry Sales Lady
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News & Interviews for Rocky II

Critic Reviews for Rocky II

All Critics (31) | Top Critics (6) | Fresh (22) | Rotten (9)

  • Rocky II contains the flaws of the original: simplistic characterizations, saccharine romance, a tendency to cuteness. But it also fills the heart and quickens the pulse.

    Jul 17, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Stallone and producers Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff know from experience audiences love to root for the underdog and have concocted an irresistible final 30 minutes.

    Mar 26, 2009 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • Sylvester Stallone's follow-up to his runaway success of 1976 is a little more threadbare in spots than the original, but it still has some conviction and spunk.

    Dec 19, 2006 | Full Review…
  • Stallone's performance as a Philadelphia saint in a B movie physique leaves you undecided whether to gag or sob, but the final fight sequences make up for it; a full-blooded Hollywood finale reaching giddy heights of cathartic glee.

    Feb 9, 2006 | Full Review…

    Geoff Andrew

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Rocky II has a waxy feeling, and it never comes to life the way its predecessor did.

    May 9, 2005 | Rating: 2.5/5
  • While cruder than the first film, Rocky II successfully drives its hero back to the underdog status needed to make the final fight as exciting and satisfying as it is.

    Apr 17, 2001 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Rocky II

  • Mar 02, 2016
    More of a coda to Rocky than sparring partner of equal standing, part II nonetheless keeps viewers vested in the continuing saga of the Italian Stallion by deepening the character and then bloodying him up. Taking place immediately after the events of the franchise champ, this chapter asks a lot of the audience, namely cheering for the same fighter in pretty much the same fight with the same opponent even though our titular hero's previous loss defined the character perfectly. Sure, you don't have to win to be a champion, but it's to this powerful sequel's credit that you root for the underdog all over again. Plus, the climactic battle royale makes for some of the most compelling fight scenes ever committed to film. In this PG-rated sports drama, Rocky struggles with family life after his bout with Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers), while the embarrassed champ insistently goads him to accept a challenge for a rematch. At this juncture, Stallone runs the risk of making a sophomore slump and lessening the emotional blows landed by the first chapter. By giving more screen time to the wonderful Talia Shire as Adrian, he actually develops the title character even more. Their romance is palpable, as is the hard-hitting re-match. Stallone might have taken over directing duties from John G. Avildsen, but he exhibits a confidence that makes the transition seem seamless and even one-ups the intensity on the canvas. Bottom line: Much Punch-Drunk Love
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Feb 10, 2013
    Sylvester Stallone is a knockout punch in front and behind the camera as he directs the sequel to his Oscar-winning-hay-maker. Rocky II is somewhat predictable in its story but is held up by it's glorifying humility and visual presentation. 4/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 24, 2012
    After seeing the original Rocky, I felt the sequel would be nothing short of a remake of the first. Rocky 2 actually moves the ball down the field as far a narratives go, and is a great companion film to the first. Not as powerful as the original, but still a good film.
    Bryan D Super Reviewer
  • Oct 09, 2012
    First sequel to Rocky is of course the best. After the match between Apollo Creed and Rocky Balboa, angry fans want a rematch. This is a great sequel, but like with every other sequel, suffers from trying to top the original. I found this sequel to be more character driven, and I quite enjoyed the fact that it focused more on the chemistry between Adrian and Rocky. The story is very well done, and fans of the first should check this film out. Of all the sequels made after Rocky, Rocky II still is the best one because it continues the story that was told in the first and ends it on a high note. The other sequels, though some of them were good tried to reinvent the character, and sometimes didn't capture the feel or essence of the character. This is a fine sequel to a great film, and the filmmakers do their best at delivering an effective sequel to a classic underdog film. With some great performances, and an effective story that is entertaining from start to finish, Rocky II is a must see for Rocky fans everywhere. Though at times, you see it has a few imperfections, this is the best sequel of the series and it delivers everything that you enjoyed from the first film. This is a brilliant film with a great cast and directing. Although predictable, there's still plenty to enjoy here if loved the first. As a whole, this is a well crafted sequel, and is among the best in the franchise. Sylvester Stallone's direction is solid and he is able to craft a terrific story that is both entertaining and inspiring.
    Alex r Super Reviewer

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