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After a virtual boxing match declares Rocky Balboa the victor over current champion Mason "The Line" Dixon, the legendary fighter's passion and spirit are reignited. But when his desire to fight in small, regional competitions is trumped by promoters calling for a rematch of the cyber-fight, Balboa must weigh the mental and physical risks of a high profile exhibition match against his need to be in the ring.
Drama - Although there is considerably less boxing action in this than the
previous five installments, this is an enjoyable nostalgia trip for
fans of the Rocky series, and despite less fight action, the
male audience is clearly the target audience though it should have
fairly wide appeal. Some series fans may be disappointed by the
absence of longtime co-star Talia Shire, however.
Berardinelli, Internet CriticFull Review Good ...Rocky Balboa, the seeming afterthought that brings the saga to a fitting conclusion. These two features are solid bookends around a mess of a series that started going wrong when Rocky beat Apollo Creed in a re-match and got worse from there.
Roger EbertFull Review Very Good 'Rocky Balboa' is not the embarrassment many expected it to be. It's actually the best 'Rocky' movie since the original -- a fitting and triumphant final chapter for one of the most iconic characters in the history of motion pictures.
USA TodayFull Review Above Average Stallone has written and directed this installment with some of the perspective of a man who has weathered his own ups and downs. That makes Rocky Balboa a better movie than you might expect.
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
OPINION OVERVIEW The following is the original "What's Worth
Watching" write-up for this movie.
Based on a theater exit polling of 100 moviegoers: The Rocky series is certainly ending its run on top! These are great opinions. Teen and twentysomethings, both male and female, loved "Rocky Balboa." Adult opinions are a bit lower but still very good. The adult "Fantastic" opinions are a little sparse and there are a fair number of "Good" opinions, which is a bit low. What this tells me is that most moviegoers will enjoy "Rocky Balboa" very much, but it's not likely to become one of your favorites.
Thirty years ago he was a man with no future, working for a small time loan shark on the South Side of Philadelphia. When blind luck landed him the chance to enter the ring against reigning champ Apollo Creed, it was the million-to-one-shot of a lifetime. And all he wanted was to go the distance. His courage and perseverance, both in life and in the ring, gave hope to millions.
Now, glory has come and gone and Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone), the one-time Italian Stallion, spends his evenings telling old stories to the patrons of his restaurant, Adrian's, named after his late wife, whom he quietly mourns. His son (Milo Ventimiglia) doesn't want to spend time with him; he's too busy trying to live his own life. Time and knocks have humbled Rocky, deformed his fists, slouched his shoulders and taken away all he had except his old stories, but in his heart he's still the same man.
In his heart, he's still a fighter.
Mason "The Line" Dixon is the reigning heavyweight champion distinguished only by the ease with which he took the title. Since he has never had to prove himself, never faced a truly equal opponent, he is considered by fans to be all skill and no heart, with no real future in the sport…
Until a computer simulation matches him against Rocky Balboa in his prime. Who really would win if the two were evenly matched - Dixon's skillful jabs and footwork versus Rocky's passion and blunt force trauma? Dixon's manager has an idea how to revitalize his client's career and suddenly, heavyweight boxing captures the public's imagination again.
It seems like a lark, a joke even. But to Rocky, nearly twice the age of his opponent, the prospect of a fight with Dixon is the second chance he never thought he'd get - a billion-to-one shot to prove to himself and to those he loves that while the body changes, the heart only grows stronger.