Thursday, December 21, 2006

Rocky Balboa


So, I've been binging on Rocky movies for the last few weeks.

Before last month, I'd never seen a single Rocky picture and I kept seeing the trailer for Rocky Balboa and thinking to myself, "Jesus, that looks like it's going to be pretty bad, but something I can't define makes me want to go see it as soon as I can."

So, I rented the first Rocky picture and was pleasantly surprised. I thought it was really simple, but very good. Was it better than it's other Best Picture contenders? No. I mean, it beat out Network, All the Presidents Men and Taxi Driver. There's no way Rocky was a better movie than those. More popular perhaps, but not better. (Read my other rants about Network here and here.)

And watching the rest of the Rocky films back to back to back really places into perspective how much better the first picture is than all the others. I have to say though, I really, really, liked Rocky III. It was really fun to watch. Rocky IV was completely terrible, but I enjoyed the hell out of watching it, too. I mean, come on, what's with that God-damn robot? And I couldn't even stay awake for all of Rocky V.

But I went last night, opening day, to see the latest in the franchise, Rocky Balboa. As far as Rocky movies go, this film was a masterpiece. Yeah, yeah, it's all the same as the others. The formula for the movies has always been the same:

1) Rocky wants to fight but either can't or shouldn't. In this case, he's too old.

2) An opportunity is put in front of him by some promoters (basically the same thing Apollo Creed did in the first film) to fight even though he shouldn't have a shot

3) A training montage set to Bill Conti music

4) An edge-of-your seat fight, wondering always who's going to win.

It's a by-the-numbers Rocky, but it works. I was like a kid watching that movie.

Anyhow, my advice is to go see it, if nothing else because it's a nostaligic piece of film history. And you'll enjoy the hell out of it. And you've all seen Rocky IV and V and it's waaaay better than those two. Also, if this movie doesn't give you a new respect for Stallone, then go and read his Q & A sessions over at Ain't It Cool News. It's a fascinating read.

23 comments:

Duckie Butters said...

Bryan,

I was thinking I was going to get into the Good Shepherd the other day but it was sold out so I figured since you said that "Rocky Balboa" was good, that I would give it a try.

Good grief! That was one of the biggest turds that I have ever seen in my life. I felt like I was watching some pathetic straight to video rocky flick.

without spending too much time on this, here are my complaints:

every character in the whole film felt like a 2-D prop, His son, his brother in law, the lady from the bar, her son, the black dude rocky fights, and Rocky himself.

You said that you felt like a kid watching Rocky Balboa. Well I did too, but not in a good way. I felt like Sly was spoon feeding us all of these analogies of old buildings and old dogs and it was just too forced.

What the hell was Rocky doing going to the pound to pick up a new puppy with a black dude in his twenties? It seems like a story line for a Curious George book. Can't you just see Curious George going to the pound with the Man with the Yellow Hat to pick out a dog?

Was it just me or did act one take up the first 75% of the film? It felt like there was hardly a second act at all.

I would rathr shoot myself in the foot than ever have to sit through this turkey again.

Your pal,

Duckie

Bryan said...

I didn't say it was good. I said I enjoyed all the other Rocky films and this was the same formula. So I enjoyed it.

And c'mon, you have to give me that it's waaaaay better than Rocky IV and V.

What I was trying to get across was that this was a guilty pleasure movie.

So sue me, Duckie.

And I saw Good Shepherd. I thought it was really well-made and the acting was good, it's a good film, but the jury is still out on whether or not I liked it.

Duckie Butters said...

I never saw Rocky IV or V. But i'll bet they are at least good for some laughter in a Karate kid II or III sort of way. I laughed my butt off in both of those movies because Ralph Machio was so crappy. I remember howling with laughter in all of the attempts at drama and sappy story lines. I think I was the only one laughing in those parts to the annoyance of all of the other audience members. It was fantastic!

With Rocky Balboa, it was real bad but not in a good sort of way. The whole experience was depressing as hell.

You owe me a good recommendation. (No Sci-fi, no sports flicks, and no superhero crap.!)

your pal,

Duckie

PS

Oh yeah, I also laughed my butt off when I saw Hot Tub the Movie. That was down right HILARIOUS!

Steven Greenstreet said...

Duckie, if you "laughed your butt off" watching me in hot tub, then does that mean you're not fat any more?

davina said...

Steven,

They say that a good sense of humor is a sign of intelligence. If the opposite is also true then you must be a complete moron because your humor is pathetic at best. Fat jokes are about as funny as your run of the mill knock knock jokes. Good goin' dumb ass!

Steven Greenstreet said...

Davina, I checked out your Myspace profile. And it looks like you might have some special reason for being mad at fat jokes. Sorry if I hit a nerve.

P.S. Maybe you should sing us one of your musical masterpieces. Cuz you know what they say: It ain't over til the...

Bryan said...

Even I think that was in poor taste.

I was going to ask Davina why she seemed to hate us so much and you went ahead and gave her a real reason to.

Man....

Steven Greenstreet said...

Yeah, defend the bitch who's calling us out as liars, you pussy.

This chick comes on to our blog and starts blabbing on and on and on about how she's all mad because I wrote something that I supposedly copied.

And then, she hasn't been able to send us a clear link to what we've copied and "stolen".

She's just a cow with a cup full of sand her in vagina. And it's chaffing her and making her all pissed and fidgety and the next thing you know, Bryan and Steve are suddenly plagiarists.

And I say that with the utmost dignity and respect.

P.S. Bryan, if you want to kick my ass, I'm sitting right behind you at work.

Bryan said...

I don't believe in ass kicking. Unless, of course, it's coupled with some name taking.

Bryan said...

Also, what the fuck does any of this have to do with that glorious mountain of a man, Rocky Balboa?

And, Davina, in defense of Steve, Duckie and he have been going back and forth on the hot tub video for a while now. I find it's best to leave them to it without any outside interference.

davina said...

Steven,

You seem to have some major female issues and anger issues as well. Who hurt you Steven? Was it your mom? Or was it a girl you fell for who didn't fall for your lame ass?

Bryan,

I can't imagine that that was the first time that Steven has manifested his anger towards women. That boy needs some help!

Just so we are are clear here:

Steven Greenstreet DID NOT come up with the idea of making a film about obesity, it was someone else's idea.

Steven made minute by minute notes of Super Size Me, to make sure that he "didn't" copy Morgan Spurlock.

Steven now has a history of accusing both men and women of being fat in a public setting when his lame uncreative ass can't think of a clever response to those who ask tough questions.

Am I the only one who sees the irony here? Running around accusing people of being fat while you making a film about obesity is the most ridiculous thing that I have ever heard. How are people going to take you serious?

Steven has a major anger problem.

And Steven is aggressive towards women in a sexually degrading manner.

Bryan,

I'm not sure what your point was about Steven and a "hot tub video". What is the significance of that?

Davina

Bryan said...

There was some video of Steve being Hollywood in a hot tub on his college speaking tour that was circulating the internet for a while and Duckie and Steve playfully go round and round about it.

And being hired to direct a project with a set theme and topic isn't the same as stealing an idea.

Also, I made the minute by minute notes.

And, although accused repeatedly in the past of being a misogynist, that's only his This Divided State blog persona. He's not such a bad guy in person.

Steven Greenstreet said...

Davina,

Keep checking back in case someone writes another comment.

Then be ready to write another response that's stupid and baseless.

Check every 30 minutes or so. Which I know you're doing anyways.

ROCKY!

STEVEN

Duckie Butters said...

Hey Steve!

Remember that one part in "Hot Tub, The Movie" when you were trying to be all Corey Haim and your phone rang once or twice and you got this real intense, pissed look on your face like (that better not be another telemarketer)?

That part was totally awesome!

What sort of preparation did you go through for that role?

Duckie

Steven Greenstreet said...

I drank a lot of Corona and banged a hooker.

STEVEN

rare earth said...

Steven,

"... and the next thing you know, Bryan and Steve are suddenly plagiarists"

???????

I don't think anybody is calling Bryan a plagiarist. Nope. Just you.

Don't try and tell me you don't check Karel Donk every 30 minutes to see what you can copy.

Steven Greenstreet said...

What the fuck is "Karel Donk"?

Bryan, can you help me out?

Do you know what this asshole is talking about?

rare earth said...

Oh please--who is Karel Donk? Like you have no idea? What a gutless fraud you are, Steven.

Be a man and own up to the fact that you at least occasionally "borrow" from Karel.

http://www.miraesoft.com/karel/2006/12/23/the-destruction-of-america-is-well-underway/

Bryan said...

I looked at that link and to be honest (and no offense to Steve here) there's waaaay too much text on that screen for Steve to read, let alone copy from.

I don't know if anyone else notices, but Steve's posts are very picture-centric.

He's more of a visualist than a verbalist.

Steven Greenstreet said...

Rare Earth,

Thanks for finally telling us who the fuck Karel Donk is.

I skimmed over his/her/its post and realized that most of it is COPIED AND PASTED from OTHER articles! 37 other articles to be exact.

The irony, of course, is way too orgasmically aweseome.

Thanks for the nice laugh. It's the first one of the day.

But, seriously, continue your undying quest to prove me wrong, fucko.

STEVEN

rare earth said...

Steven,
Exactly! Karel gathers the info, and you repackage it and pass it off as yours. Did you read his piece on Bush and Die Hard? Wait, of course you did, because you copied it and posted it on this blog. How sad that you laugh while you steal the work of others.

Steven Greenstreet said...

Rare Earth,

No, I didn't read that.

It was WAYYYYYYY too fucking long to even get past the first paragraph.

But, thanks for finally telling me who I copied off of.

I was beginning to wonder who it was that I had plagiarized. Now I know.

Thanks!

STEVEN

Anonymous said...

More like, now you know that we know.