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Movie Review: Rocky II

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rocky-ii-560 So last night and today I am privy to the wonderful world that is the Rocky series playing on TV. In particular is the movie Rocky II which I am surprised to admit one of my favorites in the whole Rocky genre. Now that I have said that I am sure to receive a slew of emails telling me that it sucked or wasn’t as good as the original or that their favorite is Rocky Balboa, but that is their opinion and this is mine. I ask that no shit kicking contest begin because I frankly don’t care which one you liked more. This is my blog and I will like what I like.

Rocky2b_1280x720 In Rocky II we see the protagonist Rocky Balboa in the hospital after fighting Apollo Creed and losing. They both have to undergo treatment for busted body parts and rehabilitation after such a grueling battle. Apollo is getting a lot of flak during the movie about how he might have one on a technicality because there was no clear victory on either side, prompting the sequel. Apollo pushes Rocky to fight again, calls him a lot of names and essentially forces the fight. Rocky, who claimed he was retired, got married, got Adrienne pregnant and has been having trouble getting a job (later he works as a janitor in the boxing gym..and is the brunt of insults). His fame and possibility of fortunes dry up quickly when the companies that want him as a spokesperson realize he is a bumbling idiot who can not read nor speak well enough for commercial endorsements. This prompts Rocky to start a program (slowly) of raising his literacy. Somewhere during the movie Adrienne falls into a coma after giving birth to his first kid and the champ trains, then fights and wins against Apollo in the rematch. Pauly is the same SOB that just flops around the whole movie. Mickey is awesome and his phrases make the film. Rocky’s character has become more developed and you see that he is the polite but stupid boxer who really just likes to be happy and tries to be charming in his own hood rat manner.

Rocky.Mickey Why do I like this movie? Well for one thing, it shows the dirtier side of a boxer’s life. Rocky, although being a strong and now famous local celebrity, can not use any of it to raise himself up and must look to the traditional means of becoming admired: Literacy and posture. He realizes he is no longer in the ghetto and can not go back to collecting monies for a character (Tony) who is most likely a bookie or mobster from South Philly. He is becoming a man and wants to give his wife the good things in life and to give his kid a better life then he had. The fight and why he fights is explained in the film as beautifully as I have ever heard the division of the sexes and on what a man or manhood is (and now : used to be): “Adrian, I never asked you to stop being a woman. Please, please, don’t ask me to stop being a man. Please.” Truly an inspiring line of what men and women ought to be in the world and throughout history: warriors and mothers. Rocky’s line reminded me of the Spartan ideal of what a wife would say to her husband before battle: Return with your shield, or on it.” No other line so clearly defines what men and women do best genetically. Men are the hunters and women the mothers/gatherers. We fight, that is what we do best. To not nurture that or to avoid that part of our genetics is to spell disaster in our society and will unleash a large amount of pent up frustration with the world around us. We need to fight or to express this battle urge, otherwise we become women and then disillusioned with ourselves.

rocky-running Clearly Mickey is also an inspiration to behold in his movie. He takes the role of a demigod, molding and forming the soon to be champ. Giving him no leeway nor middle ground because in the ring there is no try: it is win or lose. He is an original and more then likely he is the inspiration for Kill Bill’s Pai Mei. I offer you a few of his quotes as proof that he is the warrior god and through him, a winner is born: “You’re gonna eat lightnin’; you’re gonna crap thunder”; “First, because I said so. And second, is because chicken-chasing is how we used to train back in the old days. If you can catch this thing, you can catch greased lighting.” ; “Left handed fighters, they’re the worst. They try to come in there with that big left. Right’s no damn good. They ought to outlaw southpaws!” Take it from a fellow southpaw, this is very insulting but it foreshadows Mickey’s desire and eventual success in training Rocky to be a ambidextrous fighter and eventually the best fighter on earth who doesn’t quit. Truly an inspiration for anyone who wants to be a coach or find one.

Men need to be men and not be ashamed of it, women need to be women and not try to change men. And we need to love each other because of this, not in spite of this.

All in all the best motto that can be gleamed from this movie is : “Do what you love and is in your nature to do, life will follow”


Written by Josecito

February 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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