Rocky Balboa (2006) Review

Rocky Balboa has been long retired and trying to cope without his wife Adrian who had passed away, while balancing a restaurant and his strained relationship with his son Robert. A virtual boxing match which sees Rocky defeat current champion Mason Dixon, leads to a challenge and a return to the ring for the Italian Stallion.

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This is certainly a very emotional journey as we see our hero Rocky attempting to deal with the loss of his wife and his son Robert not wanting to spend any time with him. Having an Italian restaurant where people like to hear his stories, then Paulie still being around him as well. He seems content with everything but does visit the graveyard for Adrian everyday to talk to her.

By chance he would then meet Marie again, who he walked home as a teenager. Going on to help not only her but her son Steps, this is something that really does show how much of a good heart Rocky has and one of the main reasons he is one of my all time favourite film characters. We are given plenty more lovely moments and I have to give Stallone so much credit for that.

The virtual fight which uses a computer game puts Rocky up against current champion Mason Dixon, a fighter who is accused of having no real heart and that he has always taken the easy fights on his way to the top. That is something that certainly riles him up and an idea is born for an exhibition match. Something Rocky feels he needs to get involved with as well, having not got rid of his monsters. Even though he is initially rejected for the boxing licence a little speech sees them change their minds.

The boxing scenes are a little bit disappointing but given the storylines wrapped around it and the relationship with Rocky and Robert being built back up again that is something that I certainly enjoy with this film. Everything is finished off nicely and I forgot how much of a joy to watch I find it. I saw this on cinema release back in 2006 and pleased I got to see it again on the big screen re-release, although I have watched it a few times over the years.

The creation of Rocky is all done to Stallone and his performance in this is as good as ever for the incredible character. He certainly managed to give himself some truly emotional scenes but also one of the best speeches you will hear about life, very honest about life as it ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. That is my favourite moment in the film as it is totally real and the moment that eventually gets through to Robert.

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