It’s been 40 years since Rocky Balboa showed us how winning is done
Forty years ago on this day we first met Sylvester Stallone’s lovable south Philadelphia boxer – who launched both the actor and the town to international stardom.
Written by Stallone in three days, fans fell hard for the ballad of Rocky Balboa.
Roger Ebert credits Stallone for having a vision of Rocky and hell bent to be the one to play it. How he paddled around Hollywood for years before he could sell it.
“There’s that exhilarating moment when Stallone, in training, runs up the steps of Philadelphia’s art museum, leaps into the air, shakes his fist at the city, and you know he’s sending a message to the whole movie industry.” he said.
What the movie lacked in beauty, it made up for in heart, something that resonated with audiences worldwide. The film was the highest-grossing of the year, earning $117 million at the North American box office and another $107 million overseas. (I know right!!)
— MGM Studios (@MGM_Studios) November 21, 2016
It won 3 academy awards
— Hyperion (@gfmete) November 22, 2016
These include best picture, best director (John G Avildsen) and best editing. In total, it received 20 nominations over 9 categories – with Sylvester nominated for both his acting and screenplay
— Blake Anderson (@Banderson__41) November 22, 2016
The character that kept on giving, Rocky was reborn yet again last year in creed – the story of his mate Apollo’s son, Adonis Creed. It isn’t a look for the aging (and dying) Balboa but it is a soothingly old-fashioned and bracingly up-to-date.
Let me leave you with his best dialogue yet!
“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place, and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! Now, if you know what you’re worth, then go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody. Cowards do that and that ain’t you. You’re better than that!”