Rocky review

Film description

In a nutshell:

The humble beginning of the most iconic boxer in movies.


Rocky: ‘ADRIAN!’

Rocky: ‘I was nobody. But that don't matter either, you know? 'Cause I was thinkin', it really don't matter if I lose this fight. It really don't matter if this guy opens my head, either. 'Cause all I wanna do is go the distance. Nobody's ever gone the distance with Creed, and if I can go that distance, you see, and that bell rings and I'm still standin', I'm gonna know for the first time in my life, see, that I weren't just another bum from the neighborhood.’

Apollo Creed: ‘Apollo Creed vs. the Italian Stallion. Sounds like a damn monster movie.’


On the streets of Philadelphia in 1975, Rocky Balboa, a down and out boxer, is working as a collector for a loan shark to make ends meet. His life seems to be stuck in an insurmountable rut, until a moment of extreme good fortune.

Apollo Creed, the defending heavyweight boxing champion, is in needs an opponent after the intended competitor is injured. The champ decides to give a local untested talent a shot at glory, and picks Rocky thanks to his snappy nickname, the ‘Italian Stallion’.

Overnight, the streetwise chancer’s world changes, as he get the chance to prove to everyone that he can go the distance, embodying the American Dream with his good-natured charm and powerful right hook.

Better on Blu-ray:

It’s the fight scenes that really hit home here. After grappling with the emotional build-up, you’re thrown into the ring in crystal-clear clarity, and the booming body blows echoing around you via the impressive sound transfer.

And Rocky’s signature sprint up the steps of the Philidelphia Art Museum looks superb in hi-def, as does the ever-inpiring theme. Spine-tingling. A grey tracksuit never looked so good...

Blu-ray Extras:

This seven-disc boxset hauls in all the great extras from the earlier DVD collection. Well, almost. Where’s the original Rocky audio commentary? Oh well. What is here is excellent.

Just when you think the one hour-and-15-minute Making Of covers everything, there are interviews about the make-up, score, art direction and cinematography (great footage of Garrett Brown testing out his revolutionary SteadiCam rig by filming his girlfriend running up and down the Philly Art Museum steps long before Stallone did), plus Sly appearing on a TV talkshow in 1976 wearing a magnificent salmon-coloured suit and floral shirt combo.

•    All New Trivia Game, 'Feeling Strong Now' exclusive to Blu-ray
•    Interactive Navigation Function enabling consumer to navigate thru the 3 ½ hours of Bonus Materials
•    Bonus Materials include:
•    'Making of' Documentary
•    Featurettes:
•    Steadicam: Then and Now With Garrett Brown
•    The Ring of Truth
•    Behind the Scenes with John Avildsen
•    Three Rounds With Legendary Trainer Lou Douva
•    Video Commentary with Sylvester Stallone
•    And more!

Click here to buy Rocky: The Complete Saga on – it’s better on Blu-ray!

Release Dates

UK Cinema release
June 16th 2011
UK DVD release
January 15th 2007
UK DVD release
February 1st 2000
UK Blu-ray release
August 13th 2009

Rocky features