ROCKY

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Overall Impression – How can you not root for this underdog?

THE FOUR QUESTIONS

Who’s your main character? – Rocky Balboa.

What’s he trying to accomplish? – Professional: beat Apollo Creed in the ring. Personal: win Adrian’s heart. Private: prove that a nobody can become a champion.

Who’s trying to stop him? – Mostly it’s Rocky himself, occasionally it’s his difficult friend Paulie, and various other characters in Rocky’s life keep him from realizing his goals.

What happens if he fails? – This is Rocky’s one and only shot.  If he doesn’t take it, he’ll never amount to anything… both professionally and in his personal life.

THE FOUR ARCHETYPES

Orphan – Rocky’s bravado is just a shell, and nobody knows him for who he really is. He’s actually lonely, and doesn’t like the way his life has turned out.

Wanderer – When Rocky gets a life changing opportunity to fight boxing champion Apollo Creed, he must decide whether or not to take the shot, and if so… how to go about it.  However, the thrust of the movie lies with Rocky negotiating how to ask out the incredibly shy Adrian, and eventually Rocky gets help from his friend Paulie, who’s also Adrian’s abusive brother.

Warrior – Rocky deals with his newfound fame and starts his training in earnest, getting support from both Paulie and his boxing coach, Mickey.  He also works on his relationship with Adrian, and she becomes a warrior herself by finally coming out of her shell and standing up to Paulie.

Martyr – Rocky’s willing to be beaten to a pulp before the entire world to achieve his dream.

AND, IN THE END…

Ah Rocky – now there’s a character you want to WIN!

He’s sympathetic in all the right ways: a streetwise tough guy who keeps pet turtles; a thug who doesn’t like hurting people; a rough-edged boxer who’s a real thinker.

In other words, there’s way more to Rocky than what you gather at first glance, and that’s what the movie’s about for me – that fact some people are more than they appear.

This theme is inspiring, genuine, and most important, it resonates.  ROCKY cleverly tapped into something that most – if not all – people can identify with, which is just one of the reasons it achieved such success.

What I like most about ROCKY is that the passion behind it rings true.  Sylvester Stallone was in dire straights when he wrote the screenplay, which, amazingly, took him about 3 days.  He created the part of Rocky with himself in mind, and eventually won Best Picture at the Academy awards.

ROCKY, like the mind behind it, argues that with passion and determination, success is possible.   How can you not like that?

– Dan Pilditch

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