Thursday, March 12, 2009

ROCKY (1976)

The story of how a common street boxer won against undisputed heavy weight champion Apollo Creed is shown in less than 10 minutes duration on screen boxing ring clash & its only last few deadly jabs of Rocky Balboa in the final round which broke the ribs of Creed & made him an underdog winner.
Rocky is a special because it introduced a new kind of cinematic hero. Despite having horrible voice & dialogue delivery & amateur acting abilities Sylvester Stallone delivered punching characterization of Rocky Balboa- a voice of American dream which aim high & achieved. Its victory of a working class common struggling boxer against champion of the ring & this made it one of the most popular flick of all time & that is the reason why it became biggest box office success of 1976. Made with over all production cost of 1.1 million dollars, it went on to generate more than 100 million dollars.

Well, very few of us know that the original screenplay of the film was written by Stallone himself & it was inspired by a historical boxing match of 1975 which Stallone had witnessed where World heavy weight champion Muhammad Ali was challenged by a common working class boxer Chuck Wepner & he was Ali’s few challenger who knocked him down.
There are two more interesting things about ‘Rocky’-
# In the film, the fight scenes were shot in the reverse order starting with 15th round with both the opponents in heavy make up. As filming continued, the make up was slowly removed till they were at round one. The movie won an Oscar for Best Film Editing because of this technique.
# Stallone was the third actor in the history of Oscars to be nominated for Best Actor & Best Original Screenplay for the same film. The other two people who achieved this feat were Charlie Chaplin( for ‘The Great Dictator’) & Orson Welles(for ‘Citizen Kane’).

Out of its 10 nominations ‘Rocky’ won 3 Academy Awards of Best Picture, Best Director (John G. Avildson) & Best Film Editing.


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