Rocky Balboa


Rocky Balboa

Critics Consensus

Implausible but entertaining and poignant, Rocky Balboa finds the champ in fighting form for the first time in years.



Total Count: 180


Audience Score

User Ratings: 515,226
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Movie Info

The greatest underdog story of our time is back for one final round of the Academy Award-winning Rocky franchise. Former heavyweight champion Rocky Balboa steps out of retirement and back into the ring, putting himself against a new rival in a dramatically different era. After a virtual boxing match declares Rocky Balboa the victor over current champion Mason 'The Line' Dixon, the legendary fighter's passion and spirit are reignited. But when his desire to fight in small, regional competitions is trumped by promoters calling for a rematch of the cyber-fight, Balboa must weigh the mental and physical risks of a high profile exhibition match against his need to be in the ring.


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Critic Reviews for Rocky Balboa

All Critics (180) | Top Critics (45) | Fresh (138) | Rotten (42)

  • I know, I know, you're thinking, oh please, not Rocky again. I was thinking that too.

    Oct 18, 2008 | Full Review…

    Bob Mondello
    Top Critic
  • Stallone wanted this movie to restore dignity to his greatest character. He succeeds, better then anyone might have expected.

    Feb 23, 2007 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…
  • The ol' lug can't be blamed for wanting one last victory lap, but if you've got nothing to offer except benign nostalgia, just let the gloves stay on the glory-days shelf.

    Feb 3, 2007 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…

    David Fear

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • The film meanders along this path for a long, slow while, a primitive soap opera dressed up as street poetry.

    Jan 27, 2007 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Paul Arendt
    Top Critic
  • The unfortunate effect is that of an invisible angel of death hooking Rocky's mouth with a fishing line and implacably reeling him in.

    Jan 20, 2007 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…
  • Even goodwill can't make this look like anything more than a glorified TV special. Surely it's time for the audience to throw in the towel?

    Jan 16, 2007 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Rocky Balboa

  • Oct 16, 2016
    It wins largely due to nostalgia, but Rocky Balboa delivers almost the same amount of heart that the first film is known for, along with another amiable performance from Stallone.
    Matthew Samuel M Super Reviewer
  • Mar 14, 2016
    Restoring the character's Can-Do underdog qualities, this Rocky-solid redemption tale truly deserves a look from anyone who dropped out of the franchise after the low blow known as Rocky V. Audiences have every reason to want to boo this latter-day follow-up without even watching the fight--let alone sitting ringside. After all, the fourth Rocky sequel denigrated the series and our hero retired 20 years ago. If viewers watch blow for blow, however, they're truly in for one of the better Rocky films. Even though the film revisits a lot of the franchise's past and the main event proves far-fetched, this heart-warming sequel nonetheless ratchets up the entertainment value for an entire 12 rounds. In this PG-rated sports drama, widower Rocky Balboa (Stallone) comes out of retirement and dons his gloves for his final fight, which pits him against the reigning heavyweight champ Mason 'The Line' Dixon (Antonio Tarver). Somebody Up There Likes Me is a film about and expression attributed to boxing champ Rocky Marciano, but it likewise applies to another successful pugilist called Rocky, namely Balboa. With Adrian - long Rocky's anchor - out of the picture, the iconic character gets a refreshing new story arc while keeping her spirit very much alive and Stallone brings great poignancy to the part. Here, as a restaurateur happily telling old fight stories at - you guessed it -Adrian's, his next chapter feels wholly appropriate and plausible yet entirely respectful of the Balboa legacy. It's also great to see Young, so long relegated to third tier player, finally get elevated to second billing. If only his scenes with Stallone - mostly them trekking through Philadelphia revisiting long gone haunts - didn't descend into melodrama. Rocky's embattled relationship with his son teeters on the same melodramatic precipice, but it nonetheless rings true. As for the fight, in which computer analytics break down the actualities in a staged exhibition between far-over-the-hill Rocky and the current champion, it borders on hogwash. But, truth be told, it's damn entertaining hogwash. Bottom Line: Million Dollar Maybe
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 26, 2016
    Let this bizarre vainity project die already, like it did a very long time ago.
    Super Reviewer
  • Feb 22, 2013
    Stallone goes the distance in the final installment of this underdog saga. Rocky Balboa is simple, plain, boxing entertainment and drama with modern-day fight experiences that fully surpasses its past films (except 1 & 2). The film is a graceful presentation of past, present and future in the realms of boxing and life and does enough to save the franchise until the final bell. 4.5/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer

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