Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rocky VI

I've been hearing a lot of crap about Rocky VI, which is coming out today.

"That movie's gonna SUCK!"

"That shit is so unrealistic!"

"He's too old man!"

"I hear he fights cancer in this one." (admittedly, I think this one is funny.)

Well, let me tell you all that you can fuck off. This movie is going to be incredible for a couple of reasons.

First of all, to the people who say it's "so unrealistic" that they don't want to bother seeing it...have you motherfuckers seen any movies in the last twenty years? Any James Bond or Vin Diesel film? Did you like Predator? Or Terminator? Or, for the nerd constituent out there, The Lord of the Rings? You're telling me that movies about either elves and dwarves or aliens that hunt humans and use their spinal cords as trophies are more realistic than a boxer not knowing when to quit?

Would Rocky be too old to fight professionally? Yes. But it's a fucking movie, and a movie that is no more realistic than the whole premise of the Rocky series in the first place- the world champion giving a no-name club fighter a shot at the title simply because he's called the "Italian Stallion", and America happened to be discovered by an Italian; that was a stretch in the first place. This is no worse.

As far as age goes, George Foreman won the title back at age 45, and Jack Dempsey fought on Okinawa at the age of 49 with a group of men that he trained himself. The fact is, like it's said in the movie, "Fighters fight." They can't turn it off, and they can't stop it. This fictional character of Rocky might be closer to the truth than some like to admit, maybe because they aren't fighters themselves and would never consider such a dangerous venture.

Sly looks better at 60 then 95% of America has ever looked in their lifetimes, including you who is sitting at their now computer reading this. What kind of shape will you be in at 60? Hell, what kind of shape are you in now? How many of you can do 25 pushups and 10 pullups in the same day? There's the old saying about people in glass houses throwing rocks, and I think more fat Americans need to remember this before they bash Stallone for making action movies at 60.

On a different, more philosophical note, America really could use a Rocky movie again. A History professor I once had told me a story about when he saw the first movie in the theater back in 1976.

"America was in bad shape. The whole Vietnam thing, the Watergate Scandal, Nixon...the 70's were a burned out time. Things were bad. America wasn't the good guy anymore, or the underdog. When I saw Rocky for the first time, the crowd was stunned. It gave America back a sense of itself, a sense that had been missing since Vietnam, and people couldn't believe it. It was still the only movie I've ever seen that, at the end, the entire theater stood up, and began clapping."

This is the classic America story of a kid from the streets clawing from the slums of a beaten, blown out city and becoming the champion. This is what your country, my country, is about. This is your American dream. Maybe somewhere along the line you've all forgotten what it's like to not be on top, to have brawl and fight and hope that somewhere along the line you catch a good break. Maybe you never were fighters.

But don't fuck with the hopes of us who are, and who still have a long way to go. Give us our damn movie.

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