Saturday, February 03, 2007

Rocky Balboa review!

Went to see Rocky Balboa at the cinema today. Really wasn't sure what to expect as there have been lots of reviews saying it was great and others saying it was ridiculous. I have to agree with both actually. Firstly the ridiculous part. A very aged Rocky, almost twice the age of his opponent, managing to get back in shape enough for one last fight. Very far fetched and a little hard to accept but if you can get past that then the other parts of the film have much to say.

Rocky has lost his wife and is living in the past with his memories of her. He has lost his way somewhat, has little contact with his son and doesn't seem to have a purpose any more. Then along comes the computer generated match pitching Rocky against the current Champ and saying 'The Italian Stallion' would win, much to the annoyance of the current Champion. So manipulative promoters put a match together after persuading Rocky to fight him, blah blah etc... you know the drill.

However what I liked about this film was its 'deeper' message. Rocky has always been about heart and attitude more than the actual fighting I think. Always the underdog, it is his determination, courage and heart that sees him through. Even when life has taken everything away he still carries on fighting and 'moving forward' as he would say. He goes with his convictions! I know a lot of what seems to drive the character is pride and a desperate desire to prove himself to the world, a bit like Stallone himself. This is not really something to aspire to be like. But Rocky does have this power to get you rooting for him. He is the everyman on the street, flawed, but is kind, loving, loyal and generous and almost childlike sometimes.

The cynical, hard nosed person will see little in this film of value. But I found it strangely emotional and touching. Open your heart a little and find some hope in the message of the film. Life can be really tough but don't let it stop you from going after any noble heart felt dreams and passions and don't let the world and others dictate who you are.

As a Christian I am finding more and more that God uses us when we pursue our God given passion and talents with a desire to use them for Him. Films like Rocky remind me about and excite my deep heart felt desire to not sit on my backside and watch life go by weighed down by the mundane things and historical baggage but to try and come alive, make a difference and be who God created me to be.

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