Lists are great. They inspire discussion, create arguments, and tend to spiral off into fun new lists. When you do a list about the “BEST” of anything it goes from being fun to becoming a hotbed for arguments. There’s no such thing as a definitive list but I’ve decided to pull from my rather extensive life of film watching and put it to good use.
This is not the “film critic’s top 100” list. There’s no guarantee Citizen Kane or The Bicycle Thief will be in the top echelon or even on the list. This is the 100 movies I would put my name on as my top 100. If I died tomorrow this would represent the 100 films I find most vital, special, or ones that bonded to whatever it is that makes me me. I’m not including documentaries, though that might make for a nice supplemental list.
The first 80 will be in no particular order. The last 20 will be in very particular order. One a day, you have my word.
#32 – Rocky
Why is it here:
Note: Remember that the first 80 are in no particular order.
This movie is more than a great movie. It’s more than a success story about a filmmaker who wouldn’t take no for an answer. It’s more than an allegory for the American spirit. There is so much love in this movie. So much unbridled and cynicism free optimism. It’s just a great character study that connected so huge that people sold it short in decades later because of excessive sequels and how iconic the character of Rocky is. It’s perfect from the performances to the tone to the music to the way it capped the 70’s and began something still bearing fruit in films today. People forget how bright Stallone is. No more proof than this is necessary.
Moments to savor:
The first time we meet an American icon. The meat punch. Trying to teach girls how to behave outside the Atomic Hoagie Shop. Father Carmine approves. Meeting Rocky’s pets. Paulie: worst motivational speaker/brother ever. Apollo, all class. Mickey at his best.
Very very high.
How does anyone not love this movie? Few days match up to when I unwrapped my Rocky game for the Sega Master System back in the 80’s.