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Rocky Fight pictures being rare Rocky succeeds as an offbeat entry by combining a Cinderella story with a rich character study of a man who boxes because he doesnt know much else Sylvester Stallone who stars in his own original screenplay and choreographed the bouts is being named for Oscar consideration Dumb but basically decent Rocky really cant hurt anyone unless provoked By a fluke he is matched with the heavyweight champion Carl Weathers in a variation on Muhammad Ali The acting is generally fine and Stallone and Burgess Meredith are superb One of the oldest plot devices in films that of the plain-looking girl who becomes a beauty also works in the case of female lead Talia Shire its something audiences will be quite willing to believe John G Avildsens direction is sharp and plays the satiric ingredients as well as the more poignant qualities to maximum effect The Irwin Winkler-Robert Chartoff production has several original songs in the score by Bill Conti The character of Rocky and the host of Italian characters some played by non-Italians will take a bit of time to accept Once past that audiences will undoubtedly be touting Sylvester Sly Stallone as a new star Technicolor prints by DeLuxe Color Philadelphia boxer Sylvester Stallone a small-timer doubles as a collector for hood Joe Spinell although he doesnt like to use violence In the ring where hes dubbed the Italian stallion the good-natured Stallone beats Pedro Lovell only after being butted intentionally Friend Burt Young a butcher tries to promote a romance between his shy sister Talia Shire who works in a pet shop and Stallone Also an animal lover Stallone talks her into a Thanksgiving date which is platonic until he kisses her passionately and she responds Heavyweight champion Carl Weathers who is as shrewd out of the ring as he is flamboyant in the squared circle selects Stallone for a Bicentennial bout Stallone trains earnestly and
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