Art works made from “Chio crisp packets”, 2020

I have always been in love with Rocky IV. The narrative of America v Russia is not completely unheard of in todays climate, re. recent politics. Two boxers in the ring, fighting for their lives. Two friends, the death of a friend and avenging the friend of the fallen boxer. Training in the colder weather, away from his family, growing a beard and that incredible photo tear away shot at the end of the montage, Bill Conti creating the soundtrack for all five films, hearts on fire and outrunning the russians in the car. All of these references will make sense to true fans. 

The evolution of character building over the films reaches a climax for Rocky Balboa’s final meaningful battle. The ammeter boxer made of steel, seemingly unbeatable, insanely strong in his own environment. The tale of the falling of Apollo due to his own arrogance, assuming he would beat the ammeter after Rocky warns that “you know, were changing Apollo, were changing into regular people. That ain’t us up there no more”, after reviewing footage of their fights in their prime. 

Russia’s control over their representation, the boxer they rely on denies their expectation once he has fallen, surprised with Rocky’s unauthadox boxing style. It is odd to watch Rocky box, because he always seems as though hes losing but he keeps going and never gives up. Despite the odds, he comes back with heart and fight and lives in the ring. It is a tale of true heart that really is on fire. 

We could see it as entertainment, sure, we could see it as trash film making ending on a freeze frame, but we can consider what it stands for and what it means. It means hard work, determination, connection between nations, fight and spirit, blood sweat and tears, passion and friendship. It is a way of saying, never give up and this feels as though it could be a candidate for the greatest film ever made.