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Rocky

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rocky.png
  • The first movie's Training Montage. Just the training montage.
    • The final shot of the montage, with Rocky leaping up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art that he previously couldn't run, and raising his arms towards the city in triumph. It's one of the most memorable shots in film history.
  • Mick calling out Rocky for his mob connections and lack of ambition. Rough, but it's definitely something Rocky needed to hear.
    Rocky: You know I've been coming in here for six years, and for six years you've been sticking it to me, I wanna know how come.
    Mick: You don't wanna know.
    Rocky: Yeah, I wanna know how come.
    Mick: You wanna know?
    Rocky: I WANNA KNOW HOW!
    Mick: Okay, I'll tell ya. You had the talent to become a good fighter! And instead of that, you became a leg-breaker, for some cheap loan shark!
    Rocky: (sheepishly) It's a living...
    Mick: IT'S A WASTE OF LIFE!
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  • It's understated, but the first real training sequence in the film applies; the one most often known as the Philadelphia Morning scene. No intense heart driving music, no shouting, just Rocky getting up before the sunrise for a long run towards the Philadelphia Museum of Art in his current physical condition. The awesome is in the execution, for perfectly illustrating what it really means to want to drive oneself to improvement, that yes, having trainers and friends all there to help is great but before any of that you've got to have it in you to do it by yourself with no other motivation than your own. The somber music used further drives home how much Rocky will need to do and commit himself to see his goal through. This scene also help to further set up the more famous training montage to hit even harder later as he is able to practically fly up the steps as opposed to originally just barely making the run in one piece.
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  • Adrian's Shut Up, Hannibal! speech against Paulie's It's All About Me speech.
    Paulie: YOU OWE ME!!!
    Adrian: WHAT DO I OWE YOU!!?
    Paulie: You're supposed to be good to me!!
    Adrian: WHAT DO I OWE YOU PAULIE!!!? WHAT DO I OWE YOU!? I COOK FOR YOU, I CLEAN FOR YOU, I PICK UP YOUR DIRTY CLOTHES!!!! I TAKE CARE OF YOU GOOD PAULIE I OWE YOU NOTHING!!!! AND YOU MAKE ME FEEL LIKE A LOSER!!! I'M!!! NOT!!! A LOSER!!!
  • Rocky's resolve. Instead of swearing he'd win like a typical hero, he instead confesses to Adrian in self-aware, Classical Antihero fashion that he wants to go the distance with the living embodiment of Muhammad Ali in the Rocky Universe, even though he knows he's not in his league.
    Rocky: I can't beat him. But it really don't matter if I lose this fight. It really don't matter if this guy opens my head either. Cause all I wanna do is go the distance. Nobody's ever gone the distance with Creed, and if I can go that distance, and that bell rings and I'm still standing - I'm gonna know for the first time in my life, that I weren't just another bum from the neighborhood.
  • And of course the fight at the end of the first film, where Rocky achieves his real goal of going a full fifteen rounds against Apollo, even though Apollo did win since the title holder pretty much successfully defends if they avoid being KOed, which is also known as the champion's advantage. Rocky would have had to utterly dominate the fight to win without being KOed and that would have detracted from the awesome.
    • It was so awesome, in Rocky II, a handful of people, including Mickey, are convinced that Rocky was the real winner of the fight.
  • The 14th Round. The crescendo of the music, Bill Conti's Going the Distance, swells not when Rocky knocked down Apollo but when he himself got knocked down in the 14th round. Rocky's defining moment wasn't taking Apollo down but being able to take the hits and still keep moving forward. He literally went the distance. Mickey was telling him to stay down, but he wouldn't.
    • Many emotions were swirling at that point that serves as the perfect lead up to the final round. Rocky's desperation to get up. Adrian coming to the back of the arena to watch the fight with a look of despair. Apollo's disbelief in seeing Balboa beat the count. Practically everyone present, even Rocky's own corner, expected him to stay down but he refused to. The absolute peak of the music comes when Creed goes after Rocky before the Italian Stallion slips the jab and hook in order to unload several devastating left hook body blows to the champ. He just won't give up. The whole sequence perfectly captures the essence of the unbreakable will of man.

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