Considerably less satisfying than the original ROCKY, but head and shoulders above the later installments, ROCKY II picks up the saga of "the Italian Stallion" during the last two rounds of his gutsy loss to world champ Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers). After the bout, Rocky (Sylvester
Stallone) and Adrian (Talia Shire), his no-longer-mousy sweetheart, marry and use his fight purse to buy a car and condo. Soon Rocky learns that if he enters the ring again he runs the risk of being blinded in the eye he injured fighting Apollo. He does his best to provide for Adrian but is laid
off by the slaughterhouse where he works with his brother-in-law, Paulie (Burt Young). Worried about the future--which is about to include a new baby--Rocky accepts a rematch with Apollo, who is anxious to prove Rocky's showing in their first bout was a fluke.
All the endearing characters from Part One are back, as is Bill Conti's familiar music--indeed, the sequel is a virtual remake of the original film. This time Stallone both wrote and directed the film, and though his handling of the actors and camera is less assured than John Avildsen's in ROCKY,
he keeps things moving at a good pace and delivers another charming performance himself. leave a comment