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4.8 out of 5 stars261
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 1 September 2010
I bought this box set impulsively whilst shopping for other dvds. I had always found the original 'Rocky' to be an inspiring film but I couldn't recall the quality of the other films and assumed that like most film franchises (Robocop for example), it would start off brilliantly and then rapidly decline in quality with every subsequent film.

Having watched all Rocky films back-to-back one weekend, the consistency in the quality of the films is pretty strong. I enjoyed Rocky 1 and 2 with the fights with Apollo Creed, Rocky 3 with Mr T and Rocky 4 with Ivan, the russian. Rocky 5 was the only film I found to be a bit on the poor side but it wasn't a bad film. 'Rocky Balboa', the most recent film, is probably the one I found the most inspiring.

As someone who does alot of physical training, it's really motivational watching the scenes where Rocky is in training, especially with the Rocky soundtrack which is just unforgettable. It's a great box set and at a respectable price too.
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on 4 September 2009
Note that Rocky (1976) DVD has the old disc transfer so the image and audio quality on this disc is not that good. They should have put the new Rocky disc, anyway the audio/image quality on rest of the discs (I guess they are taken from the "rocky anthology box set") are really good, rocky 2-3-4-5-6 has DTS sounds. Rocky Balboa dvd is the only disc that has some extra features.

Technical Information of this box set:


Audio: English 5.1, German, Spanish mono
Subtitles: English, Danish, Dutch, English HoH, Finnish, German, German HoH, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish and Swedish
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Rocky II
Audio: English DTS 5.1, English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, Hindi
Aspect Ratio:1.85:1
Rocky III

Audio: English DTS 5.1, English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, Hindi
Aspect Ratio:1.85:1
Rocky IV

Audio: English DTS 5.1, English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, Hindi
Aspect Ratio:1.85:1
Rocky V

Audio: English DTS 5.1, English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, Hindi
Aspect Ratio:1.85:1
Rocky Balboa

Audio: English DTS 5.1, English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English HoH
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

Audio Commentary by Actor/Director Sylvester Stallone
Deleted Scenes & Alternate Ending
Boxing's Bloopers
Skill vs. Will - The Making of Rocky Balboa" Featurette
Reality in the Ring: Filming Rocky's Final Fight" Featurette
Theatrical Trailer
Trailer for Rocky
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on 3 June 2009
Probably a very used word for the Rocky series, but it really is. The first film is my favourite film of all time (so far!). The characters, plot and emotion portrayed by Stallone make it something no film would be able to match today; it isn't about making millions in the box office or billion dollar marketing, the entire series feels like it's all Stallone's work, and whatever budget restraints were placed on the films, they still stand testament as being one of the most sucessful series' of all time.

The first four films are the best. The fifth and sixth (1990 and 207 respectively) were for me very different. The first four capture the zero to hero style each time, and tell a different part of Rocky's life throughout. The characters are memorable, lovable and best of all believable, and this is what makes them so brilliant. The death of Mick in the third film truly touches the viewers nerve, and there are so many moments that would have even the hardiest of people welling up somewhat.

A great collection of films, worth watching all of them, and an absolute steal at £15.00. A definite buy.
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NB: as is Amazon's wont, they've unhelpfully bundled the reviews for every edition and format together. This review refers to the DVD of The Undisputed Collection of the first six films.

`His name is Sylvester Stallone, but you will always remember him as Rocky,' prophetically intoned the trailer for what would turn out to be seven-film series that could almost be seen as his Antoine Doinel series, following the character through the decades with a new film popping up every time you thought he'd got it out of his system

One of those real-life underdog stories that mirrored writer-star Sylvester Stallone's own rise from the bottom of the bill in b-movies to the main attraction, Rocky is still the toughest film in the series, with enough darkness and grit to its simple and rather thin story of a washed-up no-hoper who gets a shot at the title because of dumb luck to make it play like at least a semi-realistic fairy tale. For a start Rocky Balboa isn't too smart, the kind of meat and potatoes fighter who always carries his old fight clippings with him as he fills in the gaps between fights collecting bad debts for Joe Spinell's local loan shark (though he's not into the whole breaking fingers side of the job) and trying to win over Talia Shire's pathologically shy girl at the local pet store with a little help from her seedy brother Burt Young, who's all but pimping her in the hope that Rocky will get him a job in the finger breaking business. Even Burgess Meredith's trainer is far from the loyal corner man he would later become but another seedy has-been who holds Rocky is undisguised utter contempt until he realises that he's his last chance at the big time and all too convincingly humiliates himself trying to get back into his good books. There's no attempt to make Carl Weathers' champion Mohammad Ali - sorry, Apollo Creed - likeable: a motor-mouthed operator with a shrewd eye for publicity stunts that will make each new fight more lucrative than the last, he's the most credible of Rocky's opponents by a long shot. The film also neatly taps into the 1976 Bicentennial vibe, at once celebrating the can-do all-American spirit while cannily aware of how for some that's just another marketing opportunity, and John G. Avildsen's direction keeps things looking convincingly gritty and seedy in a way the latter films increasingly abandoned. It's a world away from what the series would become only a couple of films later and all the better for it.

Avildsen didn't make it to the sequel - even coming off a couple of flops, Stallone was now big enough to insist on directing as well as writing and starring - but Rocky II is easily the best of the sequels because it's as much concerned with what happens to its hero after his big shot at fame as it is with the inevitable rematch. He's still not too smart, not too smooth and quickly runs through the money he's made and out of options, the film in many ways mirroring Stallone's inability to capitalise on the success of the first film and having to face up to the fact that the only thing his public want to see him do is climb back into the ring. The softening of the characters already creeps in - Mickey's suddenly his best friend and Burt Young's positively cheerful - but there's still enough strong drama to make it almost seem a pity when he goes back into training. The big fight itself is a hit-and-miss affair, with some striking moments but altogether rather clumsily constructed and edited, as if more thought went into the individual shots than how the whole sequence would play out, but it still wins through even if more on points than by a knockout.

Hugely successful with audiences and critics alike in 1982, Rocky III is where the rot set in as Rocky becomes reinvented as a suave and somewhat more articulate multi-millionaire living the life who's lost his edge and needs to get `the eye of the tiger' back to beat Mr T's angry (well, more constantly furious) one-man wrecking crew Clubber Lang with a little help from new trainer Apollo Creed. It's lazy and formulaic stuff, wasting much of its dramatic potential by setting up possible conflicts that are resolved almost as soon as they start, the film as flabby as the champ himself as he gets caught up in all the glitz while Burgess Meredith seems to be increasingly channelling Poopdeck Pappy from the Popeye cartoons to such an extent that you almost expect him to force feed Rocky some spinach before he goes in the ring. On the plus side, if Stallone's writing has deteriorated massively his direction of the fight sequence has improved greatly, able to construct a convincing complete sequence for the first time, but from here on in the series is less about going the distance and more about beating yet another seemingly invincible opponent.

Rocky IV is even worse, the ultimate 80s kitschfest showing all the worst aspects of the decade and none of the strengths: lots of fast cutting, a score that's heavy on the synths, a lot of dry ice and a power-dressing Brigitte Nielson before she got carried away with the surgical enhancements. The script is pitiful, a handful of unconvincing scenes simply filling in the gaps between yet another music video montage set to yet another 80s power ballad. All pretence at realism is out the window - Apollo Creed dances into the ring wearing a Stars and Stripes outfit to the accompaniment of a live performance from James Brown while Dolph Lundgren's monolithic Russian killing machine who had more lines in the trailer than the finished film looks on with mildly startled disgust, and that's one of the more convincing moments - while the characters are watered down to loveable stereotypes and evil Rooskies. Burt Young, now pure comic relief, even gets a robot girlfriend it's implied he's having a, er, physical relationship with. Unfortunately the good guys are so smug and overconfident in the first third of the film you're more likely to cheer for the bad guys when one exhibition bout turns fatal. This being the 80s and Stallone being the poster boy for the Reagan era there's never any doubt about the outcome of his payback bout in Moscow, though the ending does provide plenty of unintentional laughter as, visibly moved by Stallone's oratory about how "I can change, you can change!" Mikhail Gorbachev decides to dismantle the Soviet Union and embrace capitalism. Well, not quite, but he does lead the Politburo in giving him a hearty round of applause.

The only one of the series to lose money, Rocky V saw Avildsen return to the director's chair and Stallone coming up with a much stronger story as Rocky returns from Russia to find his house and son are completely different (though we're supposed not to notice the change of location and cast), his accountant has emptied his bank account and he's developed brain damage that will prevent him rebuilding his fortune in the ring, but despite the back to basics approach for the first third the film doesn't really land enough punches to really work. Unfortunately Avildsen isn't able to inject much realism into many of the scenes, too many of which don't rise much above the level of mediocre TV movie acting and directing (the press conference scenes are especially unconvincingly written and staged), and the sickly sentimentality sinks to a series low in the nauseatingly saccharine flashback sequence where Burgess Meredith's Mickey gushingly talks of his love and pride for Rocky, who dubs him his angel on his shoulder. Not only is it like being beaten over the head with a Hallmark greetings card by a cute puppy dog for several minutes, it's almost as if Stallone had never even seen a Rocky film before and didn't know that the characters' relationship was built more on resentment, desperation and anger than mutual admiration. It's enough to make you lose your lunch, your breakfast and some meals you ate last week too and we can only be thankful a second dream sequence hit the cutting room floor (though Meredith does make an unwelcome return in flashback snippets in the otherwise effective finale).

Thankfully things do improve immensely once Rocky finds himself back in the old neighbourhood - and his old hat - neglecting his own son as he gets caught up in managing Tommy Morrison's up and coming fighter Tommy Gunn until a Don Kingalike promoter steals him away and it's time to face off against his one-time protégé, not in the ring but, in a surprising bout of novelty for the series, in a vicious street fight. In fact there's little time spent in the ring this time round (no training montage either), with only two fairly brief bouts, neither featuring Stallone, though in the film's most effective sequence he does find himself pre-enacting the contender's every move before he makes it while watching the fight on TV. There's more meat for the actors too, with Stallone pleasingly closer to the original genially punch-drunk Rocky than the slick superman of the previous two films, Talia Shire actually having a little bit more to do than just sit in Rocky's corner waiting for her one motivational speech and Burt Young delivering an excellent performance despite not really having much to do now that his character is a more recognisable human being than the comic relief cartoon he became in the earlier sequels. Not everything in the last two-thirds does work as well as it could, but enough of it works well enough to forgive - though not unfortunately forget - the horrible start and make for one of the more satisfying entries in the series, and it's a shame that Stallone subsequently all but disowned it.

After the failure of Rocky V it took Stallone the best part of two decades to get MGM/UA to back Rocky Balboa, and then only on a tiny budget. The end result may have been a decent box-office hit (though nowhere near as successful as any of the first four films) that was popular with the critics but it's still a pretty average film that coasts by more on its good nature and nostalgia for the character than on a compelling story or much in the way of drama. Now a widower running a restaurant where he entertains the customers with old fight stories and acts as a font of wisdom to all and sundry, he's dragged back into an incredibly unlikely exhibition match with the current world champion after a computer simulation predicts the younger Rocky would have beaten him in the ring, but although the film touches on the loss of pride and self-worth that comes with age as your triumphs and best days get further away it never really offers that much in the way of dramatic threat: everybody likes Rocky, every problem is sorted out almost as soon as it raises its head and there's nothing really left to prove other than the star's need to end the franchise on a hit in the same way that Rocky still thinks he has one great fight left in him. As such it ambles along quite likeably, tipping its hat occasionally to moments or characters from the earlier films and raising the odd salient point about the decline of boxing as showbiz and big-money saps it of its credibility, but like the fight itself it doesn't really feel like it needed to happen. It's also a surprisingly insipid looking film too, with the kind of desaturated and diffused cheap TV show look doesn't do it any favors. It just about goes the distance, but it's thin stuff.

The sixth film is the only one in the set to offer a decent extras package - audio commentary by Sylvester Stallone, 7 deleted scenes and alternate ending, boxing bloopers, a couple of featurettes and trailer. While there was a two-disc special edition of the first film, that only made it to a long-deleted previous boxed set - the six-disc set simply offers a trailer on the first film and no extras at all on sequels II-V. The widescreen transfers are decent but not outstanding, making this a set to pick up for the films alone, so you might want to watch out for it at a lower price.
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on 8 September 2011
forget all the cliches and the bad reviews, this boxset shows how great rocky was back in the early days of stallones career, the first rocky ageing particularly well. If the movies relied upon the soundtracks alone that would be enough. One of the greatest title themes in movie history.
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on 30 January 2010
This is a collection of all the "Rocky" movies -following the whole life of the boxer Rocky Balboa in his ups and downs trough his life, personally and profesionally. This is the ONLY time I've actually enjoyed watching boxing. The films follows the boxing-sport, as it is showing not only the fights themselves -great filming- but also it's backsides.I'm catched by the emosionally strong scenes in victories and defeats. Brilliantly played by all actors!
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on 4 March 2008
The best movie franchise of all time. Stallone may have made a few dodgy decicions in his career but Rocky movies always deliver. Number 5 was a strange ending so he came back with number 6 even though people laughed in his face and pre-judged the movie which just made it all the more satisfying when it was released to critical acclaim.
Every guy should own this.
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on 22 March 2009
The box set of the films is at a very good price and as such you will get many brilliant films for less than £20. Each film represents a different stage in Rocky's life and you can see him grow up and become old, while fighting in excellent boxing fights.
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on 11 December 2008
As a collection the Rocky films are greater than the sum of the individual films, telling a story that is, in turns, inspiring, motivating and heartbreaking.

Rocky I and II are like two halves of the same film and in their 70s grittiness are up there with Raging Bull. Rocky III and IV are classic 80s action movies and either one would be good ingredients in an 80s time capsule. Rocky V, morose and depressing, is probably the low point in the collection. As with all the other movies, though, the fight scene at the end has you really, really wanting Rocky to win. Rocky Balboa does stretch credibility (but no more than does Rocky IV, as Rocky stands up to a ridiculous battering from Drago that would kill any man) and features a weak story line, but it's a touching film neverthless. Bill Conti's signature music has been slowed down and its a sad affair, hinting at an end to things and a close of the cycle.

It's interesting that none of these films actually have much boxing in them. The fights that there are are brilliantly choreographed and breath-taking.

Stallone's warm-hearted, immensely likeable charcacterisation of Rocky, Bill Conti's inspirational music and the thrilling, motivating training sequences are strengths. Five out of the six films make the hair stand up on the back of your neck.

On their own, probably only Rockys I and II merit a 5-star rating (and possibly Rocky IV for its overblown 80sness), the 'morose' Rocky V probably only meriting a 3. However, as a collection and a story these films really come into their own.
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on 26 December 2013
I remember when the very first movie was released in 1977 I was 13, I thought a new boxer was rising until I realised it was a movie. Even so I remember the film being released I never watched it until after I watched Rocky 3 at the cinima, I was impressed with Rocky 3 especially the match with boxer against westler. But it wasn't intil 2011 I watched all six movies in order, the first 2 one as to give them 5 star, not because of the glory but the story line of a down and out boxer rising to the top, a magnificent story as we have all sometime in our life been poor and had to rise from nothing, maybe not in the glory of Rocky. Once we reach our peak its then I feel our minds come in and we start thinking more then doing, Rocky 3 and 4 where great future movies but moved away from reality, I would give these two movies 4 star even so they are great movies and exciting fights they moved away from the realistic story line the first two produced. Rocky 5 and 6 maybe the saga should of stopped at 4, I would give these 3 star just long just watchable movies as even in a 100 years time you will never see a fighter over 50 fighting the world champion of the world, even in reality Goerge Foreman made a return at 44 years old but there was no real fighters he got the title from, i.e Mike Tyson or Lenox Lewis, it's just not reality becoming a punching bag for th younger fighter. When Mike Tyson lost is title it was a one off fight for the fighter he never won anything after that, we all can have one off victories in life but to continue after that is the hard work. Brillent movies is Rocky but lost reality after the first two, the second two very watchable but the last two just watchable, but great value for money.
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