Rocky IV: Rocky vs Drago review – silly director’s cut is a losing battle

Sylvester Stallone’s attempt to put a new sheen on his Cold War relic of a sequel is a ridiculous and largely pointless undertakingThere’s a tension in the Rocky series between two largely incompatible conceits: Rocky Balboa as the shy, humble, gentleman brawler from working-class Philly or Rocky Balboa as the cartoon avatar of America’s can-do spirit, intrepidly grinding through title matches against stronger, faster, more colorful opponents.

The first type won a best picture Oscar for its young writer/star, Sylvester Stallone, who, in classic underdog fashion, was wildly overmatched against All the President’s Men, Bound for Glory, Network, and Taxi Driver.

The second type dominated the next decade in ever-more garish and cynical vehicles, none dumber than Rocky IV, which pitted The Italian Stallion against Ivan Drago, a dead-eyed, machine-tooled robot of the Soviet empire.Now that Creed and its sequel have brought the vintage Rocky back — and,

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