Scene of the Week: Rocky II End Scene
Another week down, and another week closer to christmas, meaning another Scene of the Week, with this week being in aid of the up-and-coming release, Creed II. The scene I have chosen is one that gets me at the back of the throat everytime, the moment Rocky finally overcomes Apollo Creed in Rocky II and executes his winning speech perfectly.
Rocky II isn’t everyone’s favourite Rocky but it is certainly up there with the better films of the saga. In Rocky I we see Rocky go the distance with the World Boxing Champ, Apollo Creed, but doesn't actually win. Due to Creed feeling embarrassed that this amatuer boxer, Rocky, took him to a points tie-breaker, he challenges Rocky to a re-match which Rocky accepts, and in the end, wins, leading me on to this week’s scene…
With both boxers fighting for the win in the last round, completely exhausted, they both collide, throwing the pair to the ground. Due to both of the boxers being absolutely drained of energy, both struggling to get up within the 10 seconds they have to rise. Just as the referee calls the number 10, Rocky manages to reach his feet, seeing Creed fall back down to his. As Rocky stands up to get the win, the final bell is rung, and the incredible overture by Bill Conti is played, instantly capturing the emotional nature of the film. Barely being able to stand Rocky is handed the belt, he breaks into his speech which is superbly delivered.
“Excuse me. I can't believe this has happened. I can't. And I just wanna say thanks to Apollo for fighting me. Apollo. I wanna thank Mickey, for training me. “ Rocky tirelessly says down the mic, with blood gushing from his face. As Rocky goes to continue his speech a fan calls out to him, “We love ya Rock” with the Italian Stallion replying in the way we all expect “Yeah I love yous too”. I love this little bit, as it really sums up Rocky, that he’s just such a kind guy, and brings a different side to boxing. Rock then proceeds with his speech, “I just also wanna thank God. Except for my kid bein' born, this is the greatest night in the history of my life. I just wanna say one thing to my wife who's home: YO, ADRIAN! I DID IT!” the screen jumps to Adrian, crying with pure happiness, the music from Bill Conti reaches it climax, in turn, creating one of the most heart warming endings in cinema.
As mentioned before, the score is composed by Bill Conti, of which he has created countless classics for the Rocky saga, with the track Overture, played in this scene, being one of the highlights. Everytime I listen to it, it brings me back to this scene, and the bags of uplifting emotions it makes you feel.
There are so many little details to this scene which I love, such as once the bell rings, and Rocky wins you see him collapse into a member of his team, only cementing that exhaustion he is feeling and in parallel to this you see Creed being picked up off the ground. Or when Micky, his trainer, hugs him right at the end, highlighting the more father/son relationship they have.
The Rocky saga is one of a kind. The character himself is one of the most relatable, nicest and genuine on screen and I for one cannot get enough of him. There’s an honesty to these films which people love, that they have managed to capture within Creed as well. This scene represents this perfectly and is one I will never get bored of. I hope Creed II keeps this theme going, and I am sure it will as long as Sylvester Stallone is a part of them.