Rocky IV may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think “holiday movie” but we know that any film has the capacity to become a seasonal favorite when watched at this special time of year. Oftentimes, the most beloved watching traditions include films that evoke the holiday spirit rather than tell a holiday story. Our tradition of programming our holiday schedule with a mixture of classics and films that may become them began last year with Gremlins. We can’t wait to break out the peppermints & popcorn with you this year!
Rocky IV, released in 1985 and directed by Sylvester Stallone, is a powerful and iconic entry in the Rocky franchise. The film follows the story of Rocky Balboa, played by Stallone himself, as he faces his most formidable opponent yet, the Soviet Union's boxing champion Ivan Drago, portrayed by Dolph Lundgren. Driven by revenge and fueled by patriotism, Rocky trains relentlessly to avenge the death of his friend Apollo Creed, who was brutally defeated by Drago in the ring. The film explores themes of determination, sacrifice, and the indomitable human spirit. With its intense training montages, epic boxing matches, and a memorable soundtrack, including the iconic "Eye of the Tiger," Rocky IV captivates audiences with its high-energy action and emotional depth. Beyond the boxing ring, the film also serves as a commentary on the Cold War era, highlighting the ideological tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union. Rocky IV remains a beloved installment in the franchise, showcasing Stallone's talent as both an actor and a director, and leaving a lasting impact on the sports drama genre.