20 Movies That Prove That The 1970s Was The Best Decade For Film

18. Rocky

'His whole life was a million-to-one shot' Rocky Balboa may be an iconic character that made Sylvester Stallone a star, but, for a time, it looked as if the film might not have been made at all. Stallone wrote the script to Rocky after Chuck Wepner went fifteen rounds with Muhammad Ali in 1975 with Rocky being an amalgamation of several different fighters including Rocky Marciano and Joe Frazier. Sly would only sell the script to United Artists if he could star in the film, with the studio preferring Robert Redford, Ryan O'Neal and Burt Reynolds. The studio eventually acquiesced on the condition that the budget was kept low and changes were made to the script and the rest is history. Rocky cost just shy of $2m to make and returned a staggering £225m at the worldwide box-office, winning Best Picture and Best Director for John G. Avildsen at the Academy Awards and spawning a (to date) five sequel franchise. For all of the jingoism, rabble-rousing and iconic scenes in the later films, the original is pretty melancholy at times. Hell, Rocky doesn't even win the fight against Creed.

Student of film. Former professional wrestler. Supporter of Newcastle United. Don't cry for me, I'm already dead...