ROCKY MOVIES, RANKED

"Creed" is out in a few weeks and I recently went through the Italian Stallion's complete adventures. Gonna rank now!
  1. 1.
    ROCKY (1976)
    Not so much a sports movie as a love story between two incomprehensible weirdos, the original has a generous helping of heart to match its black eyes and broken ribs.
  2. 2.
    ROCKY III (1982)
    From the opening chords of "Eye of the Tiger," you can see the series illuminate from indie character study to moneymaking juggernaut. Bonus points for Mr. T in the role he was born to play (Mr. T) and Apollo helping Rocky win by becoming an asshole.
  3. 3.
    ROCKY IV (1985)
    "Rocky IV" is great in full spite of almost nothing happening—at 90 minutes, it's the shortest in the series—because of the insane stakes. The guy earned, lost, and earned his title by this point; what's left other than to help topple a scary superpower through fisticuffs?
  4. 4.
    ROCKY BALBOA (2006)
    Saying bad things about "Rocky Balboa" is like yelling at your grandfather, and while that's artistically problematic in a way, this is still a satisfying if simple film, not to mention a fine close to the Rocky saga proper.
  5. 5.
    ROCKY II (1979)
    Don't get me wrong, the sequel is fine, but it seems to have the least nutso personality out of the series, which is somewhat detrimental for a series as wacky as Rocky.
  6. 6.
    ROCKY V (1990)
    It's something of a marvel that the series only started to look bad after 14 years and five films, but boy is this terrible. The movie is outright mean to the hero, and the villains (a boxer who could've been in "Road House" and his skeevy promoter) are unmemorable after a hot streak of two Carl Weatherses, a Mr. T, and Dolph Lundgren. Disqualified.