The February 23, 2001 issue of Entertainment Weekly has an article titled “The Best of the Best” in which EW ranks the 72 Best Picture Oscar winners. Here’s what they had to say about Rocky:
43 ROCKY 1976
Directed by JOHN G. ALVIDSEN Starring SYLVESTER STALLONE, TALIA SHIRE Nominations 9 Wins 3 Stiffest Competition Taxi Driver, Network
A likable triumph-of-the-underdog tale, but why this boxing fable and not SCORSESE‘s Raging Bull four years later?
Let me begin by pointing out a small error… did you catch it? The listing says that “Rocky” was nominated for 9 Oscars but the right number is 10! I’ve already e-mailed them about the error – so let’s talk about the article…
Articles like these are written to encourage discussion about the subjective rankings of personal favorites. So let me say that, personally, I feel that “Rocky” should be in the Top 10 and without a doubt the Top 20 — I am happy to see that the editors of the piece ranked “Rocky” higher than many past winners [even if they didn’t “get it exactly right.”].
– Craig Zablo