If you don’t know the iconic boxing flick, Rocky (1976), then you probably don’t know who Adrian is or why Rocky Balboa shouts her name. Even if you’ve rocked “Eye of the Tiger,” from the movie soundtrack on Rock Band, we highly suggest getting in the ring with this classic film.
If Sylvester Stallone isn’t really your prize-fighter, there are a few other movies out there with just as much punch. Duke it out with our list of best boxing films below and don’t forget to weigh in on these classics by leaving a comment. Was it a “Heavyweight Champ” or “Down for the Count?”
Summary: As the most iconic boxing movie of all time, Rocky (PG), starring Sylvester Stallone, is a must see. Train alongside Rocky Balboa, a simple guy with a dream and the perseverance to box in a meat packing plant and pursue the woman he loves. Rocky is the original underdog story that will have you on the edge of your seat cheering as he climbs the steps of victory in life and in the ring.
Tagline: "His whole life was a million-to-one shot."
Summary: Arguably one of the best boxing movies, Million Dollar Baby (PG-13), is also a very well-made film that won four Academy Awards. Hilary Swank, Clint Eastwood and Morgan Freeman star in this incredible drama about a working-class female boxer who seeks the guidance of a hardened trainer who seems past his prime.
Tagline: "Beyond his silence, there is a past. Beyond her dreams, there is a feeling. Beyond hope, there is a memory. Beyond their journey, there is a love."
Summary: While many films focus on the the rise of a young fighter, Cinderella Man (PG-13) starring Russel Crowe and Renee Zellweger, follows the fact-based story of James Braddock, a successful boxer who falls down on his luck (and bills) during the Great Depression. You'll root for this gritty, yet nice-guy boxer as he tries to climb back to the top.
Tagline: "One man's extraordinary fight to save the family he loved."
Summary: Though this film is a documentary, When We Were Kings is commonly known as the best boxing documentary ever made. The film, directed by Leon Gast, covers the famous bout, Rumble in the Jungle, a heavyweight championship match in Zaire between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman in 1974.
Tagline: "The untold story of the Rumble in the Jungle."
Summary: In the early 20th century, when African-American boxer Jack Johnson took his place in the ring, racism threatened to keep him down. As the first black man to win the World Heavyweight Championship, his rise to fame and success was met with much racism and hatred. Follow Johnson's life in The Great White Hope (PG-13) starring James Earl Jones and directed by Martin Ritt.
Tagline: "He could beat any white man in the world. He just couldn't beat all of them."