what Rocky Balboa said to me
You ain’t gonna believe this, but you used to fit right here.
I’d hold you up to say to your mother, “this kid’s gonna be the best kid in the world. This kid’s gonna be somebody better than anybody I ever knew.” And you grew up good and wonderful. It was great just watching you, every day was like a privilege. Then the time come for you to be your own man and take on the world, and you did.
But somewhere along the line, you changed.
You stopped being you. You let people stick a finger in your face and tell you you’re no good. And when things got hard, you started looking for something to blame, like a big shadow.
Let me tell you something you already know.
The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward.
That’s how winning is done!
Now if you know what you’re worth then go out and get what you’re worth. But ya gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody! Cowards do that and that ain’t you! You’re better than that! I’m always gonna love you no matter what. No matter what happens. You’re my son and you’re my blood. You’re the best thing in my life.
But until you start believing in yourself, ya ain’t gonna have a life.
Don’t forget to visit your mother.
You know, people tend to shit on the Rocky movies like they are silly, throw away entertainment. To an extent they’re right, but only to a certain point. These stories, as simple as they may be, are truly about something. I really felt it, when Rocky had these words to share with his son, a young man struggling to define himself – it seemed like he was talking to me. Maybe he was talking to my entire generation. It was terrifying and moving at the same time, to have a movie speak so directly to me, to all the young folks out there who feel directionless and somehow consigned to failure, to just deal with it, and to take control of our lives.
Seeing those words in bold, distanced from Stallone’s often mocked delivery (unjustly so, at least in this case), we can appreciate the heart of the message. I think the acting here was excellent though, and I have included the clip in question below for those of you who want to have Rocky talk to you too.