Search icon


23rd Aug 2023

Rocky IV voted the best movie in the Rocky franchise

Patrick McCarry

“To beat me, he’s gonna have to kill me.”

Over the years, before Creed came along, there were six Rocky movies released. Four of them were absolute classics so this was always going to be tight.

Rocky IV – otherwise known as the movie that ended the Cold War – either has fans, or folks that don’t know what they are on about.

While the original Rocky may have won three Oscars, the follow-up featured that famous training montage and Rocky III the most charismatic ‘bad guy’, Rocky IV was a bubbling melting pot of what made all those other three work so well.

Sure, we lost a beloved Rocky hero along the way and there was a weird, romantic robot plot-line – Sylvester Stallone got rid of that in the re-master – but Rocky IV has some stone-cold classic scenes, and a banger soundtrack.

To settle the long-running question of what is the best Rocky movie, we carried out a poll and got the help of the JOE audience to decide. As it turned out, the final vote ended up with the same top four as this 2018 vote.

Getty Images

Best Rocky movie results

Before we put our Rocky poll in the field, we narrowed the choices down from six to four, and left the Creed series [part of the Rocky universe] to one side.

Rocky V and Rocky Balboa lost out, after rigorous and fun debate, and it left to the opening four movies from the franchise, which spanned from 1976 to 1985. As you can see, there was a clear winner, with Rocky IV getting top spot by a clear margin and the original Rocky – a Best Picture winner at the Oscars – coming in second.

In terms of box-office success, Rocky IV also tops that list, taking in $128 million gross since its’ 1985 release. Rocky III and the original movie are next, followed by Creed II and Creed.

Still, you can’t please everyone, as the folks over at Slash Film will attest. They think Rocky IV is the worst of the entire Rocky and Creed series.

There’s no accounting for taste.

There’s also ‘No Easy Way Out’.