Monday, January 11, 2010
Hollywood's Satanic Agenda (19): Rocky Balboa
We know what you're thinking, "Rocky, too?!" Afraid so.
2006's Rocky Balboa, the sixth film in the franchise, is the character's swan song before being put to rest. These points--sixth and rest--are not insignificant here, as we'll see. What a crushing disappointment for Rocky fans, this film, as it represents the end of an era for not only Rocky, but covertly for God as well.
Regular readers may compare this to another sports film, Talladega Nights, in which the god-figure wants to be defeated so that he can be released of some responsibility. Same thing is happening here: Rocky wants to come full circle, like Rambo, and finish what needs to be finished as though he has recognized the end of his tenure.
As we begin, let's make note of two points: God worked for six days, then rested; that was the sabbath. This film is Rocky's sixth and final chapter, then he will finally rest. There are several Biblical, religious, divine allusions or direct references made during the film: all of them directed at Rocky. Rocky is a stand-in for God. There is no way around this as much as we would like it to not be so.
After some boxing montage of the opposition, the story begins in a cemetery in the fall. Rocky's wife Adrian has died and he visits her grave site often.
Symbolically, we get the visual impression of death and decay, the passing of a generation. Rocky is seen pining for his wife and we can probably assume that he anticipates death to reunite with her. This kind of "death wish" ties in with the desire to complete this process.
The opposition--not necessarily the "bad guy"-- is the heavyweight champ Mason "The Line" Dixon, who is enduring a minor crisis due to lack of respect. He's the new guy, the risen star, but the people are not ready to accept him.
His name is no accident; the quickie from Wiki:
"The Mason-Dixon Line (or "Mason and Dixon's Line") was surveyed between 1763 and 1767 by Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon in the resolution of a border dispute between British colonies in Colonial America. It forms a demarcation line among four U.S. states, forming part of the borders of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, and West Virginia (then part of Virginia). In popular usage, especially since the Missouri Compromise of 1820 (apparently the first official use of the term "Mason's and Dixon's Line"), the Mason-Dixon Line symbolizes a cultural boundary between the Northern United States and the Southern United States (Dixie)."
Recall that the "colonies" were referred to as the New World, and Europe of course was the Old World. The Mason-Dixon Line separated the old from new, as does the character in the film. Rocky is the Old World Order, Dixon is the New World Order.
Another common cinematic device is the color of the hat, or clothing: white hats for the good guys, and black for the bad, that's the convention. Here the colors are again used to illustrate the conflict between light and darkness. Throughout the film Rocky wears the dark clothing and his boxing robe and trunks are black. Dixon's color is mostly white, i.e., he's the new good guy, or the new god.
ESPN does a simulated bout between Rocky and Dixon to compare the two ages; Rocky wins according to the simulation. But there is much dispute about a real world fight.
These days Rocky runs a small restaurant named Adrian's. The restaurant is a shrine to the legend himself and customers go there to see him, get photos taken with him, and hear his stories. He's still "the people's champ" in Philly.
One night Rocky runs into a girl he knew a long time ago, Marie (also from the first film). The two become friends and Rocky later replaces a light bulb above the front door. Anyone who sees the film will notice that this lightbulb episode is deliberately added to the sub-narrative as it occupies two scenes and isn't at all important to the story.
After replacing the bulb, Rocky says, "Hey, Little Marie, Let there be light!" So here's our first Rocky/God allusion as these were God's words in the Book of Genesis. Genesis being the first book, we notice here the return to the beginning theme, or coming full circle.
Marie's son is called Steps, short for Stephenson; he is a mixed race having a white mother and black father, and this too is significant.
Marie is a derivative of Mary, as in Mother Mary. Rocky calls her "Little Marie" as he remembers her but alludes to a second Mary, or new Mary.
Steps too represents the next step in the New World. The mix between the light and dark, just as the conflict between Rocky and Dixon.
In a weird scene as Rocky is trying to be-father Steps, he takes him to a dog pound to pick out a dog for some reason. Rocky tells the boy, "Don't you want to name an animal? I think every guy should at one time name an animal."
That's our second Rocky/God reference; it was also in the Book of Genesis that God brought the animals to Adam to be named. Genesis 2:19:
"And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof."
Steps is the new Adam, or new man of the age.
Rocky's real son, Robert, is pretty upset when Rocky tells him he wants to fight again. Rocky tells him, "What's crazy about standing toe to toe and saying 'I am'?"
This strangely incongruous question is an allusion to Exodus 3:14, when Moses asked God what his name was: "And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you."
At this point, there can be no doubt that Rocky represents God.
When he tells his brother-in-law Paulie about his intentions to fight, Paulie asks him, "You're mad because they took down your statue?"
He's referring to the Rocky statue from the first film. A statue is a graven image, or possibly an idol, as Rocky is in Philly; however, the statue has been removed, indicating that his reign is over, the age has ended. Rocky even admits that this bothers him a little.
Rocky later has to appear before the boxing commission to apply for his license. Oddly enough, Rocky doesn't appear in the center of the frame as he, or any character, normally would. This frame composition seems to emphasize the empty chairs to his right. His son is against the idea, Paulie said he couldn't help him train, and now he's before the commission representing himself. He is completely alone in this endeavor.
The nexus point between the two fighters has to do with respect. Rocky, the old god, is on his way out for good, and Dixon, the new god, is in, but there is some natural confusion and friction between the ages of gods that needs to be resolved; the people don't know where to put their honor. This film's propaganda is to ease people's mind through this transition.
An exhibition fight is announced.
Rocky begins training much like he did in the first film.
Then it's off to Las Vegas for the fight. Sin City.
The night before the fight the camera pans over the strip. We barely notice the Luxor pyramid in the dark, but then a lightning bolt shoots down almost directly above it. There is a storm in the heavens, a celestial battle about to take place.
One of the commentators asks, "Larry, why is this billed as an exhibition?"
His response, "So they wouldn't have to call it an execution." There are a lot of jokes made at Rocky's age at this point, but this one gets snuck in to tell us that this fight is to eliminate one of the gods.
Before the fight, Spider Rico, also from the original film, reads Zechariah 4:6:
"Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts."
The only problem here is that Spider changes a few things: he says, "It is not by strength, not by might, but by spirit we have already claimed victory in our Lord Jesus Christ."
Obviously there are different translations of this, some saying Lord Jehovah, or Lord Almighty, or even just Lord, but being Old Testament, none says Lord Jesus Christ. This, some may say, is inconsequential; but we would argue that this guy is re-interpreting God's word--it's as though he is actually referring to Rocky himself as "Jesus Christ". This would be contextually consistent given that Jesus said the He and the Father are one.
As Rocky and his corner head toward the ring we have another weird occurrence. Paulie, walking to Rocky's left, takes him by the arm and crosses in front to pull him aside for a final word. Paulie then privately tells Rocky to "get rid of the beast."
The crossover move is totally unnecessary considering their positions as they walk; so the only possible reason for this is to give us a look at the crab on the back of Paulie's shirt forming a black triangle. The crab here is a symbol of the zodiac sign Cancer, which, in alchemical terms, means roots or connecting to the source--another reference to the completion of a cycle.
On his way out, we get Rocky's statistics. We are told that he now weighs 217 pounds. A very interesting number as 217, which, among other things, is Hebrew Gematria for Deborah, meaning bee. We notice that Rocky's robe is black and yellow, like a bee's. Deborah was an Old Testament judge. This fight is judgment time.
One commentator says, "Here comes Balboa for one more last hurrah."
To which another responds, "Or the last supper perhaps." Here the themes of execution, judgment and last supper are overtly tied together.
Mason Dixon also has an interesting robe; he almost looks like a clergyman.
We have all the indications of this being a spiritual battle, and they're still coming.
Mason has some divine numbers on his sheet.
As they fight, they both earn the respect of not only the crowd and commentator, but each other.
One commentator says, "These guys are fighting in another dimension right now." Again, this is a spiritual battle.
But there can be only one winner, and that's Mason Dixon. But Rocky is not the loser by any means. He is perfectly satisfied with his closure. He walks out of the ring even before the winner is announced. He bows out gracefully, with dignity; this is the old age god leaving the spotlight.
The scene ends with a camera zoom on this mysterious handshake as Rocky exits, the other end we never see.
Here we have to think Michelangelo's The Creation of Adam. This is not far fetched as we saw the Adam motif before with Steps at the pound. This handshake represents the closing of a deal; Rocky is about to rest, take his sabbath. The people now respect the new god and order has been restored.
A new order.
at 3:59 AM