Rocky V (1990) - Rotten Tomatoes

Rocky V1990

Rocky V (1990)



Critic Consensus: Rocky V's attempts to recapture the original's working-class grit are as transparently phony as each of the thuddingly obvious plot developments in a misguided installment that sent the franchise flailing into longterm limbo.

Rocky V Photos

Movie Info

Touted upon its release as the finale of the Rocky saga, this fifth entry in the long-running series of sports dramas reunites star Sylvester Stallone with John G. Avildsen, director of the Oscar-winning original. Stallone is Rocky Balboa, suffering from career-ending brain damage as a result of his punishing bout with Ivan Drago at the finale of the previous film. Upon their return to Philadelphia, Rocky and his wife, Adrian (Talia Shire), discover they are broke, their fortune squandered by an incompetent accountant. Forced to move back to their working-class neighborhood, Rocky finds that his only asset is the run-down gym willed to him by Mickey (Burgess Meredith, who appears in new flashback sequences). Resisting big money offered to him by Don King-like boxing promoter George Washington Duke (Richard Gant), Rocky becomes a trainer and finds a talented comer in Tommy Gunn (real-life boxer Tommy Morrison, nephew of John Wayne). Rocky's son (played by Stallone's real-life son Sage Stallone) feels neglected by his father, who lavishes attention on his protégé, but Tommy ultimately turns his back on his mentor to sign a more lucrative deal with Duke, leading to a street-fight showdown.

Watch it now


Sylvester Stallone
as Rocky Balboa
Tommy Morrison
as Tommy 'Machine' Gunn
Burt Young
as Paulie
Sage Stallone
as Rocky Balboa Jr.
Richard Gant
as George Washington Duke
Michael Sheehan
as Merlin Sheets
Hayes Swope
as Chickie's Pal
Nicky Blair
as Fight Promoter
James Binns
as Himself
Meade Martin
as Las Vegas Announcer
Michael Buffer
as Fight Announcer, 3rd Fight
Ben Geraci
as Cab Driver
Clifford C. Coleman
as Motorcycle Mechanic
Patrick Cronin
as Dr. Rimlan
LeRoy Neiman
as Fight Announcer
Michael Pataki
as Nicolai Koloff
Carol A. Ready
as Russian Woman
Katherine Margiotta
as Woman in Dressing Room
Stu Nahan
as Fight Commentator
Al Bernstein
as Fight Commentator
Lou Filippo
as Referee
Lauren K. Woods
as Conference Reporter
Robert Seltzer
as Conference Reporter
Albert S. Meltzer
as Conference Reporter
John P. Clark
as Conference Reporter
Stanley R. Hochman
as Conference Reporter
Elmer Smith
as Conference Reporter
Henry D. Tillman
as Contender #1
Stan Ward
as Contender #2
Brian Phelps
as Reporter
Henry D. Tilman
as Commander
Paul Cain
as Reporter
Cindy Roberts
as Reporter
Helena Carroll
as Woman Drinker
Tony Munafo
as Drinker
Bob Vazquez
as Drinker
Gary Compton
as Drinker
Jennifer Flavin
as Delivery Girl
Tricia Flavin
as Delivery Girl
Julie Flavin
as Delivery Girl
Mark de Alessandro
as Stunt Double
View All

Critic Reviews for Rocky V

All Critics (37) | Top Critics (9)

Rocky V is not as awful as we had imagined. There is more feeling in this one -- a relief from the steroid-pumped cartoons that were Rocky III and Rocky IV -- but the feeling is, alas, recycled.

August 18, 2021 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

The dramatic moves are so obvious and shopworn that not even the star's mournful basset-hound expressions can redeem them.

December 19, 2006

Whereas the first and far superior Rocky had real heart, this tries and fails to have brains.

February 9, 2006 | Full Review…

A sloppy but good-natured reminder of just what it is that has kept Rocky Balboa afloat for 14 years.

May 20, 2003 | Rating: 3/5

In Rock V, the underdog is officially diagnosed as 'brain damaged.' Yo. So what else is new?

January 1, 2000 | Full Review…

Like watching some favourite relative die, Stallone subjects the viewer to a miserable and pathetic end for such an enduring character.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Rocky V


As far as brain damage goes, Rocky V is a shameful idiocy that cannot even justify why it was made, given how the whole family drama seems completely forced, the excess of sappiness is painful to see and in the end it all comes down to unnecessary, pointless street-fighting.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer


Ambitious to a point, "Rocky V" tries far too hard to create a human drama, rather than a triumphant boxing story, which is what this film series is meant to be like. This time, Rocky is done fighting once and for all, and once a newcomer thinks he is the best, he is trained by the world champion. Throughout the film, he wins the title, but is forced into dangerous times, agreeing to things he shouldn't and ending up in worse places than Rocky ever was. This is not a Rocky films, this is a spin-off that only works half of the time. It's not a good film in any way, but there are elements that I really admired. It's not as bad of a film as some people make it out to be, but it's middle of the road. I would never recommend it though.

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

Stallone trades in the ambiance of a big-fight atmosphere for senseless street-fighting. Rocky V is an unacceptable installment that tarnishes the already back-down-on-his-luck fighter. The uninspiring acting and street-smart vibe is just as damaging as the fighter's brain in this film. But though the film has some significant damages it still manages to be somewhat uplifting with the lack of magic it possessed. 3/5

Eugene Bernabe
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer

Rocky V Quotes

News & Features