“Rocky V” presented a continuity error regarding the age of Robert Balboa Jr., but the explanation for this could be in the events of “Rocky IV”. Before “Rocky Balboa”, “Creed” and “Creed II” arrived more than a decade later, “Rocky V” was considered the last film in the franchise. The sequel marked a return to his Philadelphia roots with his family and his grown son. What was this due to?
To make sense of this change in the franchise universeit is necessary to observe the political interference of the Soviet Union in the previous installment.
In “Rocky IV,” Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) squared off against Russian Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren) in a highly politicized fight to avenge the death of his friend, Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers). The Soviets constantly harassed and stalked Rocky during his training, and fighting became a weapon in the conflict between the United States and Russia in the Cold War.
THE AGE OF ROCKY’S SON, A PROBLEM FOR THE FRANCHISE
After an epic fight, Rocky apparently earned the respect of the country and was applauded. His nine-year-old son Robert (then played by Rocky Krakoff) was back home watching the game from Rocky’s lavish mansion. However, when Balboa returned to the United States in “Rocky V”, his son was 14 years old and was played by Stallone’s son in real life, Sage.
The issue of Robert Balboa’s age left viewers wondering, particularly since the film apparently takes place directly after the events of the previous film. However, one theory suggests that the two sequels were not as closely linked in time as they seemed.
As Ivan Drago reveals in “Creed II,” he was deported for his embarrassing loss to Rocky, prompting him to train his son, Victor, to fight Adonis Creed and regain the family’s honor. According to the theory, the cruel treatment of the Drago family and Robert’s huge jump in age hint that something sinister happened to the Balboa family in Russia between Rocky IV and Rocky V.
EXPLANATION OF THE THEORY
According to the theory you shared ScreenRantRobert Balboa went from being nine years old in “Rocky IV” to 14 in “Rocky V” because the Balboa family was detained in the Soviet Union after publicly humiliating the country.
Although Rocky publicly seemed to have earned the respect of the country and its leaders, his victory over Iván Drago made him unable to return to the United States for immigration reasons. While this probably wouldn’t have been a prison sentence, it would still mean that Rocky, Adrian (Talia Shire), Paulie (Burt Young), and Duke (Tony Burton) were stuck in Russia for five years, trying to get through the red tape of getting back to The USA.
Rocky, Adrian and Paulie being stuck in the Soviet Union for all those years would explain why Robert had aged so much in the fifth film.
THE REAL REASON FOR ROCKY’S SON’S AGE DIFFERENCE
While this theory justifies why Rocky Jr. looked so much older in “Rocky V,” there’s a much simpler explanation outside of the movie universe. The fifth installment sought to focus more on the characters after the sensational stories of “Rocky III” and “Rocky IV”, and Rocky’s relationship with Tommy Gunn and Robert was one of the biggest plot points in the sequel.
While Robert had been a very minor character in the fourth, the script for the fifth gave him a leading rolewith a teenage attitude, a troubled relationship with his father and difficulties adjusting to life in Philadelphia.
Robert was played by Sylvester Stallone’s real-life son, Sage Stallone, in “Rocky V,” offering another reason why he was so much older in the installment. Since the film was about the father-son relationship between Rocky and Robert, it seemed natural to cast Stallone’s real son as Rocky Jr., despite the continuity error he introduced after part four of the story.
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