Last week's remarks regarding Cingular were well-developed and -thought-out. (See "The Cingular Deal: What Could Have Been," River Cities' Reader Issue 613, December 27, 2006-January 2, 2007.) I, like you, understand you can't force a company to choose downtown. I also understand our city may have tried to encourage a downtown site.
However, until we really incent (similar to your illustrations) downtown locations through more creative approaches, we won't achieve downtown as a "location of choice, not consolation of choice" for businesses. We must (working together as public and private sectors) get more creative and unified about the need to do much more for downtowns, particularly Davenport.
Kent Pilcher, President
Latest Rocky Same as It Ever Was
As much as I respect Mike Schulz's critiques, I feel he is way off-base with Rocky Balboa. (See "K-Yo'd," River Cities' Reader Issue 613, December 27, 2006-January 2, 2007.) The Rocky series is and has always been about Rocky.
Your complaint about the use (or misuse) of the new characters in this installment implies that the audience who is coming to see this movie (and judging from the BO, it's mostly old fans rather than new ones) are actually concerned with them. As the series has progressed, the central characters have died off, leaving us with just Rocky. (Paulie doesn't count, as he has been treated as comic relief since Rocky II.) When Stallone did try to share the movie with a character, as he did with his son in Rocky V, the result was a notorious failure.
In this film, Stallone went with what he knew would work with his audience. Call it pandering if you will, but the main reason he made the film in the first place was to atone for the sins of the previous films and return to the basic premise of a guy with something to prove.
This brings me to your main grievance with the film. The "hook" of this film, as you put it, is how Stallone will pull off an aged Rocky fighting the heavyweight champion. The answer to that question is simple, and is addressed clearly in the film: the exact same way he always has. Every Rocky film has been about Rocky overcoming some challenge to win the big fight. No matter the adversity, his heart and determination always seems to prevail.
It is your approval of this concept that determines if you like any of the Rocky films. Yes, these movies are flawed, but by now most people know that. The reason critics have been kind to this movie, I believe, resides with the thought that despite its flaws, it reminds us of what endeared us to Rocky, and Stallone, in the first place.
(Via the River Cities' Reader Web site.)