In the very opening scene of Rocky (1976, costume designer Robert Cambel), we see the title character in the ring, bare chested, hands encased in boxing gloves, the picture of sporting violence and masculinity. But this is no more than a surface assumption. Not two minutes later, we see Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) shrug on his faded brown towelling dressing gown, with “The Italian Stallion” embroidered on the back, and things start to shift. This is not a macho film concerned with the fight alone, but an exploration of masculinity in all its guises – the assumptions, the pretence and the reality. Clothes play an important part in this, both…
She may start out in fisherman's knitwear but by the end of Rocky, Talia Shire could not look more feminine.