Paradise Alley

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"The Carboni Boys. They haul ice, lay out stiffs and dance with monkeys."
  • PG
  • 1978
  • 1 hr 47 min
  • 5.7  (6,042)
  • 53

In the world of boxing, Paradise Alley is a place where fighters go to train, fight and live. The movie Paradise Alley, written by Sylvester Stallone and directed by him as well, revolves around three brothers, Cosmo (Stallone), Victor (Lee Canalito), and Lenny (Armand Assante), who live in New York City’s Hell's Kitchen during the 1940s. All three brothers have their own dreams of finding success in life, but their individual personalities and ambitions often collide causing them to drift apart.

Cosmo, the middle brother, is a small-time hustler who dreams of earning enough cash to escape the poverty-stricken neighborhood. He is a smooth talker and is always looking for a quick payday. Victor, the oldest brother, was once a successful wrestler but now finds himself resorting to street fighting to get by. He is a gentle giant who is fiercely protective of his younger brothers. Lenny, the youngest brother, is a bright student who dreams of attending college and studying medicine. Lenny is constantly at odds with Cosmo, who tries to convince him to be more streetwise and less book smart.

After Victor is badly beaten in a street fight, the three brothers decide to make a change in their lives by pursuing their ultimate dreams. Cosmo convinces Lenny and Victor to train as professional wrestlers at Paradise Alley, an underground wrestling gym owned by local mob boss Stitch Mahon (Kevin Conway). Stitch sees potential in the brothers and agrees to financially support their training.

The brothers’ relationship is further tested when Cosmo falls in love with Annie (Anne Archer), a singer at a nearby nightclub. Lenny disapproves of the relationship because of Cosmo’s influence on him but eventually comes around.

As the brothers train, they face various challenges and obstacles, including internal conflicts, hidden rivalries, and a fearful wrestler by the name of Frankie the Thumper (Terry Funk). Despite these challenges, the brothers eventually find success as wrestling stars under the ring names of Frankie the Thumper (Victor), Kid Salami (Cosmo), and Mumbles (Lenny).

The movie is filled with poignant moments, well-crafted fight scenes, and a great sense of authenticity. Paradise Alley delivers a powerful message about the importance of family, loyalty, and friendship in the face of adversity. It is a story of three brothers who learn to overcome their personal differences and ultimately find success as a united front.

The performances in the movie are stellar. Stallone delivers a powerful performance as Cosmo, showcasing his versatility as an actor. Canalito’s portrayal of Victor is both heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. Assante’s depiction of Lenny is charming and innocent, making him both lovable and relatable.

The cinematography is top-notch with its depiction of Hell's Kitchen's 1940s setting. The film's score by Bill Conti, who also scored the Rocky franchise, adds an extra layer of emotional depth to the movie.

Overall, Paradise Alley is a hidden gem of a movie that showcases the brilliance of Stallone's writing and directing abilities. It is a story of three brothers who are faced with incredible challenges and who ultimately learn to overcome personal and external obstacles. With strong performances, well-crafted fight scenes, and a brilliantly crafted story, Paradise Alley is definitely worth watching.

Paradise Alley is a 1978 action movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 47 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.7 and a MetaScore of 53.

Paradise Alley
Where to Watch Paradise Alley
Paradise Alley is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Paradise Alley for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 47 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.7  (6,042)
  • Metascore