Todd Russell’s review published on Letterboxd:
In some ways this is my favorite of the Rocky pictures to rewatch. I give an extra half star to the first one, because without that none of the others happen and that is the greatest love story boxing film of all time. This one also tells a great story. Since I don't want to spoil it, I'll save explaining much of the plot, but the film starts immediately after the completion of Rocky and describes what happens next to the underdog Rocky and Adrian as their love story is explored in much greater depths. My favorite line by Adrian is uttered in this film about 80% in it when she tells Rocky what she wants him to do for her. It's a totally awesome cinematic moment.
I also think that this is Apollo's best film, because we get deeper into his character than any other film in the series. When I look back at this film years later it occurs to me that the injuries Rocky supposedly endured in the first fight are almost forgotten until Rocky V and then again mostly cast aside in Rocky Balboa. If you can put the sequels out of your mind and just sit and enjoy this one, you will.