My husband and I saw Creed II over Black Friday weekend. It stars It stars Sylvester Stallone, Michael B. Jordan, Tessa Thompson, Dolph Lundgren, and Wood Harris. It is directed by Steven Caple Jr. and produced by Sylvester Stallone, Kevin, King-Templeton, Charles Winkler, William Chartoff, David Winkler, Irwin Winkler, and Udi Nedivi.
The movie is about Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan) who is challenged by Viktor Drago (Florian Munteanu), son of Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren), who killed Adonis’ father in the fourth Rocky movie. Adonis also deals with his ongoing mentoring relationship with Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and his growing family.
I thought that since my husband I saw the movie together, it would be appropriate for us to review this together as well.
The Creed movies are a great way to inroduce “today’s” audiences to the Rocky movies. Even if they don’t see the original franchise, it’s nice that this generation can get to know the Rocky character while being introduced to an equally talented, new boxer with a new (but once again, just as good) story arc as the orignal.
There’s a reason this franchise has survived the test (and decay) of time, as well as its own stumbles; the films are not truly about boxing. That’s the in-universe vehicle to make the story work, but you don’t have to know a right hook from a sucker punch to still connect with the drama that unfolds. The third act is always a man versus a man, but at its core is a truimph of a hero over himself.
We don’t know if it’s a was planned for the Russians to come back or if it’s because, like in in the fourth Rocky movie, we weren’t on good terms with the Russians. But all-in-all, it was fitting for Adnois to fight Viktor and show him have a major crisis, and not just a career one we’re talking about. Michael better get nominated for an Oscar this year!
So what did and didn’t we like? Well, to answer the second question first, not much. The film was pretty solid. Perhaps the directing didn’t have quite the same stamp that Ryan Coogler put on the first Creed, but that’s really just a reach to nitpick. The film glows with energy, from Tessa Thompson’s musical number to Michael B. Jordan’s meltdown. Lundgren in particular proves that he’s got a stronger acting range than his “I must break you” reputation has led us to believe. In the end, we found ourselves not just rooting for Creed, but for the nations of the world to just hug it all out.
Fans of the orginal will like this as much as incoming fans will. This is a movie for everyone. Make sure you see it right away, we’re sure glad we did!