Like most boxing movies, when the actors are in the ring you’re flinching and engaged. However, once they leave the ring? Well, let’s just say you’ll be counting down to the next fight.
|Director(s)||Steven Caple Jr.|
|Written By||Sylvester Stallone, Juel Taylor|
|Good If You Like||Boxing Movies|
|Ivan Drago||Dolph Lundgren|
|Viktor Drago||Florian Munteanu|
|Adonis||Michael B. Jordan|
|Mary Anne||Phylicia Rashad|
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Summary (Ending on 2nd Page)
It has been approximately 33 years since Ivan Drago killed Apollo Creed in the ring. It also is about the same amount of time since Rocky beat Ivan and made him lose it all. The respect of his country, his wife, and also Rocky ended up causing Ivan’s son, Viktor, to lose the love of his mother. Making Ivan raising Viktor as a fighter, someone who could redeem him, win his mother’s love, maybe make Ivan a star again a big deal. Hence why his sights get set on Apollo Creed’s son Adonis. Someone who sees the potential of this fight as vicariously getting revenge but, with all emotion and no technique, so comes the question if Apollo might have bitten off more than he can chew.
Oh, add in Bianca having his kid and Mary Anne’s life without Apollo haunting both Bianca and Adonis? So comes the question of if the fight is worth it? For Viktor’s technique is just like his father’s and while Rocky beat him, it wasn’t like he easily whooped Ivan’s ass. So what can he really provide to Adonis who is smaller than Viktor, doesn’t pack the same punch, and is slightly blinded? Add in the fight with Viktor is for the world title and you see, as Rocky says, only one person with everything to lose. Making him more vulnerable than he cares to admit.
You Will Absolutely Flinch & Appreciate The Art of Boxing
Creed II will have you moving like your behind is in the ring. You’ll be flinching when Adonis or Ivan get hit, shifting like you’re the one dodging a punch, and looking at every bruise, swollen eye, and blood as if you just saw someone get stabbed countless times. Leading to you really appreciating how brutal this sport is and how much you have to focus on not just brute strength but technique, endurance, and so much more.
And while, naturally, the fights are the climax, better said: the main event, even watching the characters train is strangely exciting. It is like hearing the foot stomps and claps when hearing Queen’s “We Will Rock You” and though montages are often boring as hell, sports movies make use of them in a way to get you hyped. I’m talking, got a few drinks in you, rent money became bet money and you need this win or you will be homeless hyped. Something which is given in the two good fights there are in this movie. The rest, honestly, are matches to build up Viktor as a formidable opponent. Adonis also gets one non-Viktor fight but it isn’t noteworthy.
On The Fence
While You Have To Appreciate The Long History of The Franchise and Adonis’ Relationship With Bianca, It Gets Boring
As we’re reminded quite a few times, the story of Viktor and Adonis trying to avenge their fathers’ defeats is a story over 30 years in the making. Alongside that, we got Rocky dealing with the fact he hasn’t seen his son, Bobby, in many years, Bianca’s career and relationship with Adonis, and them having a baby. A good portion of this 2 hour and 10-minute movie is dedicated to all that. Which, at times, is a problem.
Why? Well, think about it. You go from an intense fight where it is two men punching each other to the point they can’t get up and then go to Adonis proposing. If not Rocky hemming and hawing about not talking to his son for a long time. Those moments, which are focused on character building, they don’t match the energy of what happens in the ring at all.
For example, as much as I love seeing two Black characters together, there isn’t much between Bianca and Adonis to swoon over. Are they cute? Yeah, but they aren’t #Goals or the type of couple whose love is so strong that you could set aside the boxing stuff and see this as a quality romantic movie. Bianca is a supporting character in every which way imaginable. Be it supporting her man when he fights or giving him a reason, if fighting is something he must do, to do so smartly for she doesn’t want to end up like his momma.
All of which, to a point, gives the film some emotion, but never enough to engage you as much as when Viktor and Adonis are in the ring.
Overall: Positive (Worth Seeing) | Purchase Or Rent On (Fandango/ Amazon)
While the personal lives of the characters, like any movie featuring intense action, mostly act as a cool down period, you recognize why it’s necessary. You may check your phone to estimate how much longer you’ll have to deal wait on the next fight, but you know the story is kind of a necessary evil. After all, Rocky missing his kid, Adonis trying to be like his father, yet better, and Viktor trying to not feel the same tinge of abandonment his father dealt with adds another layer to why the fights are important. Hell, it is what makes the ending something you may cry over.
Leading to why the positive label. With respect to the franchise as a whole, and the need to build up to some really epic fights, you’ll come to appreciate what can feel like the duller moments. For while Creed personal life doesn’t match up to his boxing matches, you know neither can be great if its counterpart isn’t included. And, again, let me tell you, when the final boxing match ends, it is because of all those dull and boring parts, combined with the fight you watched, you’ll be mentally exhausted and emotionally may find yourself crying. Thus giving us a respectable entry into the long-running Rocky franchise.
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