DVD Review: ‘Creed’ is a total knockout of a film

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Warner Bros. Pictures

Logan King, Staff Writer

The original “Rocky” movie is considered one of the greatest underdog stories ever told and a film that helped inspire a generation in the 1970s. “Creed” is a movie that pays homage to the original Rocky movies, while simultaneously trying to be its own movie.

The story follows boxing legend Apollo Creed’s love child, Adonis Creed (Michael B Jordan). Adonis carries a dream to become a professional boxer, but he doesn’t want to be in the shadows of his father’s legacy. To achieve his goals, he takes the alias Adonis “Hollywood Donnie” Johnson and travels to Philadelphia to seek coaching from retired boxing legend and his father’s old rival/friend, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone). The film then builds up in great mix of excitement and drama, while also asking the question on what it means to own a name.

The film’s plot consists of some of the familiar formulas that made the original “Rocky” films so great, though it also includes great dramatic elements that give the movie a fresh flair. This film respectfully pays homage to all of the “Rocky” movies, yet it also simultaneously stands out as its own independent movie. You don’t need to have experience any of the previous “Rocky movies” in order to fully enjoy this film.

Michael B. Jordan gives out a breakout performance as Adonis Creed, as Jordan is able to truly act out the character’s fighting spirit and dramatic issues. Meanwhile, Sylvester Stallone comes out of nowhere with his phenomenal performance as Rocky Balboa. Not to say Stallone is a bad actor, but some of his recent films have not been well received. He performs Rocky as an old and experienced mentor, thus allowing Stallone to reveal different ranges of his acting abilities. His role in the film has even been recognized with his first Oscar nomination since his debut performance in “Rocky.” Jordan and Stallone both give excellent performances as their characters, while sharing a great chemistry of mentorship and family between the two.

Even though this a boxing movie, don’t expect to see many boxing matches in this film. To be specific, there only two boxing matches that are shown in the entire movie. These matches are all a thrill to watch; they will get you or anyone into a fighting spirit. There was one particular boxing scene that was all seemingly shot in a single take, an example of the film’s technical prowess.

One of the film’s best moments comes from the training montage between Adonis and Rocky. The training sequences have always been considered the signature mark of the “Rocky” series, more so than the actual fights. The reason why the training sequences are great is because they tend to effectively build up the viewer’s energy and anticipation for the big fight. What really makes this film’s training sequence an excitement to watch is Ludwig Göransson’s music played in the background. Similar to the “Rocky” theme “Gonna Fly Now,” Göransson’s music helps adds to the scene’s feeling of excitement that helps carry on to the rest of the film.

“Creed” is a movie that derives off the “Rocky” series, while not being afraid to taking new dramatic turns and stand out as its own movie. Anyone who watches this movie will most likely feeling pumped and energized once the end credits roll. Much like “Rocky” in the 1970s and 1980s, “Creed” is an outstanding underdog story that can serve as an inspiration for the current generation.

Our Grade: A
“Creed”
Rated: PG-13
Length: 133 Minutes
Genre: Sports, Drama
Directed by: Ryan Coogler
Starring: Michael B. Jordan, Sylvester Stallone, Tessa Thompson