So, Creed - 8.9 may not seem to be on the same level as my other two reviews, but to be fair, we are talking about Deadpool and the latest installment of Star Wars. But in saying that, allow me to tell you why Creed was, I believe, the one of the best films in the Rocky Franchise.
So first, a brief overview of the Creed movie:
Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) never knew his famous father, boxing champion Apollo Creed, who died before Adonis was born. However, boxing is in his blood, so he seeks out Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and asks the retired champ to be his trainer. Rocky sees much of Apollo in Adonis, and agrees to mentor him, even as he battles an opponent deadlier than any in the ring. With Rocky's help, Adonis soon gets a title shot, but whether he has the true heart of a fighter remains to be seen.
What was good about it?
When I heard that they were making a new film in the continuity of the Rocky franchise, but actually in the Apollo family, I was hyped, I mean, brother representing. It would have been all too familiar for Rocky's son to have taken up the mantle of the new Balboa boxer on the scene.
Allow me to give you a brief overview of the other films in the Rocky franchise:
Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone), a small-time boxer from working-class Philadelphia, is arbitrarily chosen to take on the reigning world heavyweight champion, Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers), when the undefeated fighter's scheduled opponent is injured. While training with feisty former bantamweight contender Mickey Goldmill (Burgess Meredith), Rocky tentatively begins a relationship with Adrian (Talia Shire), the wallflower sister of his meat-packer pal Paulie (Burt Young). (Rocky 1977).
Although working-class Philadelphia boxer Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) lost his high-profile bout with the cocky world champion Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers), his Cinderella story has caught the national sports media's attention, and he now has the opportunity to capitalize on his sudden fame. Meanwhile, Creed is still smarting from nearly losing to some palooka no one has ever heard of, and arrogantly prods his newfound nemesis into getting back into the ring. (Rocky II 1979)
Having become the world heavyweight champion, former working-class boxer Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) is rich and famous beyond his wildest dreams, which has made him lazy and overconfident. In a double whammy, he loses his trainer and father figure Mickey (Burgess Meredith) and then has his title stolen by the arrogant, menacing challenger Clubber Lang (Mr. T). Turning to his former adversary, Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers), for help, Rocky struggles to get his old fire back. (Rocky III 1982)
After reclaiming the boxing championship title, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) plans to retire and live with his wife, Adrian (Talia Shire). However, during an exhibition match, Rocky's friend Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) is mercilessly beaten to death by hulking Russian newcomer Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren). Rocky vows payback against Drago and flies to Russia to train for a Christmas Day fight. Despite their different training methods, Rocky and Drago both wage a long and intense match. (Rocky IV 1986)
Recently retired boxer Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) falls on hard times after his accountant mismanages his finances. He stages a comeback of sorts by mentoring fiery young boxer Tommy (Tommy Morrison), while also trying to mend his shaky relationship with his own son, Robert (Sage Stallone). These challenges prove to be at least as tough as any fight Rocky has faced in the ring. He wonders if he will be able to meet them and raise his arms in victory again. (Rocky V 1990)
Now long-retired, Rocky (Sylvester Stallone) runs a Philadelphia eatery and mourns the loss of his beloved wife, Adrian. Yearning to recapture a bit of his glory days, he plans to re-enter the ring for a few low-profile, local matches. All that changes when Rocky accepts a challenge to fight the world's reigning heavyweight champion, Mason "the Line" Dixon (Antonio Tarver). (Rocky VI 2006)
That's a lot of Rocky... The ideas for the films seemed quite exhausted, so even when I did hear that they were following the franchise with instead the continuity of Apollo, I was a bit afraid. I didn't know what they could possibly do, and I really didn't want them to mess up Apollo's blood line, but the didn't and with the personification of Michael B. Jordan, who really brought Adonis Creed to life, the studio did a great job.
What wasn't so good:
Well... what indeed wasn't so good? There were so many opportunities to fail, but they really didn't. They got Adonis' temperament perfect, love life, distinguished our generation from Rocky's. That's why I reckon I rated the film so high, not necessarily because they got everything right, but more because they didn't get anything wrong!
What I would have liked to see:
Well, where this is realistically the start of a new franchise, I don't know what I was expecting to see. But thinking about it, I wouldn't have minded seeing a bit of a Lion King type homage to Apollo.
And finally, connection to a wider universe;
I think my final point would of covered that, but I like the fact that it has little to no connection with the wider universe... I mean, Sylvester Stallone never seems to let things go, with that many movies to one franchise, same with expendables, it's hard to fit new ideas into old franchises, but Creed was the perfect feel of fresh and nostalgic themes.
So, favourite Rocky film?
https://moviepilot.com/reviews/3802270 << official movie review:).