It was a battle that was 33 year in the making. Creed and Drago concluded their feud in an epic battle but this time through their sons. In the sequel to Warner Bros Pictures critically-acclaimed Creed, we witnessed a fight that had us gripping the edge of our seats. Bingers, get ready to find out how the film may just be the best action film of 2018!
The Fight of the Times
In Creed, we saw Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) grow to become the man that his father Apollo is. With the help of his then girlfriend, Bianca (Tessa Thompson), he developed to become someone more than his dad. He found out who he truly is- a fighter. While the first movie laid down the groundwork for the character, it still left some holes waiting to be explored. And that we did explore in the highly-anticipated sequel.
A few years after the events of the first movie, Creed proved himself to be worthy of his father’s legacy. While following his steps, he also paved one for himself. But some things from the past are meant to come back and haunt people. In Creed’s case, that is the legacy of the fighter who delivered the blows that killed his father.
I may not have the widest knowledge about the Rocky franchise but this plot explores the events of Rocky IV in which Ivan Drago and Apollo Creed fought in one historic fight. Creed II graciously took the new audiences’ knowledge about the films into consideration. As they explored the plots from the past, they peppered the journey with hints and flashbacks that made keeping up with the present and the past an easy one. At the same time, the mirroring of most events heightened the inevitable match between the fighters’ sons.
The Duality of Humanity
One great thing that I love about the storytelling of Creed II was how it painted the fighters as more than just these hulking creatures. Deep down their brute force is a heart and soul driven by passion, motivation, and responsibilities to their families. Viktor Drago was setup to be the villain on the early part of the film but as the story progressed, I grew to develop a sense of sympathy for him. And that is when I came to a realization that neither Adonis and Viktor are the bad guys, instead they are pawns. But hey, that is the harsh reality behind the sport.
While Creed is at the focal point of the narrative, the film also shared it with Drago. This move is a brilliant one as it showed how nuanced each characters are. And of course, with this film being an extension of the Rocky Cinematic Universe, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) also had a subplot of his own. In a touching deja vu moment, Rocky saw himself reliving his last moments with Apollo. He was there to build up a broken down fighter.
Creed II may not be as suave and as fine as the first movie but it still remains as one of the most-gripping and stylish action movies that I saw this year. It did not waste time on unnecessary subplots as it focused instead on strengthening the characters as it takes us, the audience, to a gripping and punch-in-the-air conclusion. As a film about boxing, and I am gonna say this as a kickboxer myself, the action sequences in Creed II are deliciously executed! I sent out “ooh!”s and “oomph!”s with the punches that landed. It is more than just the title and the brawl. I love how it explored the humanity of the players and the people surrounding them. I felt the punches and the soul. Creed II is an overall triumph.
Director: Steven Caple Jr.
Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Michael B. Jordan, Tessa Thompson
Binge-level: 5 out of 5 stars