“One step, one punch, one round at a time.”CreedPic

Unflashy and undramatic, Ryan Coogler’s Balboa breakout refrains from the glitz and glamor, focussing on the human side of a violent world. Unfolding the story of Apollo Creed’s son, Adonis, Creed highlights the real semi-mundanity of the boxing world. It is a story of a man finding his self and life in the absence of a male role model. Adonis feels wronged, slighted, pained by the world, regardless of the material wealth he bathes in. It is of great acclaim that Coogler has managed to create a character so tender and heartfelt in a context that would have been very easy to seem simply angsty and arrogant.

This is a result of Coogler’s choice to understate several key themes. The training isn’t oversold, Donny’s troubled past isn’t exaggerated and the struggles he meets aren’t overpowering. Even seemingly overwhelming elements rightfully kept secondary to Adonis’ personal journey.

This lack of exaggeration creates a tangible reality. Donny’s success and its speed reflect Creed’s cinematic past, but this is no carbon-copy. Donny’s rise is suitably cynical and is tinged with suspicion and distrust. A legitimate tension is the result; one that will set your heart racing.

Creed is not innovative but it is a near-perfect incarnation of what this reboot should have been. Creed is not just a worthy successor to the Rocky masthead, not just the best boxing film of the decade but one of the greatest sports films of the modern era.

★★★★ 1/2

Header courtesy of Creed, image courtesy of utbgeek.



8 thoughts on “Creed

  1. Thought this was spectacularly average – watched this last night. Purely for the Rocky nostalgia crowd, with many aspects of the story completely undeveloped and unnecessary. e.g. Why was she partially deaf?

    The performances were great however, and much like Fruitvale it’s fantastic to watch Michael B Jordan on screen.

    But while it is leaps and bounds better than Southpaw, I just didn’t rate it that highly.

    Nice review though, cheers for sharing your thoughts.

    • I think she was going deaf to show her being unfazed by a paralell struggle to Donny’s whilst doing the one thing she loves though she too knows it won’t last forever. I thought it did much more than rehash nostalgia. I thought it kept the bare framework of the past and filled it with a truly moving new human story. Totally agree that it blows Southpaw out the water though! And thanks for sharing yours!

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  3. So happy that this film is getting the plaudits it deserves. I was blown away by it as I wasn’t expecting much from the film at all. It seemed to capture the Rocky magic again and made me optimistic for the future movies in the franchise.

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