Movie Review – Creed II

Movie Review - Creed III really enjoyed this movie. I had very high expectations and lots of excitement when I walked into the theater, and I think this movie delivered on all of those expectations. I think this movie kept a lot of new fans from Creed I, but  also tapped into the older fan-base from Rocky IV.

This movie was similar to the Rocky movies, but is trying to become its own thing. We can see that in the scenes when Rocky doesn’t stand in the spotlight with Adonis. I think that’s a good indicator that the directors and writers are trying to make a separation between this second generation and the parent movies of Rocky.

I think what makes a Rocky movie so memorable has a lot to do with what’s happening outside of the boxing storyline. From the proposal, to the pregnancy, to the early fatherhood challenges, I think this movie had a lot of moments that touched the hearts of the audience.

I think the part about Creed II that I had never seen in a previous Rocky movie was the portrayal of the opponent, which in this case was Viktor and Ivan Drago. The movie starts out with scenes of them, instead of scenes of Adonis and Rocky. I think throughout the movie there were very important scenes of Viktor and Ivan that help the audience understand what this fight meant to them. For me, it made me feel compassion for Viktor and Ivan Drago. For Ivan, this fight was his way of redeeming himself from the defeat against Rocky.

In this movie, we see that there was a lot of fall out due to that loss. Ivan experienced separation from his country, his wife, and all those who supported him before he lost against Rocky. It seems that Viktor was raised with a singular goal in mind–redeem the honor of his father and win back his mother into their lives. I truly did feel for Ivan Drago because this fight was more about him than it was about Viktor. Viktor had no personal motivations for this fight except those of his father. I think the reason this movie decided to show empathy towards Viktor and Ivan is because they are not the real antagonists of the film. The real antagonist of the film is Viktor’s mother and Ivan’s former wife. Towards the end of the movie, Ivan decides that the life of his son is more important than the support of his country.

Overall this was a great movie; I like the alternative views it had and I’m excited to see what’s in store for Adonis Creed in the future. I’m also interested to see what is in store several years down the line for his daughter–Amara Creed. I think people believe she won’t be a boxer due to being born deaf, but based on the scene with her watching Adonis return to the boxing gym, I don’t believe that will stop her.

Overall: I think, as usual, both the acting of Michael B. Jordan and Sylvester Stallone were great. I would recommend this movie to anyone. I’m a true Rocky convert. It’s worth it to see it in theaters.

Grade: A-

About The Peetimes: It was easy to find 4 good Peetimes that didn’t interfere with the great boxing scenes or the relevant story line.

There are no extra scenes during, or after, the end credits of Creed II. (What we mean by Anything Extra.)

Virgin Movie Binge Reviews – Rocky Balboa and Creed 1

Continuing our Binge watch of Rocky and Creed Movies with a viewing virgin! Enjoy!

Rocky Balboa

Rocky Balboa occurs several years after Rocky V. Rocky’s son has grown up and moved out of the house. Adrian died of cancer and Rocky visits her grave every day with Paulie. Paulie is the only person who is still around, but he’s getting tired of the usual routine of visiting Adrian’s grave. Rocky also owns a restaurant called Adrian’s. I think this is his only remnant of the past. Inside the restaurant he has photos of his previous fights and of his family.

This was a sad movie to watch because it seems as though Rocky is pretty lonely without boxing, Adrian, and his son. His son doesn’t come around often. I think there are some lingering feelings from Rocky V that affected their relationship.  Rocky’s son would rather not hang around Rocky due to several reasons. 1) Rocky reminds Rocky Jr. about Adrian, who is dead. 2) Rocky Jr. is resentful of Rocky because of how it affected him growing up, and continues to affect him now. Being the son of Rocky means that there are very large shoes to fill and I don’t think Rocky Jr. ever lived up to those external expectations. In large part, I think that had to do with their relationship following Tommy Gunn. Rocky focused all of his time trying to relive his old life through Tommy, and never took the time to teach his own son how to box. I think the son and society feels that he isn’t really a Balboa if he can’t fight.

Rocky earns back his license to begin boxing on a local level again. He feels that he isn’t really living and boxing will allow him to feel alive again. As usual, something occurs that pulls Rocky back into the heavyweight champion boxing world. However, the premise in this case was poor. Rocky accepts a challenge to fight Mason Dixon, the current Heavyweight Champion. This came about when a computer simulation between Rocky and Mason deemed Rocky as the winner. Despite everyone being against the idea, Rocky proceeds with the fight and loses. In his heart, he really won because he proved to himself that he is still a worthy opponent.

Overall, I didn’t like this movie because Rocky didn’t go into the fight with a solid resolve. I did like that this fight brought Rocky and Rocky Jr. closer to having the bond that they both wish they always had. Though this was sweet — I don’t think it was enough to carry the movie.

Quiz  question: What can you count on to happen in a Rocky film?

Answer:

  1. Rocky runs up the stairs or a tall structure
  2. Rocky throws his fist in the air

  3. “Eye of The Tiger” or “Gonna Fly Now” plays

  4. Rocky gets beat up initially in his fights and then makes a come back

  5. All of the Above

  6. None of the Above

(Answer is E!)

Movie Grade: C

Creed

I initially watched Creed back when it first came out in 2015. As I mentioned at the beginning of my Rocky binge journey, I didn’t know much about Rocky. After watching all of the Rocky films, and then rewatching Creed, I have a greater understanding and appreciation for this movie. When I first watched Creed, I didn’t  comprehend the significance of the title–Creed. I think I would have been so much more excited to see this movie if I was a long time Rocky fan, because this movie comes 30 years after Apollo Creed dies. So I would have thought to myself, what could this movie be about??

Now that I’ve seen Rocky, I have all of this information that I can apply to this movie. Specific scenes are more meaningful to me and jokes are funnier. Specifically when Rocky gives Adonis Creed the American flag shorts for his fight. I understand that those were the style of shorts that Apollo Creed fought most of his fights in.

This movie reminded me of the original Rocky because it offered a lot of character development to understand the character of Adonis Creed. Adonis Creed has characteristics of both Rocky and Apollo. Specifically, he grew up poor and an orphan, until he was adopted, where he began living a much more lavish lifestyle. This lavish upbringing wasn’t enough for him, because he still believed his calling was to be a boxer. I think like a true boxer, he was willing to give up everything in order to pursue his passion. I also think Adonis Creed is what Rocky Jr. could have been, if he wanted to make a name for himself outside of being Rocky’s son. Adonis grew up knowing who his father was, and I think that was his reasoning for becoming a boxer; however he wanted to make a name for himself that was not associated with Apollo.

I really like this movie, because I think this is who Rocky was meant to train. To me, this movie feels like a redo of Rocky V.  Rocky gets the opportunity to train the son Creed never knew he had, and in some ways it’s as though he has his friend back. I also like that this movie didn’t focus too heavily on Rocky, but kept true to its name and allowed Adonis Creed to be the star.  Though this is a continuation of the Rocky series, I feel like it’s also its own movie because it didn’t follow the patterns of Rocky exactly, and in fact broke many of the things that we’re used to seeing in Rocky. For instance, many of the answers from the Rocky quiz would not apply to this movie.  Nonetheless, this was a great movie and I am very very very excited to see Creed II, especially knowing what I know from Rocky IV.

Movie Grade:  B+

Thanks for sticking around for my first-time viewing of the entire Rocky franchise! I look forward to seeing Creed II tonite! My final review will be posted soon, after I add the Peetimes (of course).

Virgin Watch Movie Reviews — Rocky 1 and 2

Virgin Movie Binge Reviews – Rocky 3 and 4

Here’s our original review when Creed first came out: 

Movie Review – Creed