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MOVIE REVIEW: FTN reviews Creed 2

November 30th, 2018 by Irwin Fletcher Comments

Creed II (12a)
Directed: Steven Caple Jr
Starring: Michael B Jordan, Sylvester Stallone & Tessa Thompson
Running time: 2hr 10min

Under the tutelage of Rocky Balboa, light heavyweight contender Adonis Creed faces off against Viktor Drago, son of Ivan Drago.

Set approximately three years after the first Creed, Creed II takes us straight back in to the lives of Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) and Bianca (Tessa Thompson) and where they are in their new lives.

Adonis is now aiming to be world champion in the light heavyweight division, still mentored by the one and only, Rocky Balboa (Stallone).

Then comes the new addition to the franchise, Viktor Drago, son of Ivan Drago (Dolph Lungren), the man who killed Apollo Creed, father of Adonis, in Rocky IV.

Ivan is training Viktor to, you guessed it, challenge Adonis. But Adonis now has more going on in his life than he did three years ago: his girlfriend is pregnant and they are trying to settle down. They even talk about moving back home, making the decision for Adonis to take the fight difficult… but, we have the movie, so we all know what happens.

What sets Creed II apart from Creed, and even the Rocky movies, is the depth.

As an audience we get to see a very different side to the Drago family, who were previously painted as almost comic book villains in Rocky IV but here we get a human side to them, especially when, in a tense conversation, Ivan tells Rocky what exactly was taken from him when he lost against Rocky.

The movie focuses on the father and son aspect of life, leading to some much-needed emotional and well-acted scenes.  That’s not to say Creed II doesn’t steal some of the formula of what made Rocky so well loved, it absolutely does.

We, of course, get some exciting training montages with cliché music playing, but let’s be honest, we’d be disappointed if we didn’t.

Jordan proves once again that he is one of the most talented actors around today; delivering the physical requirements of the role, while also giving a career-best emotional performance.

Stallone also shines, but how couldn’t he, playing the character he was born to play?

Stallone was the scene stealer in the first Creed, but it was refreshing to have Jordan stealing the movie completely this time round.

Thomson is great, portraying a character who has to balance supporting her partner as he trains for the biggest fight of his life along with the pressures of raising a child.

But there are some negatives. Creed II isn’t without its flaws.

If you’re a big Rocky fan, and remember the previous movies, you may have a few questions. I feel like Rocky Balboa (Rocky VI), doesn’t exist in this universe. Rocky VI sees Robert, Rocky’s son, all grown up and making a life for himself. By the end of Rocky VI, they are both on great terms, with his son even helping Rocky train for his fight against Mason ‘The Line’ Dixon and Creed 2 basically forgets all of this.

The other problem lies in the last 45 minutes of the movie: the pacing for the first two acts is perfect, but when the movie knocks it up a gear it feels rushed.

Now, I know scenes have been cut from the movie, one scene in particular that I was really looking forward to, so, who knows? Maybe we will get an extended edition when it comes to home release?

At the end of the day, if you are a fan of Rocky and Creed, you will love this movie… but, if you’re not… nah, kidding, you’ll probably still really enjoy it.

4 out of 5 Nerds

I'm an LA journalist who really lives for his profession. I have also published work as Jane Doe in various mags and newspapers across the globe. I normally write articles that can cause trouble but now I write for FTN because Nerds are never angry, so I feel safe.