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movie review: CREED

(No, I’m not talking about that shitty band.)

I went into this movie with moderate expectations when I saw the trailers, but I didn’t expect this to completely surpass those expectations by watching it twice in theaters! Yes my friends. CREED is the best movie I’ve seen this year by far.

While this is technically the sequel to the Rocky movies, Rocky isn’t the focus on this one. As the title implies, it’s Apollo Creed’s bastard son, Adonis (or Donnie). This movie is so damn good it cracked my top 10 movie list for me. The pacing, the acting, the music, the story, the surprising levels of cinematography – that long one shot fight scene, wow that was incredibly choreographed! It may be a boxing film on the surface but it’s a character driven story. Donnie wants to be a boxer while trying to be his own legacy but he doesn’t have a single person whom he calls family to support him, until he flies to to Philly and meets Rocky. Donnie is a likable character and you’ll learn to truly understand where he’s coming from as the movie progresses. Because of great acting performances by Michael B Jordan, the drama felt so real and humanizing. Let’s not forget about Stallone because, holy crap, this has got to be his best acting by far. The dialogues and facial expressions shown by playing his age really shows how effective his acting really is. Stallone definitely deserves a nomination for best supporting actor. Both characters are fighting in different ways – Donnie in boxing, and Rocky fighting his health issues as you’ll see half way through the movie. There was a really touching scene in the film where Donnie says “If I fight, you fight as well.” Their chemistry works so well together due to their relate-able struggles that seems like a father and son relationship. The themes of abandonment, loneliness, and having a sense of family have been explored here to its fullest. There were plenty of emotional scenes but the last half hour had me spilling. The scene where Rocky asks Donnie what he’s trying to prove during that final fight and Donnie replies, “That I’m not a mistake” really pulled the heart strings outta me. The female character Bianca ain’t no Adrian, but I like how she’s more than a typical movie love interest.

I have to note that you’ll get a somewhat of an answer of who won the private match of Rocky III at the end of that movie. Reason why I said somewhat is because when Donnie asks Rocky that, he takes a pause and says “he did” in a bittersweet tone. The scene still leaves an ambiguous feeling to the audience. Rocky may have said it for Donnie’s sake and/or his respect for Apollo. But who knows.

Now if there were some criticisms I had, that would be the Apollo’s original kids. I remember vividly back in Rocky III where Apollo mentions having children, but here in CREED, there’s absolutely no mention of them as if they’ve never existed. Other than that, it’s all I got.

If you’re a fan of Rocky movies, this is an absolute must! Even if you haven’t seen any of them, it does a good enough job standing out on its own. However, Rocky fans will definitely appreciate the movie better due to nostalgia bits here and there, but it’s not like in-your-face kind of nostalgia. It may be predictable storywise but the journey is what really matters. As for me, this movie is a day one buy. I’ve already bought the soundtrack. CREED definitely deserves everyone’s viewing at least once and a nomination for best picture.

Rating: 9.5/10

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