Sunday, December 20, 2015

Creed (2015)

IMDb plot summary: The former World Heavyweight Champion Rocky Balboa serves as a trainer and mentor to Adonis Johnson, the son of his late friend and former rival Apollo Creed.
Directed by Ryan Coogler. Starring Michael B. Jordan, Sylvester Stallone, Tessa Thompson, and Phylicia Rashad.

(Spoilers ahead.)

I admit, the only other Rocky movie I've seen is the original one, but I liked it a lot and liked this one a lot too. It manages to do what sports movies often try to do but frequently fail: It centers the sport in the characters. The original did the same thing, and so even though boxing itself isn't interesting to me, I was strongly cheering for the characters. Adonis is a great character, and his interactions with Rocky are funny and moving. The cancer subplot, which in a less well-written movie would schmaltz the story to death, is dealt with intelligently and in a way that is consistent with the characters we've been given. The big boxing match at the end is truly exciting, even for people like me who typically could not care less about sporting events of any kind. The movie intelligently takes its time fleshing out its characters and fleshing them out well, so when the focus finally shifts to The Big Fight, we're already invested. Well done.

3.5 stars.

How it entered my Flickchart:
Creed > The Circus
Creed < Eat Pray Love
Creed > Laura
Creed > The Green Mile
Creed < Bend It Like Beckham
Creed < The Thief of Bagdad (1924)
Creed > The Happening
Creed > Lord of the Flies
Creed > Ikiru
Creed > You Can Count on Me
Creed > Rabbit Hole
Final spot: #713 out of 2402.

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