“Creed:” Rocky for a new generation

Director: Ryan Coogler

Rated: PG-13

Runtime: 136 minutes

Release: Nov. 25, 2015

A new contender has entered the ring: “Creed.” A knockout of a film, “Creed” will have you on the edge of your seat throughout the entire movie. It follows the story of Adonis Creed, played by Michael B. Jordan (Fruitvale Station, Chronicle), the illegitimate child of boxing legend Apollo Creed. Adonis has ambitions of becoming a famous boxer just like his father, but he doesn’t want use his father’s name to gain his fame. So with the help of Rocky Balboa, played by Sylvester Stallone (Rambo series, The Expendables), who fought against his father now working as Adonis’s trainer, Adonis is ready pave his own legacy.

Michael B. Jordan shows off his acting chops in way we’ve never seen, shining in this role and showing that he will be a heavy hitter in Hollywood for years to come.

Sylvester Stallone gives a performance that could considered his best one to date. Stallone, who usually gives off a macho vibe of a man who could never be broken, portrays Rocky in a weaker state considering that he is older and almost unrecognizable from his younger self. In “Creed,” you see him as a man who has been around the block and now offers advice to Adonis. 

The movie is directed by Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station). Coogler shows such tremendous detail throughout the film. His ability to catch every detail in a scene shows the craftsmanship that Coogler gives behind the camera. Coogler’s direction with this film feels energized, this can been seen in the training montages before Adonis’s last big fight.

A huge highlight of this film has to be the continuous one-take shots during arena fights. The fights could be considered the best parts of the film, as you feel that you are actually watching the fight. The movie shows off the body damage that boxers are suffering and it feels raw. There are no edits between punches in each fight that shows the boxer clean then bruised up, you actually see the progression of being beaten to a pulp.

The soundtrack, composed by Ludwig Göransson, will tug at your heartstrings. This is especially true during the major fight scenes and the incredible training montage, filling the audience with a sense of world empowerment.

Overall, this film is the biggest under the radar surprise of the year. I can’t recommend this movie enough. The last fight in this movie had me at the edge of seat and then jumping out of it during the climax.

Grade: A