Ironically these days boxing movies are bigger than boxing itself. The Rocky franchise has been the benchmark for great boxing flicks since the 1970’s and remains that way decades later. Sure, there are good ones out there such as The Fighter, Southpaw, and Bleed For This, but Creed 2 steps back in the ring and shows them who the real champ is.
Creed 2 once again continues the story of Adonis Creed, Apollo Creed’s son. Apollo is now the world heavyweight champion, having just won the belt. He is on top with no opposition until Viktor Drago, son of Ivan Drago, the man that killed Apollo comes forward and challenges him for the title.
I will admit this movie is very formulaic. The first Creed movie follows the same story as the first Rocky and this one skips a few steps and jumps right to being the same (basically) as Rocky 4. Despite that though I personally believe and see this movie as being better than its predecessor. Not by much! But, still better… The first movie was very solid, and very good. It was a great introduction to the character of Apollo and eased us back in to the world of Rocky nicely. While Stallone was a show stealer in the first one, and still remains awesome in the this, I really feel like Michael B. Jordan’s performance and emotion fuel this movie well. Emotion is really what drives this film. I found myself overcome with it a few times and was surprised with just how serious it got.
The bad guys set it apart as well. Or, should I say “bad” guys. What is most surprising is that the villains are never really villiainized and are fleshed out and three dimensional characters. I wouldn’t say I liked them, but I was conflicted on wanting them to lose, and I definitely didn’t want to see them hurt.
All in all I would put this very close to the top, maybe even number two in this legendary eight film series. I hope they end it here as I feel Creed’s story has been told perfectly. I don’t need to see anymore and we run the risk of getting to the point Rocky did in his later films. I don’t want that for this, and it doesn’t deserve it.