Creed Review: More Than Another Rocky Sequel

There’s an old saying that goes ‘You can’t go home again’.  But in the case of Creed, the Rocky franchise’s latest film you can.

Who would have thought that back when Rocky first hit the box office in 1976 that a boxing movie would become such a phenomenon?  The movie turned Sylvester Stallone into a household name and put the City of Philadelphia on the map, making the steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum a world-renowned landmark.

The six Rocky sequels never quite matched the original’s appeal.  Granted, each movie had something, be it good or bad.  But they always seemed as though they struggled to capture Rocky’s charm.  What makes Creed different is that it is not trying to be another Rocky sequel.  It’s almost like introducing audiences to the Rocky legacy for the first time using a new boxing hero.

That hero is the love-child of Apollo Creed, Adonis Johnson played by Michael B. Jordan.   Although Adonis never knew his famous boxer father, he is drawn to boxing.  Fortunately, he has Rocky Balboa to serve as a mentor, coach and surrogate father.

Since Adonis was adopted by Apollo’s widow Mary Anne (Phylicia Rashad), he has the opportunity to get out of the group homes and experience a life of privilege. However, his time in the group homes have also made him a street kid.  So, Adonis struggles with two identities and a wonder lust for fighting.

Creed is Adonis’ story with Stallone’s Rocky serving as his guide.  Michael B. Jordan is an actor capable of playing the nuances and challenges of the character.  He got his acting start on the soap All My Children and went on to play in the critically acclaimed television series Friday Night Lights.  His most recent movie role was as shooting victim Oscar Grant in Fruitvale Station.

Creed is a powerful movie dealing with the complications of a boxer’s life.  But it touches the heart and makes the movie goer care about Adonis and in turn his relationship with Rocky.

It is certain that come Academy Award time, Creed will be a serious contender.

Creed is now playing.  Check local listings for time and theaters.

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