Creed III is the third movie in the Creed series and the ninth addition to the Rocky franchise. It also marks the directorial debut of lead actor Michael B. Jordan, but with Keenan Coogler and Zach Baylin’s screenplay carrying a significant amount of baggage from its predecessors. Despite this, Creed III is an enjoyable sports drama.
Adonis Creed (played by Jordan) is living a life of luxury, having achieved his professional goals and starting a beautiful family with his wife Bianca (Tessa Thompson) and daughter Amara (Mila Davis-Kent). However, his peaceful existence is disrupted when his childhood friend Damian Anderson (Jonathan Majors) unexpectedly reappears, and his intentions remain unclear. Despite Adonis’ happy family life and success in boxing, he is burdened by a troubled past that still haunts him. He tries to keep it concealed, but it is on the verge of resurfacing. Adonis and Damian share a common dream, and they are on the brink of competing for the ultimate prize.
The concepts of companionship, allegiance, and the definition of achievement
Creed III delves into Adonis’ childhood, offering insight into some of the choices he makes as an adult. Through a few time jumps, the movie presents glimpses of how his upbringing shapes his current life, with Damian acting as a sort of reminder of his past. Coogler and Baylin’s script places this element at the film’s heart, with everything else revolving around it.
Adonis’ family relationships seem ideal at first glance, but Damian’s reappearance exposes underlying tensions. His mother becomes suspicious of Damian, unearthing past traumas that threaten to strain their bond. Meanwhile, Bianca tries to break through Adonis’ emotional walls, unaware of his troubled history. Admiring her father’s strength both in the family and the boxing ring, Amara is affected by his profession in both positive and negative ways. Creed III highlights the impact of Adonis’ boxing career on every aspect of his personal life, but he must apply some of the skills he learned in the ring to overcome other challenges. Adonis clarifies that the sport isn’t solely about violence but requires timing and concentration, both of which contribute to the underdog stories interwoven in the plot.
The boxing trilogy of ‘Creed III’ concludes as a valuable addition
Michael B. Jordan’s ‘Creed III’ strikes a balance between drama and action spectacle, with each boxing sequence carrying significant weight. The cinematography and sound design work in unison to make each blow seem impactful, leading to a thrilling finale that relies on its intensity. Michael B. Jordan takes on the titular character, but his portrayal feels slightly restrained, especially when compared to the powerhouse performance of Jonathan Majors as Damian. Majors delivers a stunning performance, skillfully balancing the film’s dramatic elements with the intense boxing scenes. Meanwhile, Tessa Thompson shines as the heart of the sequel, seamlessly driving the plot’s emotional depth.
Coogler and Baylin’s screenplay for ‘Creed III‘ adheres to the conventional elements of boxing dramas from the past, with an abundance of foreshadowing that somewhat reduces the tension in the story. However, the noticeable absence of Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky, without any indication of his whereabouts, creates a sense of detachment. Although Creed III’s script may be sparse, the film stands out as a formidable finale to the trilogy with plenty of intense boxing action. The dramatic stakes, both inside and outside the ring, effectively keep the audience engaged. Overall, it’s a commendable directorial debut from Jordan, offering a glimpse of his potential behind the camera.