Creed II doesn’t make the step up to awards quality, which it seems to be at least its partial aim
Boxing films are absolutely their own genre of film making. Other features focusing on separate sports simply cannot reach the heights, or attain the backing, that boxing manages to secure when producing a feature film. Yet that isn’t without reason; Boxing films are often some of the most raw, powerful, and gut-punching dramas around, regardless of what their story line actually focuses on.
Creed II picks up from the first film, a continuation of the Rocky Balboa film series, instead detailing the fights of Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan), the son of famed boxer Apollo Creed, killed in the ring by Russian fighter Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren). Now, challenged by Drago’s son Viktor (Florian Munteanu), Adonis must face his fears, and fight for his own pride against an incredibly personal opponent.
Largely, the film is high on drama and quality, but misses on out many key elements that would make it inherently individual. Creed II doesn’t come across as a film that wants to be different, more as one that knows it isn’t and tries to just prove its worth by comparison.
It features an emotional lead from Michael B. Jordan, and his performance goes a long way to giving the film a real sense of power; But interestingly, much of that is taken away by poor uses of some of cinemas most key elements.
The score, specifically during the final fight, is particularly alienating, taking away from the raw emotion boxing films almost universally look to thrive upon. It only manages to bring attention away from the power, rather than immerse the audience into it.
The story is often so-so, with too much constructed drama overbearing the natural flow of the film, as well as playing host to an impossibly short montage sequence, supposedly returning Adonis Creed to full strength and full power. It misses its chance with a whole host of poor story choices, but expecting this to be an incredible film was always going to be too much to ask.
Creed II doesn’t make the step up to awards quality, which it seems to be at least its partial aim, but does supply strong themes and continues a popular story line. Very little is different or particularly special, but often, that’s all the audience asks a film to be.
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