MMT Quick Review of CREED III

I wanted the characters in my film to face their disagreements while making a statement about humanity and its nuances, with empathy. How we handle and communicate our emotions is a part of our exploration of our inner self.

Michael B. Jordan, director and star of CREED III

The third installment of the “Creed” franchise finds its titular character in the battle of his life – facing an opponent that he’s long since left behind, hoping to escape part of his undesirable past while confronting a once close companion that is both his enemy and strongest contender.

In CREED III, the directorial debut of Michael B. Jordan who also stars, Adonis Creed has grown into a confident pro fighter who’s become the heavyweight champion of the world. Preparing for his retirement, he’s a successful businessman, fostering, training and promoting matches for the next generation of champions, a doting husband to Bianca Creed (Tessa Thompson) who’s a sought-after songwriter/producer, and loving father to his daughter Amara (newcomer Mila Davis-Kent in her debut role). When his old friend Damian Anderson (Jonathan Majors) is released from jail and seeks out the life he believes is rightfully his, Adonis must confront old and new challenges that lead him to the battle of his career.

I must admit, I wasn’t as impressed with the emotional beats in this installment as I was the first two “Creed” films, however there were several things I felt this film accomplished that made me reconsider why I wasn’t as in love as I was with the first two.

First off, the fans of the series already know that Bianca’s hearing and Amara’s deafness would be a part of the storyline, however I enjoyed that the film displays the humanity and relatability of the Creed family and their experiences without having it overblown. An example of this would be how Damian is introduced to Amara. There was no pulling to the side or extra explanations given. Adonis simply translated Amara’s welcome to Damian and vice versa, while demonstrating how Damian could respond on his own. This scene was very reminiscent of 2022’s “Saloum,” which had a major character who was deaf but it wasn’t overexplained and the film functioned with everyone operating accordingly, again reflecting the humanity that many of us crave to witness on screen.

Next, even with the resentment and animosity between Adonis and Damian, the journey of their friendship, the ups and downs and the expressions of what transpired from each was a wonderful thing to watch on the big screen. We don’t get to witness raw and vulnerable emotions/actions between Black men on screen as often, and this is always a worthy thing to witness. And with two powerhouses like Jordan and Majors it’s really powerful – although, I will say I thought Damian’s display on the beach was the corniest thing (this is a non-spoiler site, but you’ll know it when you see it).

I also thought the fight choreography was by far some of the best of the franchise, and Jordan’s decision to do a stripped down round in Adonis and Damian’s boxing match – audience and sound of crowd removed – was perfection. And their juxtaposed training montages were pure fire – kudos to Jordan’s keen eye, Fight Choreographer Mark R. Miscione, Boxing Technical Advisor Robert Sale, all the stunt doubles and performers and definitely Fitness Trainer Corey Calliet (because those wanting the goods will definitely get what they came for)!

The music in this film is also top notch, with a remarkable score from Joseph Shirley, who also scored season three of the hit Disney+ show “The Mandalorian,” and a soundtrack that boasts hits on constant and features artists like J. Cole, Sir, and Ari Lennox to name a few.

In sum, “Creed III” is definitely a worthy watch, even if I don’t believe it hit all the emotional notes it strived, and truly serves all the big screen wants many in the audience will come to see. And, at the time of this writing, it is the highest grossing installment in the franchise with a current opening total at 51 million plus and rising. I rate it 3.5 out of 5 on the MMTrometer.

CREED III opened in theaters everywhere March 3.

Until next thought, Thomasena


1 Comment

  1. I loved the last movie, and this one didn’t feel real and sincere to me. I felt like they were “phoning it in.” I thought it was just okay.

    Liked by 1 person

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