Friday, April 12, 2024

Michael B. Jordan reshapes the “Rocky” universe with “Creed III”


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Featured Graphic by Destiny Mizell

Story by Larry Rincon

“I need you to let go of your fear. let go of the guilt. let go of what ever was and walk into what is”

— Little Duke in “Creed III”

“Creed III” is the latest addition to the “Creed” series started by Ryan Coogler back in 2015. The
film follows Adonis Creed, played by Michael B. Jordan, as he reconnects with a long lost friend
named Damien Anderson, played by Jonathan Majors. Tensions are high between these two friends turned foes. The film’s prominent themes are family, forgiveness and rivalry.

The fight scenes make “Creed III” different from its predecessors. Whereas the boxing matches in the past make the audience feel like spectators of the matches, “Creed III” breaks that format by putting the audience in the fight with the characters. Jordan adds a theatrical spin to them by incorporating his love for anime in the fight scenes. The notable cross-blow between Adonis and Dame happens in many iconic anime series, such as “Naruto”. The fast movements of the characters slow down so the audience can witness each impact. In one fight where Damien punches Adonis in the abdomen, the
screen shows the ripples through his body and sends sweat flying.

Building off of that, the final fight scene includes a portion where Adonis and Dame block out the
rest of their surroundings and the two of them are the only ones present in their fight. 10 rounds
of their match become condensed in a short montage of exchanged blows as jail bars keep
them inside the ring. This is in most animes because it only focuses on the showdown between the two

Another great aspect is the way Jordan increased representation and diversity among characters.
For example, deaf representation is very rare, and being able to see sign language used in protagonist’s family is important. It was also nice to see a Latino character as Creed’s successor for the first half of the movie. The mixture of Spanish dialogue fit nicely with the film’s structured.

I believe that removing the subtitles would have been more inclusive. Removing subtitles can make other languages feel equal to English. In a country where multiple languages surround us, that type of respect in cinema is important. Even with this small critique “Creed III” manages to be a really good start for Michael B. Jordan as a director.

The “Rocky” universe has come a long way from the underdog story it started as. It turned that same underdog story upside down. While Adonis’s story feels pretty complete with this latest installment, it will be interesting to see if another character steps up to build their own legacy.

With the way Amara, Adonis’s daughter played by Mila Davis-Kent, has started to show interest in boxing, maybe the next story will explore a character who manages their disability in their career.

If someone ever takes the mantle of the next “Rocky” universe film, hopefully it’s Jordan directing the next story.

To contact Lifestyles Editor Destiny Mizell, email For more news, visit, or follow us on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines or on Twitter at @Sidelines_News.

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