Remember Rocky? The seminal flick about a boxer who beats the odds to become a champ inside and outside the ring? Well, who can forget with Sylvester Stallone as the leading man and a series of sequels in that franchise. The most interesting part is that it now has a spinoff currently showing entitled Creed.
Despite Creed being somehow related to the Rocky franchise in terms of how the main character - Adonis Johnson/Creed, played by Michael B. Jordan - is related to the original characters from the Rocky franchise, and despite the film's shameless reliance on plot formula, the film has a few twists up its sleeve and won't fail to give the audience a few surprises.
One of them is that you shouldn't expect the main character to fit the familiar mode of a blue collar working class boy who rises from extreme adversity. The other is that it is not the main character, who carries the movie's title, who will steal the show. It's actually the supporting actor who plays a much older Rocky Balboa, played by Stallone himself.
Vox lays out the summary plot: Creed focuses on Adonis "Donnie" Johnson as the illegitimate son of Apollo Creed, the former boxing heavyweight champion and also the opponent who went against Rocky, but eventually became Rocky's friend before Apollo died fighting in the ring.
The drama begins in 1998 when the viewer finds Donnie incarcerated in a Los Angeles youth facility when Creed's wife, Mary Anne decides to take him in. This undeserved break allows him to grow up in a life of privilege and money so much so that he distinguishes himself from the other fighters who call him "Hollywood" for coming from a sleeker part of LA.
The story then becomes an interesting journey about how this man's life is not really about comfort and privilege but about his way of trying to connect with a father whom he had never met. By living out a destiny that comes to him only through his DNA, Donnie gets to live vicariously through what his father had been all his life and thus make the much longed for connection.
Meanwhile Rocky Balboa, who makes his film appearance for the seventh time, acts as Donnie's conscience, to turn the aspirant from the consequences he has endured. It's all about appropriating the time and making the right choices before it's too late.