Cert: 12A / 133 mins / Dir. Ryan Coogler / Trailer
So there's A Young Man right, and he hits people a lot because he never had any real parents and that makes him both sad and angry, then he finds out that His Dead Dad used to hit people a lot as well, only he did it for a job where he got money and won special belts! So The Young Man thinks "why am I working in an office and living with my fabulously rich and kindly stepmother when I could be hitting people for a living?" and he travels to the other side of America to live in a largely unfurnished flat and meet The Old Man who used to hit His Dead Dad, also for a job but also because they both enjoyed it. And The Young Man says to The Old Man 'hey, maybe you could train me to hit people like My Dead Dad used to?' and The Old Man says 'no way kid, I don't do that stuff no more!', but then The Old Man realises who The Young Man is (plus, The Young Man tells him) and remembers he's in A Boxing Film so he'd better do it anyway. So The Old Man trains The Young Man to hit people properly (not like he'd been doing it previously), with a view to getting paid for hitting people and winning special belts.
In the meanwhile, The Young Man meets The Girl One who makes music for a living which sounds like beige wallpaper with a drum machine, and it turns out she's slowly going deaf, which is obviously not a good thing, but at least means there'll be one less person who has to hear the music she makes for a living. The Girl One is fine with The Young Man hitting people and they start going out. Then An English Man With A Beard phones up The Old Man and says "I hear you're training The Young Man who's the son of His Dead Dad? Well, I'm the trainer for The Bad Man and I think they should have a hitting-competition because of a) pride, b) money and c) fun" and The Old Man says "no way man, he won't do that stuff!" but then he remembers he's in A Boxing Film so he'd better do it anyway.
Then, when The Old Man is training The Young Man, he starts being sick a bit over the side of the ring which in a film means he has The Cancer, and the doctors are like "it won't be easy, but we can probably fix that" and at first The Old Man is like "no way doc, I got nothing left to live for anyways!" until he remembers that he has got stuff to live for (plus, his friends tell him), so he decides to get the medical treatment and make The Young Man do his hitting-training by sprinting around a working hospital and doing shadow boxing while medical staff are walking nearby. Then it's nearly the time for the hitting-competition so The Young Man and The Old Man go to Liverpool in England (The Girl One comes over later, too) since that's where The Bad Man is from because a) British people are evil, b) Scousers are apparently even worse. There's a sort of party before the hitting-competition with people asking questions, and The Bad Man says a nasty thing about The Young Man's Dead Dad, which shows that they really don't like each other, to the point where they're prepared to hit each other for money.
Then it is the hitting-competition and the bell rings and The Young Man and The Bad Man start hitting each other. At one point The Young Man gets hit and falls down in slow-motion over the course of about five seconds, which means it was really hard. The Young Man lies still on the canvas floor for a few seconds while A Man In A Shirt counts with his voice, but then The Young Man remembers some things which happened earlier in the film (and also remembers he's in A Boxing Film) which makes him get right up again to continue hitting The Bad Man. They keep hitting each other until The Man In The Shirt says "that's enough hitting, now!" and a bell rings. Then, because neither of The Men are dead, someone else who we haven't met decides which of the men was the best at hitting since he's watched the whole thing*1. The Unseen Man decides that The Bad Man is the best hitter, and for a minute it's sad until The Bad Man comes over to The Young Man and says "your hitting's really rather good, much like your father's" and they make friends and it turns out that The Bad Man was only pretending to be a bad man because it more comfortably fits his sports-persona of enjoying hitting people. You see, we thought The Young Man had lost, but it turns out that he won as well (although not in any legally binding or monetary sense). Everyone is happy by this point.
Even The Young Man who didn't win a special belt.
The Young Man, The Old Man and The Girl one then return to America where the first two of those walk up some steps in about the hundredth lead-weight-reference to The Other Rocky Films.
They are happy. It is the end.
Some people leaving the cinema in front of me absolutely loved all this.
I shouldn't be able to be this bored while watching someone get punched in the face for two hours, surely..?
Other hitting films.
Oh, if you like.
…continually reference The Other Rocky Films? Sure.
Michael B Jordan's pretty great, I've got to say.
That all depends on how effusive you are after watching a children's drama for adults…
Well, technically it's a Level 1 since Creed features a scene with Rocky and the gang watching Skyfall (for no reason at all, admittedly). We see a clip from the tube-crash scene, so technically Creed features an appearance from Daniel 'Stormtrooper' Craig.
But for those of you who say that doesn't count? Level 2: Creed stars Sylvester Stallone of course, who clunked his way through Expendables 3 alongside Harrison 'Solo' Ford…
*1 And this is the second boxing flick within a year where the audience spends two hours watching the underdog claw his way up from the gutter and into the floodlit ring of destiny, face off his opponent and his personal demons, pour his heart, his soul and his bleeding face into twelve rounds of bodily combat… only to get to a draw at the end and have the result decided by some blokes sitting behind a desk. It's a total cop-out for a sporting event, and that cheapness certainly isn't lessened for a film. You wouldn't sit through The Great Escape or The Empire Strikes Back only to switch over to an adjudication panel at the end for their opinion, would you?
• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
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