By Gerrel Sayles, Contributor
Taking place three years after the first Creed, Creed II follows Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan), who has now won numerous bouts, as he captures the WBC World Heavyweight Championship. In addition, his relationship with Bianca Taylor (Tessa Thompson) continues to grow.
For fans of the Rocky series that have been wondering what happened to Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren) after his loss in “Rocky IV,” “Creed II” gives them the answer: Drago became an outcast in his country, resulting in him spending the last 33 years preparing his son to become a better boxer than he was. His son, Viktor (Florian Munteanu), only knows one thing: boxing.
To get the ball rolling, Ivan and his promoter go to the media to hype up the fight that boxing fans have been waiting for: Adonis vs. Viktor. What makes this fight so anticipated is the fact that Ivan killed Adonis’ father, Apollo, in a match that set forth the story of “Rocky IV.”
The film does an amazing job of illustrating Adonis’ underdog story and how he overcomes multiple obstacles to obtain his goal. The overall plot was detailed and very effective, with a lot of background on the characters and reasons as to why each fighter needs to win the fight. Adonis has to win to avenge his father’s death and prove to the world that he is the best. Meanwhile, Viktor must not only win in order to restore the Soviet Union’s name, but to bring respect back to his family’s name after his father lost to Rocky Balboa in 1985.
Additionally, the film does an effective job of showing the intensity of boxing, with skull-crushing hits to the face that elicit audible gasps from the crowd. The edge-of-your-seat action is made even more intense with each blow, as audiences anticipate the end of the fight.
Ultimately, “Creed II” is a great addition to the story that was told 33 years ago. It answered any questions that fans of the series may have had about “Rocky IV.” In all, this is a must-see film, even if you haven't watched the other “Rocky” films. Watching this film right after “Creed” shows you Adonis’ growth, along with a great display of boxing.