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A hard hitting blockbuster that will have you at the edge of your seat.

In case you have forgotten, a quick review of Rocky Balboa’s life. The story of Rocky is an iconic saga featuring Italian slugger Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) working his way up in the mean streets of Philadelphia; escaping the dead-end life working on the docks as a hired goon (debt collector). Rocky was often mocked for being simple minded, as he often refers to himself as being punchy, due to the toll of taking numerous punches to the head. Eventually Rocky is given an opportunity of a lifetime where he gets a title shot against the World Heavyweight Champion Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers). Apollo underestimating Rocky’s tenacity turned a exhibition style bout into an all out war.

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Throughout the films, where Rocky moves forward, Apollo Creed retires and eventually dies in a promotional exhibition bout against Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren). Fast forward past Rocky V (a movie many would like to forget), Sylvester Stallone resurrects his role in Rocky Balboa where he overcomes impossible measures to fight the current heavyweight champion in an exhibition to prove who is the greatest champion of all time. A fight that started by a virtual simulator that was broadcast on national television featuring Rocky Balboa beating Mason ‘The Line’ Dixon (real-life former Lightheavyweight Champion Antonio Tarver). Rocky was able to put everything to rest from the passing of his wife Adrian to realizing that his boxing journey as a fighter is now over.

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The story of Creed moves the spotlight away from Rocky and moves towards Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan), the illegitimate son of the late Apollo Creed. Growing up in the foster care system, Adonis never met his father, yet followed his footsteps becoming a boxer. Mostly fighting in underground cards in Mexico, Adonis decides to pursue boxing full time leaving behind a promising career in Los Angeles. His guardian, Apollo Creed’s widow, Mary Anne Creed (Phylicia Rashad) protests his decision, yet he decides to leave LA and journeys to Philadelphia to find Rocky Balboa and persuade the now venerable former champion to train him.

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For boxing fans, this movie is a must. Many top ranked boxers fill the cast from Andre ‘SOG’ Ward as Danny ‘Stuntman’ Wheeler (Son of Apollo Creed’s coach – Duke Wheeler) to Tony Bellew as the Heavyweight Champion ‘Pretty’ Ricky Conlan. Keeping in line with every other Rocky movie, the life of a boxer is not for the faint at heart. The action is vicious. A trademark of the better Rocky movies, the punch count and quality falls more on the exaggerated side, with the fighters dishing and taking more than perhaps humanly possible. It is all skillfully done though, with many of the bone-crunching combinations sure to incite gasps. With Michael Buffer starting the fight and the HBO Boxing commentators at ringside, Creed provides the brutal yet modern boxing scenes which will have you cheering in the audience.

Sylvester Stallone gives one of his best performances, as well as the rest of the cast. Phylicia Rashad was brilliantly selected for the role of Mary Anne Creed, as she covers the time gap from Apollo’s demise to present day. Lets hope that Creed is a major stepping stone for Michael B. Jordan, his commanding performance should bring him up to the A List. Creed is a perfect movie to getaway and vent from all of the holiday mayhem this season.

5 out of 5 stars

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