|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Original title:||Creed II|
|Direction:||Steven Caple Jr.|
|Production country:||USA 2018|
|Running time:||Approx. 130 min.|
|Rated:||From 12 years|
Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan) made it: With the help of his trainer and mentor Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) the young boxer became heavyweight world champion. And also in his private life everything runs smoothly when his girlfriend Bianca (Tessa Thompson) accepts his marriage proposal. So Adonis looks forward to a rosy future - until he is challenged to a very special battle that will reopen old wounds. Viktor Drago (Florian Munteanu) wants to step into the ring against him. He is the son of Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren), the man who killed the father of Adonis. The boxer sees no alternative but to accept the fight. But Rocky advises him against it and is not ready to face this dark chapter of his career again. But Adonis turns a deaf ear to all warnings and accepts the challenge - which could quickly prove to be a fatal mistake…
When Ryan Coogler brought Creed to the cinemas in 2015, it was a really positive surprise. Coogler succeeded perfectly in spinning on the Rocky saga, which was actually completely exhausted, and reinventing it at the same time by shifting the focus from Rocky Balboa to Adonis Creed, the son of his former opponent and then best friend Apollo Creed. The film was a perfect mixture of nostalgia and a new beginning, which could score with a good story and a convincing Michael B. Jordan. But the biggest surprise was probably the great performance of Sylvester Stallone, who earned the action star a Golden Globe and an Oscar nomination.
No question that after this commercial and artistic success a sequel was needed. Coogler handed over the director's chair to Steven Caple Jr., who had the difficult task of at least doing the same thing as his successful predecessor with "Creed II: Rocky`s Legacy". Because to outdo him qualitatively was actually impossible from the outset. All in all, the new history of Adonis and Bianca has been successfully combined with the past of the franchise. A direct reference was made to "Rocky IV", in which Apollo Creed died in the ring. Dolph Lundgren again slips into the role of the ice-cold fighting machine, whereby Ivan Drago - just like Rocky Balboa - has meanwhile taken over the function of the trainer.
And this is exactly where the film shows its great strength. It is skilfully avoided that the events of the past are simply repeated once again by the new generation. Rather, the script, which Stallone has once again co-written, turns Ivan Drago into a very interesting and pleasantly multi-layered character. He lost everything to Rocky and he just can't shake off this shame. What this has made of him and his son is one of the most interesting aspects of this sequel. It's also surprising that the makers managed to get another character from "Rocky IV" to perform again, which you really wouldn't have expected.
Otherwise the whole thing is just another repetition of the all too familiar concept. Very well executed, but without the positive surprise effect from which "Creed" was able to benefit. After all, Stallone has taken the opportunity to bring the story of Rocky Balboa to a round and beautiful end once and for all and, should it be continued, to give the series another fresh start. Those who liked part 1 and the early "Rocky" movies should not miss "Creed II: Rocky`s Legacy". Absolutely worth seeing - with a small point deduction for the dubbing voice of Stallone, who this time is not spoken by his tribal spokesman Thomas Danneberg.
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp