A few weeks ago I watched Creed, the seventh iteration in the Rocky franchise. The movie stars Michael B. Jordan as Adonis Creed and Sylvester Stallone as Rocky. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the film. Having only seen the original Rocky, I have no investment in the franchise. I am so accustomed to reboots being less effective than originals. We live in an age where it seems like every movie is a reboot, because the only way to make money is to make something that people will recognize. No one is willing to risk their chance of being entertained on an unknown.
I don’t think there is anything inherently wrong with reboots. I am actually happy when things from my past are remade. It provides the chance to re-experience something that I love in a new way. It also gives me a window to see what people liked before I was born. Five years ago, I had no familiarity with the Rocky movies. I had some experience with them from their famous iconography, mainly from parodies. People, punching meat, running up the stairs in Philadelphia, etc. But I had no who Sylvester Stallone was or why the original film spawned so many sequels.
Thanks to current podcasts and movie reviews, I have gained an appreciation for the Rocky films. The original Rocky is a phenomenal experience. It’s an uplifting underdog story that makes you feel good. Rocky doesn’t even win his final boxing match but his participation alone feels like a victory. Just competing in the ring with Apollo Creed is enough. I feel this idea is the true core of Rocky. The idea of not being influenced by anyone else’s ideas. Rocky doesn’t cry and bemoan his loss. He knows that his journey to the final match was worth it. He doesn’t need to win because victory alone doesn’t mean anything to him.
I feel this message is carried into Creed. Adonis does not win his fight either but his effort is still inspiring. Without effort, victory is nothing. Creed succeeds because it maintains this message. I recommend the movie to everyone.