CREED III: The Past Doesn’t Fight Fair.
You may think that, given the choice of entering the ring to fight Michael B. Jordan, Jonathan Majors, or your Past, the Past would be the safest and wisest choice. Truth is, very few things in life hit harder and fight dirtier than your Past.
It creeps up behind you out of nowhere, carrying with it every ill intention imaginable – or, in Adonis Creed’s (Michael B. Jordan) case, the Past shows up on an ordinary day in beautiful, sunny California. It’s leaning against your SUV in the form of a troubled childhood friend, Dame (Jonathan Majors), just released from prison with nowhere else to go.
In theaters everywhere March 3rd, this scene in CREED III is the genesis. With exceptional directorial debut swag, Michael B. Jordan opens the portal down the rabbit hole that is Adonis & Dame. It’s the moment when viewers realize this is not just another installment of “Rocky’s boxing movie” anymore. The sordid history between Adonis and Dame is too complicated to ignore, as is the air too thick with their unfinished business.
The Past Emerges When You Least Expect It.
Enjoying the fruits of their labor, Adonis and Bianca (Tessa Thompson) are living the dream, with skyline views from their mansion and personal chefs to Bianca’s rise as a chart-topping music producer and pop singer. They cry no more for their newborn baby girl who was born deaf. Young Amara (Mila Davis-Kent) is the joy of the home, where even Adonis is fluent in sign language and tea time as a Girl Dad.
The re-emergence of Damian Anderson after a long prison sentence couldn’t have come at a better time in Adonis’ life. However, being in a better place to help a friend can easily and swiftly translate into having more to lose.
As Dame’s story unfolds, CREED III straps viewers into a rollercoaster of emotions, from leaning towards empathy for Dame’s rough life to booing him in the ring as he pounds Adonis for the heavyweight title. While boxing fans will enjoy watching these two gladiators battle in the first sports film in history shot on IMAX cameras, writers Ryan Coogler, Keenan Coogler, and Zach Baylin flip the script to also reveal their deep vulnerabilities.
CREED III: A Love Letter to Men’s Mental Health
Hidden in plain sight amongst the beads of sweat flying in the air, chiseled abs, and sculpted biceps, viewers will find the seeds of trauma in the lives of Adonis and Dame. CREED III gives these two, strong men permission to feel, express emotions, all while showing how painstakingly hard it is for men to do so.
How are family members, wives, children impacted by generations of men who bury their trauma out of perceived necessity? As viewers watch the reactions of Bianca and Amara, the message will hit close to home of how important it is for men to have a safe space to feel and heal.
Director’s Notes for Viewers: Micheal B. Jordan’s Two-Word Sermon
Viewers will literally watch Michael B. Jordan direct himself on screen, fighting his Past through the character, Dame. Given this extreme outlook as both director and actor, we asked the NAACP Image Awards winner this question:
What are your director’s notes to viewers when their “Dame” comes back to haunt them?
After a comical, yet pensive, “Ooooooh”, the Screen Actors Guild Awards winner began his response with 2 simple words for us all to remember: Dig deep.
Team Jesus Magazine readers, especially, will appreciate this short, simple sermon – why? Because it’s a play call taken straight out of our playbook in Matthew 13:5-6 (para):
5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they didn’t have much soil. The seeds sprouted quickly because the soil wasn’t deep. 6 But the plants were soon scorched under the hot sun, and since they didn’t have deep roots, they died.
We all have a Past that we can’t outrun. One day, we’ll have to face it.
So, when the scorching hot Past haunts us and hits us with its best shot, let’s train like Adonis Creed and dig deep. Brace for impact. It may hurt a little or a lot, and knock the wind out of our lungs.
But, teammates, trust that when it’s all over, you’ll still be standing strong. Not in your own strength, but on the Solid Rock.
“Let Go of Whatever Was, and Walk Into What Is.”
Directed by: Michael B. Jordan
Screenplay by: Keenan Coogler & Zach Baylin
Story by: Ryan Coogler and Keenan Coogler & Zach Baylin
Produced by: Irwin Winkler, p.g.a., Charles Winkler, William Chartoff, David Winkler, Ryan Coogler, p.g.a., Michael B. Jordan, p.g.a., Elizabeth Raposo, p.g.a., Jonathan Glickman, Sylvester Stallone
Executive Producers: Sev Ohanian, Zinzi Coogler, Nicolas Stern, Adam Rosenberg
Cast: Michael B. Jordan, Tessa Thompson, Jonathan Majors, Wood Harris, Mila Davis-Kent, Florian Munteanu, and Phylicia Rashad