Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


New Rocky story 'Creed' balances brutality and theatricality

24 November 2015, 20:29

Los Angeles - Sylvester Stallone knows most of Rocky Balboa's famous fights would have been stopped by a real-life referee long before the battered and bloodied fictional heavyweight champion rallies his will to win.

Stallone also realizes many people who only know boxing from his "Rocky" saga might believe his beloved sport really looks like a Rocky movie all the time.

Also read: Jason Derulo is dating 50 Cent's baby mama

That's why Stallone has always insisted that the "Rocky" films acknowledge the heavy cost of boxing, even amid the cathartic ring victories that have turned the character into an icon.

"I do feel responsible, because I see the brain damage," Stallone said in a recent interview. "I see the harm. No one walks away unscathed."

The "Rocky" series continues this week with the release of "Creed," writer-director Ryan Coogler's reimagining of Rocky as a reluctant trainer for his oldest rival's son, Adonis Creed.

Coogler and Stallone maintained the Rocky series' delicate balance between depictions of hyper-stylized, brutal fighting and that acknowledgement of the dangers and damage inherent in boxing.

"I have this conversation with my wife," Stallone said. "(She'll say) 'This is so brutal. How can you condone it?' Well, a lot of these men, they don't sing, they don't dance. They're not intellectuals. This is what they do, and when it's done properly, it's the most incredible, graceful, beautiful, violent ballet. It's something that's just in certain men."

Early in "Creed," Rocky tries to talk Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) out of fighting at all. An illegitimate son rescued from foster care by Creed's wife (Phylicia Rashad), Adonis gives up a steady white-collar job and a well-to-do lifestyle in Los Angeles to train in hardscrabble Philadelphia.

"You want brain damage?" Rocky asks Creed. "You're better than this."

The "Rocky" saga's balance between boxing reality and cinematic showmanship was a challenge eagerly accepted by the 29-year-old Coogler, who pursued Stallone for a year to get the chance.

Coogler's first film, 2013's "Fruitvale Station," brimmed with slice-of-life realism and delicate touches. Coogler shows impressive versatility in his move to a big-name action franchise, but says he kept in mind the humble persona in which Stallone's sometimes superhuman Rocky was always grounded.

"Something we always talked about is that (Creed) has to earn his way," Coogler said. "This dude doesn't want to be handed something. He wants to go out and get it. So we knew there was going to be a bunch of fights in this movie, and each one has to feel different. Each one has to tell the story of what that fight is, and therefore dictate the style."

Jordan had his own appreciation of Stallone's view of boxing after a year of training to look like a light heavyweight contender. He filmed with real boxers including Andre Ward, Tony Bellew and Gabriel Rosado, getting hit with his share of accidental punches amid the cinematic choreography.

"Honestly, what these boxers go through mentally and physically, man, it's ridiculous," Jordan said. "As boxers, your hands are wrapped up most of the time. You can't do anything yourself. You need somebody to help you. That's the cool nuance about people who we think are so manly and masculine."

Coogler added more than a new screenwriting voice to the "Rocky" series, which had been written entirely by Stallone and directed only by Stallone and John G. Avildsen. Coogler also brings the fights to dramatic new life with staging and imagination that don't skimp on reality or theatricality.

An early bout in Tijuana is staged in a claustrophobically small ring that emphasizes Creed's solitude. Later in the film, Creed's first fight in Philadelphia is presented in much grander scope, a virtuoso display of big-picture filmmaking.

Coogler shot the entire Philadelphia fight in a single take, including the entire pre-fight walk, two rounds of action and every exchange in between. The unbroken showcase puts the audience in the middle of a boxing match in a way the first six "Rocky" movies never imagined, which was Coogler's goal all along with every aspect of "Creed."

"The story of that first fight in Philadelphia, which is so important to us, is the idea that Adonis has finally got what he wants," said Coogler, a receiver at Sacramento State before attending film school at the University of Southern California. "And when you get what you want all of a sudden in life, it's cool and it's scary, because then you've got no more excuses."

But Coogler had no desire to entirely abandon the boxing theatricality for which the series is known, particularly in the grand finale expected in any Rocky film.

"It has to build to a crescendo so we earn a final fight that delivers on what people want when they buy a ticket for this movie," Coogler said. "It has to deliver on a certain spectacle."

- AP


Wizkid takes top MTV awards

23 October 2016, 07:05

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...