There’s often a schoolyard mentality at work in the “Rocky” films’ portrayal of boxing: Rocky or Adonis face a bigger, badder bully, win the match because their hearts are bigger. taller and/or purer, and the adversary, now humbled, retreats into the shadows, never to be seen again. The ending of “Creed III,” in which Adonis comes out of retirement to defeat his childhood friend Dame and settle a decades-old beef — one that, honestly, Adonis is on the wrong side of — is a prime example of this. After Adonis’ explosive last-second win, the pair share a quiet moment of reconciliation in Dame’s locker room. The beef is called off and Dame’s seemingly vengeful desire to become heavyweight champion is seemingly over.
It can serve as powerful drama, but a boxing ring is not a schoolyard; it’s an office. Dame, whatever his motives may have been, is no longer just a professional boxer, but a former (albeit very brief) unified world heavyweight champion, having beaten José Benavidez’s Felix Chavez in a dirty and crass match. earlier in the movie. . At the very least, a rematch between Adonis and Dame would be considered, or a rematch between Dame and Chavez. To its credit, the “Creed” series strives to make its boxing landscape more realistic, with an elite collection of heavyweights – Adonis, Viktor Drago, Pretty Ricky Conlan (Tony Bellew) – circling over a period of several years. If and when we see “Creed IV”, Dame could very well join their ranks.
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