CREED III: A Brotherhood

This weekend, CREED III premiered nationwide in theatres. The film serves as the assumed end of the Creed franchise but also as Michael B. Jordan’s (MBJ) directorial debut. Not only is this the first mainstream theatrical released film with two leading Black men since 2020 (Bad Boys for Life), but it is also a representation of Black Manhood that is not rooted in drugs or promiscuity.

Creed III, a Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) film

I saw the movie opening night and sat there wondering how these images were mirrored by the impact a Black male teacher has on students. The film shows MBJ pushing himself and others to the limits in the name of forgiveness and redemption. I know numerous Black male teachers that are teaching because of these emotions. We see Jonathan Majors (JM) show how a role model/ mentor/older Brother can influence young men’s daily and long-term paths. 

Michael B. Jordan visits Urban Prep., Chicago Public School. Photo via After School Matters

The impact the media and pop culture have on American teenagers’ psyche can’t be underestimated. Seeing images of “success” and “failure” motivates us in ways unmatched by other inspirations. I recall being a teenager, placing posters on my wall of film stars like Wesley Snipes and Allen Iverson, along with superheroes like Spider-man and Spawn.

Jonathan Majors and Ebony Magazine team up for their February 2023 cover

The promo tour of Creed III brings that energy back and then some, as we see MBJ stop by schools and after-school programs promoting the movie. Jonathan Majors drew mass attention with his Ebony Magazine cover photoshoot. The artistic shoot was inspired by a popular anime character yet drew criticism because it was not viewed as masculine.

We hear some of this rhetoric when Black males choose a profession predominantly occupied by women, like teaching. I love that Jonathan Majors didn’t shy away from a shoot because of perception, and he challenges the status quo of what masculinity is. 

CREED III is a stunning film, one that Black boys will want to watch over and over again. It incorporates Black culture seamlessly and has room for pop culture value. The film is only a footnote as I see MBJ and JM on the promotion circuit truly showcasing Black Boy Joy. Michael B. Jordan received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame last week, and Jonathan Majors delivered a tear-jerking speech that only a brother could deliver. We even see these two men share moments on camera that can only be described as Barbershop “shenanigans.” 

I truly loved the movie CREED III. It’s a great film. What makes the film great is not just the directing, acting, cinematography, and visual effects, but it’s the way these two young Black men exemplify Black masculinity and brotherhood. Thanks for delivering a classic in my eyes.