The legend of Rocky lives on as Michael B. Jordan’s gutsy Adonis Johnson—son of Apollo Creed—sets out to prove he’s got what it takes to be the next champ, leaving his luxe L.A. life behind to train in the hard-knock gyms of Philadelphia with the Italian Stallion himself. After the breakout success of Fruitvale Station (also playing in this series), director Ryan Coogler shows his facility for major budget spectacle, balancing a rousing underdog sports story with a poignant portrait of intergenerational friendship. The virtuoso lensing of Maryse Alberti astonishes in a dazzling four-and-a-half minute fight sequence that unfolds in one bruising, breathless take.

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