A very valid criticism of the MCU before Phase Three was that it has spent its time on its heroes to the detriment of its villains. It’s a testament to how well-cast and developed the heroes have been because a lot of Marvel’s villains have been forgettable at best. Beginning with Zemo in Captain America: Civil War, you began to see three-dimensional baddies, building to Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger in Black Panther. The best villains are convinced they’re right in what they’re doing and are either charismatic enough to convince the audience that they are justified in their actions or have legitimate points that they’ve taken to unacceptable extremes. Killmonger forces T’Challa out of his comfort zone and makes him face uncomfortable truths about the past of his family and the policies of his country. He’s lethal, driven, but also completely understandable and sympathetic.
Halfway through 2018, Black Panther is probably still the best film of the year-to-date. 2018 has been jammed full of unwarranted sequels and anemic remakes. This is, in all likelihood, the worst year for film in my lifetime. Without the MCU, I can’t even imagine how sick I’d be of the theater. Issue #20 releases this weekend with Ant-Man and the Wasp, and it can’t arrive soon enough. Marvel’s success this year has been astounding. The last two MCU films (Black Panther & Avengers: Infinity War) are the #3 and #4 highest grossing films of all-time in the US. That’s a staggering achievement and testimony to how trusted the quality of the MCU has become in a time where even the most reliable franchises have started to sputter out.
Creed II is the continuation of the Rocky saga and sequel to the 2015 critically-acclaimed and crowd-pleasing 2015 hit Creed, which took in more than $170 million at the worldwide box office. Ryan Coogler (Black Panther), who directed the first film, returns to the franchise as an executive producer on Creed II. The new film is being directed by Steven Caple Jr., who helmed the acclaimed 2016 drama The Land.
Life has become a balancing act for Adonis Creed. Between personal obligations and training for his next big fight, he is up against the challenge of his life. Facing an opponent with ties to his family’s past only intensifies his impending battle in the ring. Rocky Balboa is there by his side through it all and, together, Rocky and Adonis will confront their shared legacy, question what’s worth fighting for, and discover that nothing’s more important than family. Creed II is about going back to basics to rediscover what made you a champion in the first place, and remembering that, no matter where you go, you can’t escape your history.
Also reprising their roles from the first film are Tessa Thompson as Bianca, Phylicia Rashad as Mary Anne, Wood Harris as Tony ‘Little Duke’ Burton, and Andre Ward as Danny ‘Stuntman’ Wheeler. The new cast is rounded out with Florian “The Big Nasty” Munteanu as Viktor Drago, Dolph Lundgren returning to the role of Ivan Drago and Russell Hornsby as Buddy Marcelle. Creed II will be distributed theatrically in the U.S. by MGM on November 21, 2018, and Warner Bros. Pictures will distribute the film internationally.
*Text from Coming Soon
Mr. Sunday Movies has compiled every possible Black Panther Easter Egg, reference, and connection to MCU films past and present. He also analyzes the post-credits scenes and their implications so it goes without saying that if you are one of the 12 people in the world who have not traveled to Wakanda, DO NOT WATCH THIS VIDEO! There’s an extremely good breakdown of how the film characters compare to their comic counterparts, some background on the actors, speculation for Avengers: Infinity War, and fun tidbits like the interrogation scene between Ross (Martin Freeman) and Klaue (Andy Serkis) was the first time the actors had been on screen together since their “Riddles in the Dark” encounter in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. If you, like me, have now seen Black Panther multiple times, this is a great way to revisit the minutiae of the film, and we’re only a month and a half away from more Black Panther when Avengers: Infinity War now opens on April 28th!
How do you balance the safety of the few versus obligations to the many? Should the sins of the past be buried or brought to light? How can a good man be a good king? Black Panther is not just another comic book film or an enjoyable MCU installment. Director Ryan Coogler has established in T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) a complex, layered, admirable monarch. Black Panther transcends being “just another comic book movie” in the way Wonder Woman did last year. It’s culturally relevant, brilliantly imaginative, groundbreaking, challenging, and in its 18th installment the Marvel Cinematic Universe has produced its best film yet. Continue reading Movie Review: Black Panther (2018) *All Hail The King!!!*
Black Panther is one of the most complicated characters in the Marvel Universe. He’s a monarch to the most isolated and technologically advanced nation on earth. He’s a religious leader. He’s a super hero to the outside world, and he’s the bearer of a mantle that stretches back to the founding of his nation. Avengers: Infinity War showed us how pivotal Wakanda is going to be to the fight against Thanos on Earth, and I’m so pleased that they’ve gone all out again, creating another unique corner of the Marvel Universe for us to discover even when we’re going to be 18 films into the epic. Black Panther’s two international trailers have a lot of additional footage, and the film itself will release February 16, 2018. Continue reading Black Panther International Trailers #1 & 2 (2018) “The King of Wakanda is Here!”