- The first half of the trailer seems like a fairly generic underdog movie. Then Adonis starts talking about his father Apollo and Sylvester Stallone steps out of the shadows, and you suddenly realize this is a Rocky movie.
- The trailer's opening scene, with Adonis psyching himself up by punching the wall before heading out to the ring, with Ryan Coogler's stark, dramatic direction making quite an impact.
- The fight being showcased becomes this and a Establishing Character Moment for Adonis and his skills; it turns out that Donnie flew down to Mexico over the weekend from his regular, white collar job, and flattened his opponent before returning home. We later find out he's done this 15 previous times.
- The first official professional fight of Adonis's career against Leo "The Lion" Sporino, who's an Olympic level boxer and no push over. The entire fight is a perfectly executed example of The Oner, and Adonis's victory wins him the acclaim needed to make the final fight happen.
- Conlan's trainer/promoter chewing Conlan out when Conlan doesn't want to fight Adonis. When Conlan expresses concern over his legacy and how he wants to be remembered, Conlan's promoter tells Conlan that the only thing the he cares about is Conlan's kids being financially secure and having a roof over their heads when their father eventually has to go to prison.
- The final fight, where Adonis proves himself worthy of the Creed name and gives the soon-to-be-jailed champion a final fight with someone he can identify as a Worthy Opponent.
- After being disrespected with a late jab by the contemptuous Conlan, Donnie comes back in the second round with a series of good punches and combinations, and the round ends with a stare-down between the opponents; no illegal hits, no cheap shots, just two fighters sizing each other up.
- All through the fight you have Rocky slowly starting to channel Mickey's pep talking style; especially the bit where he tells him that he loves him in the same manner Mickey would have said to him, and when he straight up tells him to knock Conlan's head off his shoulders and bust through him.
- Conlan lands a vicious punch in the 11th, vicious enough to not just send Donnie flat, but enough that he seems to honestly lose consciousness. Then Donnie flashes to the film of his father's Rocky fight, and rises like a man possessed. Everyone is shocked, including Conlan, who was celebrating his presumed victory and is now giving Donnie the closest thing he has to an Oh Crap! look.
- The way Donnie goes from horizontal to vertical in a second is pretty stunning, considering how his mentor, famous for his cast iron jaw, often struggled to rise from the mat.
- The windup to the 12th and final round, when the original notes of "Gonna Fly Now" flare up.
- Following that; the entirety of the final round is fought to a rousing combination of both Adonis' new theme and Rocky's classic Going The Distance (the very same tune heard when Rocky first took Apollo all the way to final round of the match that first brought them together).
- During that final round; Adonis fights using a blistering combination of Rocky's signature body blows and Apollo's distinct head shots - even the announcers pick up on it and it is awesome to watch.
- Finally, Donnie's barrage of punches sends Conlan down, and Conlan just barely manages to rise in time to avoid a technical knockout.
- No one is talking about how bad Fantastic Four was and how that could have been a Star-Derailing Role for Michael B Jordan. That's how good this movie was.
- Goes double for Sylvester Stallone. After the disappointment that was The Expendables 3, everyone pretty much wrote him off. Now critics have been saying Creed is not only the best film of Stallone's career but his performance won him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor!
- Michael B. Jordan's performance is nothing short of Best Actor material. Not only did he go through intense boxing training for this movie, not only did he get so in shape that he was practically an actual boxer, not only did he trade actual shots with other actual boxers, and not only did he play and shoot multiple, complex fight scenes and make them all look authentic, he was a good actor, standing toe-to-toe with Sylvester Stallone himself in an intense, layered performance that makes Adonis at once a new character from Rocky Balboa, but also an equal.
- The stunning success story of Ryan Coogler. With only the single indie film Fruitvale Station to his name, he was able to convince Sylvester Stallone to turn over control of his most beloved character, and ended up bringing the franchise back to the full level of respectability it had in 1976. And then he was able to use that success to helm the Marvel Cinematic Universe film Black Panther as only his third directing job. Wherever he goes from here, it's going to be something to watch.
- The movie is not only a faithful and loving tribute to the Rocky movies of old, but it is distinctively it's own movie, managing to build new ideas and visuals on top the ones that the original Rocky made famous. The multiple Oners, the choreography of the fights, the character development, all of it is amazing to behold when you consider how big of a legacy the movie had to live up to.