In Creed 2, the hero boxer Adonis “Creed” Johnson finds himself now champion but still chasing the ghost of his legendary boxer father Apollo Creed. Donnie(Adonis) who has now become a champion heavyweight is being challenged by the bigger stronger Russian Viktor Drago who is the son of Ivan Drago, the man who killed his(Donnie) father in the boxing ring 30yrs ago. As Creed 2 unfolds with each emotional “I’m not crying, you’re the one who’s crying” scene it becomes clear that Creed VS Drago is not a battle for the championship belt but a timeless war between fathers and sons
Absent Father Present Son
Although Donnie’s father Apollo died before he got to know him, it doesn’t make his journey less relatable to many other fatherless sons. Whether it’s by death or abandonment the haunting of an absent father is forever in the present son’s life. Like Donnie, most present sons build resentment from the absent father’s past mistake’s while inadvertently inheriting their present ghost of issues that haunt them throughout life. The invisible father leaves a legacy of either regret or greatness, whether it is anger from those who remember the hurt caused by his(Father) actions or loved ones who share joyful unforgettable memories that the son will never experience. In the film, Donnie doesn’t walk too far without seeing an image of his late father through photo, portrait or TV representing the lack of freedom a present son feels because they’re a mirror reflection away from being reminded that the path to self-discovery is a difficult one.
Present Father Absent Son
Thirty seconds into his presence on film, one knows that Viktor Drago has been raised with a single purpose to reclaim his father Ivan’s past lost glory. Viktor is an absent son, an instrument used to live out achievements that are not his own but of a present father. The absent son’s passion and desires were spoon fed since to birth to right all wrongs and failures made by his father who still carries the pain of never going pro. The accomplishments of the absent son are cries of desperation for the father’s love and approval, hoping for at least a slight pat on the shoulder as a sign of affection. The father never learned to cope with loss and regret so instead of developing a son to love he created a puppet with a purpose.
Neither father present nor absent could predict what the ramifications of their actions would have on each son’s livelihood. The inability of a father and son to showcase affection often creates competition instead of emotion. For the absent son, a hug is replaced with a punch in the chest, and a “Man up!!!” shout is the protocol for a conversation. The present son is less likely to have a father figure who will help guide his emotional lost but instead advise he tuck away all sad feelings because that’s what real men do. Both sons will learn from both fathers how to wear their suffering as a badge through life but neither will learn how to have compassion for one another. The role of father and son should be one of a warm relationship with no emotional ceiling but instead, it is often created to be a successful operation.