CREED III - A lesson on trauma as a character motivation and cause and effect in screenwriting. #SpoilerAlert
Everything in a screenplay should be cause and effect. This is why revisions or rewrites have a domino effect when the slightest thing changes. Also, characters, like people, are motivated by their traumas, big or small. CREED III showcases both of these lessons:
Because Adonis is born from an affair, he is put in a group home.
Because he lives in this group home, he begins a relationship with Damion.
Because Leon - the father of the home - beats him and Damion, they fight instead of communicating their feelings.
Because they are both fighters, they are both interested in boxing. However, at the time, Damion is the only one interested in pursuing it professionally.
Because Leon beat Adonis and Damion, when Adonis runs into him later in life - both stronger and tougher - Adonis beats Leon.
Because Adonis beats Leon, Leon's friends jump Adonis.
Because Adonis is jumped, Damion pulls a gun.
Because Damion pulls a gun, he is arrested when the cops show up.
Because Adonis runs when the cops show up, he is not arrested, he seeks outs Rocky, and pursues a professional career in boxing.
Adonis is now the retired heavyweight champion of the world, and Damion's resurgence brings up Adonis' guilt for abandoning Damion and living out his dreams.
Because Adonis cannot express his emotions (about anything), there is tension with his wife.
This now sets up that Adonis is not fighting Dame but himself. His trauma. His guilt. His past. He can only defeat Dame if he learns that his demons won't sleep unless he lets them out.
Because he finally opens up about his past to his wife, she acknowledges that he must get back into the ring.
Because he gets back in the ring and defeats Damion, he can own up to his choices and forgive himself, giving himself and Damion the grace they deserve as abused children.
What did we learn? An emotional tie to an already established wound deepens the impact of the goal your character is trying to reach.
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