Saturday, June 15, 2019

John Wick 3

One of the greatest entertainment decisions I ever made was waiting on seeing any of the John Wick movies until this month. Who knew they were this good and I would be seeing the whole saga - so far - at a time when Keannu has become a much beloved social media icon.

Part 3 begins the morning after John Wick has been disavowed and on the run with a 14 million dollar bounty on his head. A bit excessive yes, but what is an invincible action hero without a task worthy of his reputation? The fun is seeing how John Wick defeats all those sent against him because if he didn't we wouldn't have us a picture.

I wonder if both parts 2 and 3 were filmed at the same time? It certainly looks like it with the number of cast members who repeat their roles from last time. Lots of star power signed onto this project because one again it's a solid action film with Keannu going through more pain and difficulty than Bruce Willis ever did. And he did it with ten times the style and ten times the good manners. Just because you are THE most dangerous assassin of all time, is no reason to be impolite. Civility combined with over the top balletic violence.

The film is also smart and not so full of words as to distract from a very simple story. Survival. It plays like a video game but the best, most realistic game you've ever played. And you play as only John Wick because he's the only one you root for the entire time.

Here are some of the highlights.

- A giant came to kill him and John Wick kills him in a library, with a book...then he puts it back on the SHELF!! That is ICE COLD.

- The knife fight in the weapons shop was amazing. Just when I thought they ran out of knives they graduate to the axes and the hammers and most anything else with a sharp, blunted or pointed edge.

- John Wick's dog still has friends at the Continental.

- The second I saw the horse I knew John Wick would be riding it. Nothing in this movie is there just because. A horse is there for a reason. I am so glad there was a horse there.

- Then he goes to Casablanca - yeh, I know. It's so great. Another great Continental hotel. Another great concierge.

- Nice to see Miss Haley Berry hasn't lost a step. She went to the same shoot the head school of bullet economy that John Wick went to. So many different ways to shoot a guy, in a turban, in the head. Also don't shoot her dog. In fact don't even look at her dogs. The dogs are awesome. Everyone should storm out of a castle with two attack dogs.

- And then John Wick walks to the end of the world and dies in a sand dune. Just kidding. He is far from dying.I hope he has a way out of this. No, there is no way out for John Wick, is there?

"He with you?" - John Wick
"He was." - Mark Dacascos

I tell ya, I love this John Wick. He can do anything. No wonder he is the Boggyman that even the Boogyman is afraid of. He can even fight with a sword on a motorcycle in a sequence so unbelievable that it made me a believer.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention the amazing Lance Reddick. He is such a soothing presence in all the chaos. One of the great voices in television history as well. Loved him on Fringe.

And of course the rest of the cast which is amazing.

Once again everything is done with flair and the proper overkill by a cast who takes all of this stuff seriously which is the only way to make it all work. All  done under the veneer of civility. I am so glad I waited to watch all of these together to see the singular vision of the trilogy. Even John Wick isn't above 'the rules'.

The fight choreography is incredible and each sequence feels fresh and new despite that fact that it's all just alot of guy getting shot in the head...repeatedly, I couldn't look away. I wonder how many different ways that Keannu killed every individual stuntman. I say they had three dozen guys and they kept rotating them. Since the Matrix Keannu has really committed to these kind of action sequences over and over and over again and I never grow tired of it. If you love action films this is the best of the best.

Of all the fight scenes in three movies, this showdown with the 'Twins' as I call them is a highlight for me. This is badass Asian fight choreography and no one is playing around. No cuts. Long sequences where three men have to get it right to not only maintain the illusion but get the shot so they don't have to do all this hard work all over again. After awhile you would think you get numb to it but you don't.

Another great ending that makes me wish I could jump to John Wick 4. How did I think it could end any other way?

The “John Wick” franchise has reinvigorated the action movie genre in a time when the action in movies is often incomprehensible, clouded by quick cuts, shaky-camera movements, and cheap special effects. Thankfully, “John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum” — the latest entry in this unapologetically bloody, but increasingly successful action franchise — lives up to its predecessors: It delivers stunningly choreographed, beautifully shot sequences with Keanu Reeves giving a dedicated performance as the titular lead.



Debra She Who Seeks said...

Yes, Keanu Reeves is certainly the darling of the internet right now, isn't he. I love that last meme, LOL!

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

He is catnip. And I am so glad he's like that. We need both kinds of Keannu these days.