Chad Reviews "John Wick, Chapter 3: Parabellum"
When “The Matrix” was released twenty years ago, I am not sure many of us thought for one second that Keanu Reeves could be considered any form of a bona fide badass. Sure, he already had “Point Break” and “Speed” under his belt, but those were a different kind of film versus what “The Matrix” was going to require of him. Once that happened, the landscape of his career changed, and with the follow-up films in the trilogy were less than satisfactory, his career began to dwindle and flounder like it did before 1999. Fast forward to 2014, where his long-time stunt double Chad Stahelski cast him in his directorial debut, “John Wick,” making Reeves’ Neo character almost a footnote by taking the action star to another level by removing the zen-like nature of his character in “The Matrix” films COMPLETELY. With a second “John Wick” hot on the heels of the first installment, this character has become one of the most formidable and efficient killing machines since Arnold Schwarzenegger starred in “The Terminator” films or even “Bruce” the mechanical shark in “Jaws,” but even the first to “Wick” films were simply a warmup for the third installment, subtitled “Parabellum”.
After Wick’s actions from “Chapter 2,” he is about to be labeled “ex communicado” from the assassins’ organization he has worked for as long as he can remember, now on the run with a fourteen million dollar price tag on his head. As can be imagined, every assassin within spitting distance is willing to take their shot at being the one to kill him for that purse alone, so John Wick is forced to rely only on those he knows are willing to risk their relationship with “The High Table,” which would in turn make them targets themselves. Eventually, John has to leave the continent to seek council from those who influence “The Table” itself to get back in its good graces in order for him to move along with the life he has fallen back into.
Stahelski has created an incredibly entertaining universe, with Reeves at its core, really hitting his stride by convincing me that he can whip up on anybody on the planet without even breaking a sweat. The fight sequences are about as raw and visceral as it gets, in just about every situation, scenario, and style imaginable, leaving my jaw on the floor and a majority of my seat unused, since I was on the edge of it. With “John Wick, Chapter 3: Parabellum,” I can only hope that this character and franchise are around for a VERY long time.