John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum review
I know that he's an acquired taste, but I happen to enjoy Keanu Reeves as an actor. Not much in the sense that he's a character player, but he knows how to present himself and bolster his masculinity. He falls into the same category of John Wayne, Lee Marvin and Yul Brynner, these are actors that tend to play action roles more as they understand that their fans want to see them and not another character. Does that mean the movie belongs to them and not the story? I would say it depends on what message the movie's trying to get across.
Looking at the John Wickmovies, their goal isn't to teach the audience a lesson. They're there to watch a seemly likable man kill mafia people after killing his dog and steeling his car. But there's also a lot we don't know about the character other then he's really good at what he does. The other draw is that even though the guy seems unkillable, he has some history and people that openly fear him, giving him a bit more credibility to his existence. The first two were two fun action movies and the tradition continues with John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum.
After what happened in John Wick: Chapter 2, John Wick (Played by Keanu Reeves) finds himself excommunicated from his agency and has a fourteen-million dollar bounty for his head. After several people try to kill him, he manages to escape into sanctuary-like theater where a woman called "The Director" (played by Anjelica Huston), agrees to get him to Casablanca, Morocco. At the same time, a group called the High Table sends the "Adjustor" (played by Asia Kate Dillon) to the Continental Hotel, a place where John had been receiving help and supplies over the years. She tries to get hotel owner and manager Winston (played by Ian McShane) to step down, but he refuses.
When John Wick gets to Casablanca, he finds an assassin and friend Sofia (Played by Halle Berry) where he asks on how to find the Elder, one of the only people that can get the bounty off of hid head. His journey takes him through Morocco, the Desert and eventually back to New York where along with continuing to run into other assassins, the High Table hires a ninja Zero (played by Mark Dacascos) and his group to try and take out John Wick.
Unlike some "three" movies in other franchises, John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum continues to raise the stakes and makes for a really fun movie. The best movie I can compare this to is Mad Max: Furry Road where the whole thing feels like a rush. Just when then main character thinks he can catch a breath, more people keep coming at him and it's entertaining to see just how much Keanu Reeves can take. The action is never boring thanks to it's creative kills (whether it's a hundreds knives thrown, using horses to kick people to death, or samurai swords on motorcycles)
The story also works fine. The goal of this guy is to stay alive and it doesn't need much convincing to do so. I do like seeing how far the villains will go to see this guy dead and the people they'll talk to. It can sometimes go on too long, making some of the dialogue parts drawn out. I'd say the middle of the movie is where it almost starts to go off track as much of it is finding how John Wick is going to live and how the High Table sends who after him.
Before it can make any mistakes, it's climax and third act to pick up and make everything exciting again. It takes everything that it builds and lets it loose in an explosive finale with guns, swords, and classic martial arts. I won't spoil how things end, but it does set up for a sequel. This is something that not only would I love, but I'd guarantee I'd be the first in line at my theater.
I'll give this four and a half blood markers out of five. Though you don't need to see the first two to enjoy this, I'd recommend doing so to get an idea with the kind of world this sets up. John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum is the kind of fun I'd expect out of a summer blockbuster, especially in contrast to the more superhero-fueled Avengers: Endgame.