In this review I may spoil some elements from John Wick (The first movie) so if you don’t want to be spoiled stop reading, go and watch John Wick, come back and read this review of the second movie. I haven’t reviewed the first one but it is awesome and worth checking out.
John Wick: Chapter 2 picks up shortly after the events of the first film. John Wick has gotten revenge on the people who killed his dog and now he wants the car they stole from him. As John begins to return to a normal life with his new dog, a person from his past comes back to collect the marker John paid to leave the assassin life behind him. The story flows into a ‘one last job’ movie filled with betrayal, revenge and incredible action. John Wick: Chapter 2 stars Keanu Reeves, Ricardo Scamario, Ian McShane, Ruby Rose, Bridget Moynahan, Peter Stormare, John Leguizamo, Laurence Fishburne and Common
Sometimes when a sequel tries to be bigger than the original they fail miserably at it. This is not the case with John Wick: Chapter 2 when the action is taken to a new level with amazing fight choreography and phenomenal ‘gun-fu’ sequences. There is even a fight when John Wick kills some assassins with a pencil, yes a pencil and it looked awesome. The reason this works better than most other movies is due to the skills of the crew and cast. Director Chad Stahelski has worked as a second unit director and fight chorographer on many big films such as The Matrix Trilogy Captain and America: Civil War. It was through these experiences where he and his partner David Leitch were able to shoot fight sequences that are so engrossing and visually impressive to watch. The sequence in the Roman catacombs was brilliant, well shot and highly enjoyable as John Wick destroyed anyone in his way. The knife fight on the subway was some of the best choreography in modern cinema. The action that was achieved in John Wick: Chapter 2 could revolutionise the action genre.
The creators of the first movie stated in an interview that they needed a reason to justify John Wick killing so many people without losing the audience. They achieved this by having the main antagonist murder a puppy. No matter what happened the audience were empathetic from the start and accepted the bloodshed. This is the extremely dark and creative filmmaking that allowed John Wick to become the hit that was. Whilst I loved the action in the second movie more and loved the fact that no dogs were harmed during the movie, I felt as though the story was not as strong. It was not a bad story or concept, but I found myself more engaged by the action rather than the story. Another thing that bothered me was in the first movie everyone was afraid of the name John Wick, The Bogeyman, but in this everyone thinks that they can kill him. Even those who know of his reputation still try to kill him. It is still a really fun movie but not as strong as the first one.
Besides the action there is an underlying element that makes John Wick stand out from similar action movies and that is the mysterious hotel The Continental, a hotel where the assassins of New York will gather, relax or prepare for their next job. This organisation also has deep customs and culture that everyone in this world must conform to. In John Wick: Chapter 2 the audience learns that this hotel in not exclusive to New York, with Continental Hotels being all over the world. The underground society appears to have a ruling councils and a culture that’s has some fascinating rules and customs but also has a large number of people who are involved.
Not as good as the first but definitely a worthy addition that makes you excited for the third one. The beautiful thing about this movie is how it sets up a third film (currently being written) and yet John Wick: Chapter 2 stands alone as a solid action movie. The ageless Keanu Reeves was born to play this role and it was great to see him and Lawrence Fishburne back on screen together, now they just need Carrie Anne Moss in the next movie.
Definitely check out John Wick: Chapter 2 if you are a fan of the first movie and if you hated the first one for the fact a puppy is murdered, rest assured that no dogs are killed in this movie just lots of people. If you enjoy good action movies, or just action movies in general then this is a great franchise to watch.
Thanks for reading my review of John Wick: Chapter 2. Please like and let me know your thoughts in the comments section.