Keanu Reeves returns as the mythical John Wick in a blistering display of gun-fu action. Picking up straight from the end of the first film, Wick’s retirement is postponed again when Santino D’Antonio (Riccardo Scamarcio) calls in a “marker” that compels Wick to do a job for him. Mayhem ensues and fighting and action aficionados will be very pleased with the technical artistry on show.
Just before discussing the action though it’s worth pointing out a number of interesting story beats on show. The criminal mythology is expanded upon, you still can not spill blood in The Continental, but now there is talk of ‘markers’ and ‘The High Table’. There is a Matrix reunion with Laurence Fishburne and there is a new dog. Returning characters are plentiful too, if they survived the original they at least get a scene of screen time.
What most people will be here for though is the action, which is brutal and effective. And the only possible flaw is that the opening sequence, featuring a car chase, is so hard to beat that the remaining action scenes don’t quite match it. Keanu Reeves is clearly so technically proficient in both the fighting and weapon training it allows the action to be in long takes with no choppy editing and close-ups, making it almost beautiful to behold. Were it not of course for all the brains being blown out of course.
John Wick now sits alongside Keanu Reeves other great action films, Point Break, Speed and The Matrix and I’m confident we will be seeing a third outing for the stylish Wick.