May 18, 2019

Movie Review # 60 John Wick 3 With Talking Flick Podcast appearance!

John Wick Chapter 3 Parabellum (2019) Keanu Reeves, Ian McShane, Halle Berry, and Directed Chad Stahelski

Director and former stunt man Chad Stahleski (John Wick 1 & 2) gets a slightly higher budget (55 million) and a few more interesting set pieces (Casablanca?) in the 3rd chapter of his John Wick series. I am a somewhat fan of the 1st two films, they have not proven very rewatchable but were fun rides that mix beautiful visuals (cinematographer Dan Lauston of Shape of Water and Crimson Peak fame) with sharply choreographed long fight scenes that blend several martial art styles (and a bit of nonsense). It all adds together for a violent, somewhat mindless ride that is built for todays video game charged 20 something year olds that think nothing of glorifying violence and stabbing folks in the head. There are certainly more gun noises than actual dialogue, which gets harder to ignore the further into the series I get. I do think the series may do itself a favor by taking a breather after this and rethink where this story is going, maybe make a time jump. 

John Wick Chapter 3-Parabellum picks up almost immediately after Chapter 2 ends with our Hero/Assassin John Wick (a mumbling but fun Keanu Reeves) on the run and looking for help. Those members of the Global Secret Society the "High Table" that have previously helped Mr. Wick find themselves in trouble when a new character called "The Adjudicator" (played well enough by Orange is the New Black's Asia Kate Dillon), she wants to punish those that have helped John Wick, putting our old buddies Winston (Ian McShane from Deadwood) and The Bowery King (Lawrence Fishburne, Morpheus!) in tight spots. At some point after visiting someone called "The Director" (played weirdly by a Russian Angelica Houston) Mr. Wick finds his way to...where else Casablanca? While there he runs into a very cool former coworker named Sofia (played perfectly by a beautiful Halle Berry) and he gets a shot at making a deal to come out of all of this with his life more or less intact. The story is all a bit of nonsense, we are all there to see John Wick use his kick-ass abilities (and also get the snot beat out of him) to take out literally 100s of basically unnamed assassins that are all trying to collect a 15 million dollar bounty on his head. If that's what you know you are going in for you won't be disappointed, if you wanted more back story and mythos I wouldn't say you'll be satisfied. The main bad is a sushi making assassin called Zero (played by Hawaii Five-0's Marc Dacascos) their last fight scene is satisfying but his character is ill conceived. I can't wait until Director Chad Stahleski takes on something different (he is working on a reboot of the 80s classic Highlander), but these movies are making more and more money each chapter so this looks like a series that will keep going a la The Fast and Furious. Go for the fights, stay for the style, but don't expect too much story. SEE IT!

(The Shawshank Scale 1-10) As I get older purely super charged and violent vehicles like this are less appealing, that said John Wick 3's ballet like spectacle is enjoyable enough and certainly beautiful to look at on the the big screen. What it gives us in style and vibe, make up for what it lacks in story and dialogue enough to give it a solid 6.0 on The Shawshank Scale. 


Talking Flick: Listen to my guest spot on Talking Flick a great movie podcast where we talk John Wick 3! Available on iTunes, Sticher, Anchor, or wherever you listen to Podcasts: Links below. 

Talking Flick on iTunes.    (John Wick 3 Episode)

Talking Flick on Stitcher    (John Wick 3 Episode)

Talking Flick Covers Pretty Woman, Hot Fuzz, and a host of other issues including bits of GOT talk and some Spiderman Far From Home trailer buzz.


Talking Flick: Listen to my recent guest spots on Talking Flick a great movie podcast where we talk about Hot Fuzz and the CLASSIC PRETTY WOMAN! Available on iTunes, Sticher, Anchor, or wherever you listen to Podcasts: Links below. 

Talking Flick Podcast on iTunes (Hot Fuzz Episode)

Talking Flick Podcast on Anchor  (Pretty Woman Episode)
Talking Flick Podcast on iTunes (Pretty Woman Episode)

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