Anyway, chapter 2 takes place in the immediate aftermath of the ﬁrst movie, John Wick (Keanu Reeves) has killed everyone he set out to kill plus a few people who were dumb enough to try and kill him in return, and now he’s looking for his stolen car. We open with him ﬁnding it in the process of eliminating another branch of the Russian maﬁa in a pretty epic gun ﬁght slash car chase sequence just to tie up loose ends before we move on.
John goes home with his new dog and prepares to settle in to retirement once more, but unfortunately for him he barely has time to put his feet up before there’s knock at his door. It seems word has gotten out that he’s been on a killing spree and some have presumed this means he is back to work and an old acquaintance is at his door to call in a debt he is owed. John turns him down and our new villain proceeds to aggressively threaten him into accepting the deal despite everyone around him being able to see what a stupid idea that is.
This is actually a huge disconnect for me, the ﬁrst movie was a clever revenge story that whilst the “bad guys” were clearly bad guys our hero was also basically a bad guy and the script wouldn’t have required too much manipulation to turn it into a horror movie where John Wick relentless hunts and murders a bunch of people who whilst far from being saints don’t necessarily deserve a gruesome death.
Coupled with some amazing ﬁght sequences and a return to form for Keanu, seriously he was born to play this character, the ﬁrst movie was kind of an unexpected surprise. Simplistic maybe but it did what it did to perfection and constructed an elaborate world with it’s own mythology and rules that though we only scrapped the surface, was clearly very well thought out and opened up an inﬁnite amount of possibility.
This “secret” society doesn’t seem too concerned with secrecy, the number of people aware of it’s existence seems to be growing beyond it’s assassin base and the assassins themselves don’t seem too concerned about openly ﬁring their guns in public, starting ﬁst ﬁghts in the street, and equate wandering into a building and shooting everyone they meet as the same thing as a meticulously planned assassination. So the world has been dumbed down a bit and the villain has been dumbed down a lot and it’s impossible to have the same unique impact as the ﬁrst movie, so … did I like this? I feel like I shouldn’t like this.
Okay, so on a positive side it is basically more of the same from the ﬁrst movie, cool action, interesting world building, cool action, Keanu Reeves owning the show and cool action. I mean it’s mostly cool action, that’s kind of why we’re here, and it does it well just not quite as well as the ﬁrst movie and as I’ve said it’s impossible to create the same experience a second time around. This is basically a less interesting plot with less likeable characters. It comes to life a little when John becomes the target of the not-so-secret assassins society and we meet a handful of seemingly unique characters who come after him but they all just turn out to be nameless stunt people with guns for shooting and ﬁsts for punching and it’s just a whole lot of nothing.
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