REVIEW: John Wick: Chapter 2

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Review by Dustin Heller

John Wick: Chapter 2 is the new action flick starring Keanu Reeves as the titular character.  This is the follow up to the hugely successful John Wick movie from 2014 which also starred Reeves.  Back in the director’s chair for the sequel is Chad Stahelski whose only other directing credit is John Wick.  Alongside Reeves, the movie also stars CommonLaurence FishburneRiccardo ScamarcioRuby Rose and Ian McShaneJohn Wick: Chapter 2 is rated R for strong violence throughout, some language and brief nudity.

John Wick is back!  He has a new dog and he’s still searching for his stolen car.  Now that he’s seemingly come out of retirement from the events that took place in the first movie, an old acquaintance needs a favor and is cashing in a blood marker that John gave to him before his retirement.  This isn’t just any favor, though, as he’s requesting that John assassinate his sister, who happens to be the newly appointed leader of their criminal organization.

John refuses, but he knows that he must fulfill the marker in order to truly be free from his debt and his past.  In order to complete his mission, he travels to Rome and goes face to face with some of the world’s deadliest assassins.  It’s from here where things really begin to spiral out of control.

Wow, what a draining movie!  I like a good action film, but John Wick: Chapter 2 is an all-out bloodbath with little-to-no story at all.  If I didn’t know any better, I’d guess that they were trying to break an all-time record with most kills by a person in a single movie.  Wick would give Rambo a run for his money.

The movie literally goes from one shootout to the next with a couple of fistfights thrown in for good measure.  Actually, a lot of the movie felt like a first person shooter video game–which, by the way, is not entertainment.  The only takeaway that wasn’t complete garbage was Keanu Reeves’s performance.  He’s a great screen presence and plays this part exceptionally well.  It’s just unfortunate that they didn’t put any thought into the script.

If your idea of a good time is watching hundreds of people get shot in the head and killed, then this is the perfect movie for you.  John Wick: Chapter 2 is a forced sequel that amounts to nothing more than an easy cash grab for the studio, which means we can all start to look forward to John Wick: Chapter 3 a couple of years from now.

Grade:  D

John Wick: Chapter 2 opens in theaters on Friday, February 10