Keanu Reeves reprises his role as an expert contract killer in “John Wick Chapter 2.” Scheduled for release in the United States on Feb. 10, 2017, when audiences will have a front row seat as he unleashes his fury against those out to eliminate him.
The first “John Wick” movie opens with Reeves stumbling away from his vehicle, holding his lower left abdomen. He falls to the ground. While looking at a video of his wife on his phone, he seems to pass out.
John Wick’s Backstory
His wife, Helen, played by Bridget Moynahan, who recently passed away. Through circumstances, not of his making, Wick is forced to come out of retirement; at least temporarily. His desire for revenge resonates on the screen, which captivates the audience.
While watching some well-choreographed fights, viewers are drawn into his grief. The event leading up to Wick’s vendetta was when the spoiled child of a Russian mob leader attacked him in his home, murdered his puppy, and stole his prized 1969 Ford Mustang.
There is a fair amount of macabre humor, such as the cleaning service to pick up the dead, and the Continental, which the assassins’ club med. Then there are code words used by Charon, the ever-somber concierge, played by Lance Reddick. For example, after Wick shows up in lobby, a bloody mess, Charon suggests some whiskey, and then in the next scene Wick’s wound is being sewn up and he is offered pain medication from the house doctor.
‘John Wick Chapter 2’ Foreshadowing
In the first movie, the Continental manager, Ian McShane, as Winston, asks Wick if he is certain he has “returned to the fold.” He continues the query:
Have you thought this through? I mean chewed it to the bone? You got out once. You dip so much as a pinky back into this pond, you may well find something reaches out and drags you back into its depths.
The end of the film takes audiences back to the opening scene, which finds Wick rising from the ground and breaking into the building next to where he crashed. After pouring hydrogen peroxide on his wound, he leaves with a beautiful Staffordshire Terrier.
Beware Criminal Underworld Here Comes ‘John Wick Chapter 2’
Time magazine discussed the new movie with Reeves, who explains that he is drawn to “stories about fighting against unreasonable authority and systems.” The 52-year-old actor has certainly played similar characters, like Neo, in “The Matrix;” and John Constantine, in “Constantine.”
In “Point Break” and “Speed,” his characters were strong yet moodily smoldering. Reeves pairs the melancholy and the action of his past productions with his John Wick persona. He created a phenomenal bad guy, “one of the better [bada**es] of cinema over the last several years,” writes Jeremy Thomas for 411Mania.
“John Wick Chapter 2” will hopefully give audiences the same performance. Now that Wick is out of retirement and a reluctant gun for hire, the new movie may provide excitement, angst, and well choreographed “anime-styled fight sequences.”
The dark longish slicked back hair parted down the middle, and his rakish length beard contoured to highlight his high cheekbones gives way to Wick’s melancholy and gloom. His character is, once again, reluctantly pulled back into the criminal underworld.
In the trailer, Lawrence Fishburne greets Wick saying, “you’re not very good at retiring.” To which, Wick replies, “I’m working on it.” The atmosphere between the two men is tense, the viewers expect a fight scene between Reeves and Fishburne but find the two come to an atypical compromise.
Joining Reeves in this second episode of the John Wick series are Fishburne, as Bowery King; Riccardo Scamarcio, as Santino D’Antonio; John Leguizamo, as Aurelio; and various assassins and villains.
“John Wick Chapter 2” enjoys a 9.6/10 Amazon rating and 95 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. The R-rated film is a crime-action drama, where the main character tries to right some wrongs and to protect himself against those who placed a bounty on his life. Audiences could be in for a thrilling 122 minutes.
By Cathy Milne
IMDB: John Wick (2014); John Wick Chapter 2 (2017)
Time: Keanu Reeves’ contract killer with feelings returns
411Mania: The Movies/TV 8 Ball: Top 8 Keanu Reeves Movies
Summer Entertainment: John Wick (2014) Courtesy of HBO
Featured Image Courtesy of Mark Dunne’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Top Image Courtesy of Tania Taylor’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
First Inset Image Courtesy of Dinsey|NBC Television’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License