Keanu Reeves returns as Baba Yaga, the Boogeyman, John Wick in this sequel to the 2014 surprise hit John Wick. The original film came out of nowhere was quite the surprise for moviegoers as we watched a terrific action film combined with an instantly likable character whose motives were understandable. John’s personal story may have concluded, but John Wick: Chapter 2 opens things up in terms of some great world building in John’s profession.
The film’s plot involves John receiving a “marker”, or blood oath from a former associate of his. After his initial refusal, John reluctantly accepts and sets out on another assasination that involves higher ups in his organization, double crosses, revenge and a whole lot of flying bullets.
If I made a comparison between John Wick: Chapter 2 and another film in terms of what the film sets out to accomplish it would be 1981’s Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior. This film uses the time to expand on the concepts of the world it presented in its predecessor. George Miller’s 1979 Mad Max tells the story of Max himself. By the end of the film, that story is told and the sequel then tells the story of the world Max now inhabits. John Wick does the same.
Both films even share shots of the main character and their pet dog.
We were introduced to the hotel Continental and the rules that you can’t conduct business on hotel grounds. Now we find out about many more concepts and the world building is so well incorporated into the narrative that it’s never overwhelming, distracting or annoying dumps of exposition.
The fantastic action scenes that have John eliminating opponents with video game precision are back and they are even louder and a bit bloodier that the last film. These films have great action choreography that puts films like the Jason Bourne series to shame. It’s coherent and easy to follow. It’s fast paced with no fast cut edits. Oh and without spoiling, I’ll just say there’s one scene that may have you wincing the way a similar scene did in a particular superhero film.
The film clocks in at 2 hours long. It’s about 20 minutes longer than the original. Most of that length appeared to consists of at least to me, more extension of the action scenes. I personally loved watching them go on, however this may wear on some viewers after a while.
John Wick Chapter 2 continues the surprises of the original with more amazing action and some awesome world building. This series continues to be a breath of fresh air in the action genre.
Final Rating (4/4) John Wick continues be a great action series with this second entry that opens John’s world up even more. The action still impresses and never feels stale.