Alex E’s review published on Letterboxd:
Alex E's John Wick Marathon #3
John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019)
"The king is dead. Long live the king." - Bowery King
Prepare for war. I was having a conversation with my brother today to see if he wanted to go and see John Wick: Chapter 4 with me in cinemas. Hopefully he will, even if he did say that he isn't too keen on the series' third entry. This film has some of the series strongest points, and some of it's weakest moments.
John Wick (Keanu Reeves) is on the run after killing a member of the international assassins' guild, and with a $14 million price tag on his head, he is the target of hit men and women everywhere.
The film opens expertly as we the see the countdown begin until Wick's price tag becomes active, and the film is just pure fun during the first half with Wick on the run. Seriously if the film kept going like that, this could have been the best in the series by a mile.
Keanu Reeves shows his acting chops here thanks to some good dialogue delivery, where you can see that Reeves means what he is saying. John Wick also get some background for his character here, which was good to see since he needed some development.
The Continental Hotel team in Winston Scott (Ian McShane) and Charon (Lance Reddick), the concierge at the Continental Hotel in New York get more to do which I liked since those are two of the series better characters.
I do feel their was too many writers in the room with this, as Derek Kolstad is joined by 3 other writers to bring his story to the big screen. The film really plods during the middle half, and loses it's energy that was created during the opening. I feel like they were trying too hard to top themselves, which I feel shows with Chad Stahelski's direction.
The film is well shot, and Stahelski does deliver some memorable action and solid fight choreography, but the final half does feel tiresome, with a been there done that vibe to it. It does set up Chapter 4 nicely, and I am looking forward to seeing it. But despite it being a solid entry, 2019's John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum is showing signs of franchise fatigue.