John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum ★★★★½

Rotten Tomatoes: 90%
Metacritic Metascore: 73
IMDB: 7.5


Release Date:
Distributor: Lionsgate
Budget: $55M
Worldwide Gross: $326.7M
Total Film Awards: 12

2019 Ranked

Bowery King: "Seven cuts. Under the table is where shits get done. And they're about to find out, if you cut a king, you better cut him to the quick. So... Let me ask you, John. How do you feel? 'Cause I am really pissed off. You pissed, John? Are you?"

SYNOPSIS: John Wick 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.

Very rarely will the third chapter of a film franchise garner the best rating on IMDB or any other aggregate movie review website, for that matter.

TRIVIA: Keanu Reeves began training for this film four months before filming. He says, "There are so many different kinds of action sequences, not only more styles of martial arts and more gunplay, but also motorcycles, horses and dogs, so the training was intense. But honestly, I love it. I love this character and I love the John Wick universe we've created."

As far as film franchises go, most tend to drop off and just become cash cows that are created for the sake of making loads of money. The Transformers and Terminator franchises are a perfect example of this.

TRIVIA: The glass structure where John fights Shinobi 1 and Shinobi 2 in the film's climax cost $4 million to construct.

Then there is John Wick: Chapter 3, which has quite simply broken all of the aforementioned rules and may have set a new standard.

TRIVIA: Halle Berry broke three ribs while filming the movie.

TRIVIA: Halle Berry had to learn dog training during the production. She spent six months learning how to train dogs.

The plot is effectively laid out for you in the first ninety seconds of the movie. John Wick is excommunicated, and there's a $14m bounty on his head. Following that brief bit of exposition are two hours of endlessly entertaining action, and while the film does keep you engrossed with its sense of mystery and intrigue surrounding this world of allegiances and deception, it's the thrill of the chase l that ultimately matters.

TRIVIA: Keanu Reeves was asked if he did his own stunts when John Wick was hit by the cars and he responded by saying, "Well, I would've, but you know, hospital. I could've maybe done it once, but that would've been it for me."

Parabellum maintains a rather cutthroat pace throughout, right from the frantic opening half-hour through to the brutality of the final act. There's a lot more humor on show in this installment, which works due to how ludicrous some of the action has now become.

TRIVIA: Cecep Arif Rahman and Yayan Ruhian, who appear as Shinobi 1 and Shinobi 2 respectively, revealed in an interview that their Indonesian dialogue during their fight with John Wick in the glass structure was not in the script. Director Chad Stahelski thought that since the fight is quite long and consists of several rounds, it might be good to have them talk to each other between rounds and he also insisted that the dialogue be in Indonesian. After the fight, Keanu Reeves suggested that John Wick say something like a farewell phrase to the Shinobi duo in Indonesian language, as John Wick in all three movies is depicted as able to understand and speak multiple languages, at least casual conversation. Reeves then asked them, how to say "See you" in Indonesian. Cecep and Yayan said that in Indonesian it would be something like "Sampai jumpa", so Keanu then practiced before the shooting how to pronounce the phrase in Indonesian correctly.

If you want depth, character development, and story-telling then go watch The Godfather. In a grade A action film, the pacing is more important than depth, the choreography is more important than character development and the story is only used to get the hero from one set-piece to the next. Parabellum is absolutely relentless in that it's ridiculous in the best ways while being loud and violent from start to finish.

TRIVIA: Five different dogs portrayed Sofia's two dogs. They were trained by Andrew Simpson, who also trained the dire wolves in "Game of Thrones." The dogs were taught a one-of-a-kind form of dog martial arts that Chad Stahelski created for the film.

Chapter 3 feels like a celebration of the action genre, showing no franchise fatigue and referencing a number of great action films in the process, even a nod to the original action man, Buster Keaton, graces the film in its opening moments. The first two films delivered hard-hitting action but Parabellum takes it to a whole new level for the franchise, with books, horses and dogs playing a major part in doing so.

TRIVIA: Keanu Reeves describes John's conflict in this film as "a battle between two sides of himself: John and John Wick" He says, "John is the guy who just wants to be left alone, who seeks a quiet life in which to remember his wife. In order to do that he has to engage the side of himself that is John Wick, the side that knows how to fight to the death. John Wick is the only one who can help John survive."

Suspend your disbelief and strap yourself in because John Wick is back in spectacular fashion. Over the course of three films, he's earned his place in the action hero hall of fame in a franchise that should be regarded as one of the greatest within the genre.

DIRECTOR: Chad Stahleski
WRITERS: Derek Kolstad, Shay Hatten
FILMING LOCATIONS: Casablanca, Morocco - Western Sahara Desert

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Fact-Checking / TRIVIA Source: IMDb

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