John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum

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

I was genuinely worried going in I might end up being sick of the series. But absolutely not. This is probably my favourite ongoing franchise right now and my favourite trilogy since the Matrix for the time being. Just everything these films do is totally my vibe. The whole weird rich mythology feels like something Ed Brubaker would create.

I love that no matter how ridiculous the latest piece of world building of the film is, it's presented with utter sincerity, like Keanu, Chad and the gang come up with the weirdest shit and they're so impressed with themselves, they present it as the coolest thing ever. Almost like school kids. It's clear there's a pure love of action cinema behind these films, from a weird homage to Rocky, to some really blatant Matrix references that may as well have Keanu and Fishburne stop and wink to the camera, there's also homages to Game of Death, The Villainess and The Raid 2, probably countless others I didn't clock immediately. The main physical villain here is Mark Dacascos, leading a hit squad consisting of him, Cecep Arif Rahman and Yayan Ruhian, which is kind of a mini expendables do martial arts fans. So it's really an all encompassing kind of love.

The first one was basically a Russian folk tale, a kid acts like a little shit and unleashes what's fundamentally a curse on his entire family. Chapter 2 is more akin to Dante's Inferno. A condemned man travelling through the depths of hell. I haven't quite figured out 3 yet, but the first fight John Wick gets in, is against a literal giant in the fairy tale section of a library so that's something for future viewings to decipher.

This one broadens the world a lot more, if you ever saw news headlines of a John Wick series spin off called The Ballerina, it's explained here, plus there's a deeper dive into the Continental here for the upcoming show. The real stand out for spin off potential here is Halle Berry as Sofia, who is utterly fantastic. Even if her complete and utter disdain for Wick, who can only regard her with a mix of reverence and hangdog sadness hits a little too close to my current relationship lol.

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