This is one of the best sequel Keanu Reeves has ever been a part of, or will ever be a part of. Yes, I know that The Matrix sequels were the only time he actually revisited a franchise, but at this point in his career, I can’t see him starting up another franchise like this. John Wick was a blast to see on the big screen, but that’s honestly just an appetizer. Thanks to the critical reception and enough word-of-mouth, making its box office return enough to warrant a sequel, John Wick: Chapter 2 was made possible. It’s very rare that a sequel can top its predecessor. Sure, the arguments of Aliens over Alien or T2: Judgment Day over The Terminator are made on a daily basis, but most franchises fizzle out after the original, say for a few. Happily, John Wick: Chapter 2 can very safely be added to those few. Here is why this film is not only a great sequel, but an even better film that the first.
Literally the first frame of this film gets you right back into the action that you loved about the first film, which also leads me up to the first complaint I have about John Wick: Chapter 2. After a solid ten minute action sequence, the following 30 minutes seem to go by at a snails pace in comparison, but the film does shut you up from feeling bored, to say the least. Once again following John as the main protagonist after he has lost yet another portion of his life, a man from his past returns to remind his that he owes him a debt. After fulfilling that debt, a price is put on his head, leaving him nearly defenceless. Having said that, no number of people can take this man down, and the action never lets up from there.
Once the film begins to deliver fans what they came to this film for in the first place, it literally seems like one drawn-out action sequence for about an hour straight. I found myself completely zoned into the screen throughout the second half of this film, which is superbly directed and some of the most fun I’ve had at the movies in a while. You can’t help but chuckle at the fact that our titular character is able to get out of certain scenarios, because there is just no possible way that one man can take down this many men with guns and walk away alive. That being said, if you can buy into superhero films as serious dramas in todays day and age, then you can forgive a few ridiculous moments in John Wick: Chapter 2 movie.
Just like the first film, you shouldn’t be going into a film like this hoping for Oscar-worthy screenwriting. I have to critique this, because from the villain plot line, which is fleshed out enough, to the dumb one line conversations that certain characters exchange, there are aspects in John Wick: Chapter 2 that you just have grin at and shrug off. Having said that, as by the number as the villain sub plot is, there is much more depth to this story than what the first film delivered, but don’t even get me started on the way the film ends. Let’s just say that if John Wick: Chapter 3 picks up right where this film leaves off, it will be one pretty ridiculous film, even by the already set standards.
In the end, John Wick: Chapter 2 is a film that picks up right where its predecessor leaves off, which absolutely requires you to see the first film, but let’s be honest, if you are going to see this film in theatres, you’ve probably seen the first. Due to its incredibly violent nature, there are many viewers who will easily be turned off by this film, but for straight-up shoot-em-up films, you can’t get much more fun than this nowadays. With great direction, a cheesy and fun screenplay, action that is far superior than the original, and a set-up for a third that will have you itching for more, John Wick: Chapter 2 is just one big gift for action fans. It’s in no way perfect, but it was an absolute joy to see on the big screen. My only warning is the fact that it’s overly violent. If you can’t stomach an excess of death on-screen, then this film definitely isn’t for you.