John Wick slices and dices in third film

Parker Otto

In an age of action franchises like “Mission Impossible” and “The Fast and The Furious,” “John Wick” stands above them with epic action, a fantastic hidden world and the star power of Keanu Reeves. “John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum,” the latest film in this franchise proves that the tale of an assassin going back into the craft is far from over.

The film takes place immediately after the events of “John Wick: Chapter 2” and sees the titular assassin, played by Keanu Reeves, on the run after breaking the laws of his assassin guild: The High Table. While running and fighting assassins who want the 15 million dollar bounty on Wick’s head, Wick seeks to find a way out of this group of assassins.

Keanu Reeves is masterful as the assassin John Wick, nicknamed “Baba Yaga” because he’s the one someone sends to kill The Boogey Man. He balances a serene attitude with a penchant for death which makes him both interesting and terrifying. If this film teaches a lesson, it’s don’t mess with John Wick.

While the first two films balanced intricate stories with pulse pounding action, the third film focuses mainly on the action. While this would be a negative aspect of most films, there have been two films preceding “Parabellum” to flush out the chracter of John Wick. Now that the viewers know him and see what he can do to average guards and thugs, it’s time to see how well he can fight against a world of assassins.

The film’s action sequences are the best the series has ever given us and there is more than enough violence to satisfy the most bloodthirsty viewer. Wick is more than up to the task of fighting for his life using a variety of weapons including (but not limited to) revolvers, pump-action shotguns, semi-automatic rifles, semi-automatic handguns, knives, axes, swords, horses and books. The action is shot with no quick cut editing but rather displays the entire scope of the action with moving cameras and wide shots. The way the film is shot makes the viewer feel as if they are dodging bullets and fighting to survive.

The world that Wick inhabits is nothing short of creative with a hierarcy of assassins. Everytime more rules or more backstory on the world is introduced to the plot, it makes the viewer more invested in the society that the films have created.

Joining the film is a magnificent supporting cast consisting of Halle Berry, Laurence Fishburne, Mark Decascos and Ian McShane who all provide the film with more characters to identify and cheer on throughout the violence. However, none of them dare upstage Wick.

“John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum” is more than the third film in a franchise or a summer blockbuster, it’s a display of breathtaking action the way it was meant to be shown tied to a creative world that needs to continuously be expanded.