Film

Dream Streams: John Wick Chapter 2

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© Niko Tavernise

 

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Service: HBOGo/HBONow

John Wick just wants everyone to leave him alone.

I think he deserves a break, honestly. There’s only a certain amount of bad things that can happen to a man before he’s entitled to just take a step back and breathe a little bit. I think the last straw here was some entitled mobsters blasting apart his nice-ass house. (If his second dog died in the fire I think he would have wiped out the population of the Earth. An extinction-level John Wick event.)

JWC2, which no one has ever called it until right now, is the rare type of sequel that does the exact same things the original does while framing them differently enough and executing them well enough that it seems fresh and new. Both John Wick films are unabashed gunplay porn, but in Chapter 2 there’s a distinct effort to make Wick the hunted in addition to the hunter, leading to fight scenes with a more natural, improvisational feel.

Much like its predecessor, JWC2 (has it caught on yet?) is unrelentingly stylish. I’ll admit the unique subtitles aren’t used as well as in the first film and at times the film looks like it nearly overdosed while mainlining neon, but I will always be partial to an action movie that attempts to be bold with its choices.

I hope everyone leaves John Wick alone and the sequel to this is Keanu Reeves drinking hot cocoa in a mountain cabin with no problems. But since that probably won’t happen, I can only hope that the inevitable Chapter 3 is a fitting capstone for a John Wick trilogy. Please god, don’t let the franchise steer towards pumping out paint-by-numbers cash grabs and die unloved like Die Hard and Terminator and Predator before it.

Finally, in summary, one final point: JWC2 is the abbreviation we should all be using and I refuse to compromise on that.

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