John Wick (1, 2, 3 & 4) Movies: Redefined Good Old Action Genre

John Wick movies have redefined the good old action genre in the last few years or so. Keanu Reeves plays the role of a legendary hitman – the anti-hero in this cinema franchise.

In this film franchise, John is leading a retired life, when tragic circumstances force him to come out of retirement and swing right back into the world of crime. The high-adrenaline stunt scenes are very well choreographed in these films and almost universally loved by all the action-movies-aficionadoes. Throughout four movies so far, the scenic settings of these awe-inspiring action sequences are simply too good.


John Wick: Chapter 4 (IV/2023) movie

Synopsis of this Chapter 4 movie

John (Keanu Reeves) uncovers a path to defeating the High Table. But before he can earn his freedom, Wick must face off against a new enemy with powerful alliances across the globe and forces that turn old friends into foes.

Spoilers free brief review of this Chapter 4 movie

Introduction

This movie – the almost three-hour-long film moves at a frenetic pace across different subcontinents showcasing the amazing fighting prowess of its lead star in all its glory. This movie has a total runtime of 169 minutes (2h 49m), so this is the longest film of the said movie franchise, it is a full hour longer than the 2014 original film. Fans love the extra hour of action sequences and other scenes in the movie.

Keanu Reeves & Chad Stahelski

In many ways, John’s action-packed movies reminded me of The Matrix another super-human action movie series starring the same leading action star Keanu Reeves. Both sets of movies have firmly established Keanu Reeves as a new-age action star. The director Chad Stahelski of John Wick’s film met Keanu Reeves on the set of The Matrix (1999) for the first time. Chad performed as Keanu’s stunt double and then they became good friends during the shooting of the movie The Matrix.

Later, for this particular movie franchise, Keanu requested Chad to get the director job, as he felt that Chad would be good at this action movie as its debut director. Now, both of them have collaborated and come up with this great action movie franchise about Wick and his friends from the crime world. So, far, we have loved these Keanu movies. And we hope to see a few more Keanu movies in the future, too.

conclusion

In this particular movie, it is really hard for me to choose the best action sequences shot at various locations in different parts of the world – Wadi Rum Desert (Jordan), New York City & Jersey City (USA), Osaka (Japan), The National Art Centre, Tokyo (Japan), Berlin (Germany), and Paris (France) in which anti-hero John ended up killing scores of bad guys.

We loved the entire cinema world of John except for its last scene in chapter 4 because of our fondness for John’s amazing character.

Spoilers Alert – ending explained in chapter four of the 2023 action movie

The fate of John and the Ending of Chapter 4 of the movie franchise explained

The fate of Wick in the end

We (viewers) saw in the latest chapter 4 of the film that John does not pull the trigger of his gun, instead, he chooses to get shot by his friend Caine during the duelling battle in Paris. A couple of scenes later, we see his friends – Winston and Bowery King visiting his grave located alongside his wife’s grave, to pay their respects. However, dedicated fans of John refuse to believe that he is dead. Is John dead, I am not sure.

Anyway, I am refusing to believe it and keeping my fingers crossed. I think we (viewers) might believe when we do not see him again in the future.

Explanation by Keanu Reeves

“John is a warrior who believes in old-world values and principles. His morality and character are inspired by Hagakure (The Book of the Samurai) from Japan. In this world of warriors, the Way of the samurai is death. It simply means that when one is compelled to choose between life and death, then one must quickly choose death. There is nothing more to it than that. One should make up one’s mind and go forward to embrace death. So, in that duel scene in Paris, John chooses to save someone else (Caine’s daughter) by not shooting and doing something bigger for himself.”

Keanu Reeves

Now his life/death is open to your interpretations.

Key details about this Chapter 4 movie

GenreAction, Crime, Thriller
Age-restrictionsA (18+)
WritersDerek Kolstad, Shay Hatten, Chris Collins
DirectorChad Stahelski
TaglinesBaba Yaga.
CastKeanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, George Georgiou, Lance Reddick, etc.
About – John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023) film.

Poster of this Chapter 4 movie

John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023) film
John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023) film poster

Ratings of this Chapter 4 movie

FM’s rating4.15/5
Rotten Tomatoes ratings as of the date94% Tomatometer & 93% Audience Score
Critics Consensus / Rotten TomatoesThis film piles on more of everything — and suggests that when it comes to a well-dressed Keanu Reeves dispatching his enemies in a lethally balletic style, there can never be too much.
Audience Says / Rotten TomatoesThis film might run a little long, but when the action’s this good, who’s complaining?
FM & Rotten Tomatoes ratings – John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023) film.

Trailer of this chapter 4 movie

Official Trailer – John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023) film | YouTube.

John Wick (I/2014) movie

Synopsis of this first John Wick movie

An ex-hitman comes out of retirement to track down the gangsters who took everything from him. With New York City as his bullet-riddled playground, it is a fresh and stylized take on the ‘assassin genre.

Key details of this first John Wick movie

GenreAction, Crime, Thriller, Legal
Age-restrictionsA (18+)
WriterDerek Kolstad
DirectorsChad Stahelski, David Leitch
CastKeanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen, Willem Dafoe, etc.
TaglinesDon’t Set Him Off!
AwardsIGN Summer Movie Awards – 2014 Winner IGN Award – Best Action Movie
Golden Trailer Awards – 2015 Winner Golden Trailer – Best Thriller Poster
About – John Wick film.

Poster of this first John Wick movie

John Wick (2014) film - poster
John Wick (2014) film – poster

Ratings of this first John Wick movie

FM’s rating4.10/5
Rotten Tomatoes ratings as of the date86% Tomatometer & 81% Audience Score
Critics Consensus / Rotten Tomatoes Stylish, thrilling, and giddily kinetic, this film serves as a satisfying return to action for Keanu Reeves — and what looks like it could be the first of a franchise.
FM & Rotten Tomatoes ratings – John Wick (2014) film.

Trailer of this first John Wick movie

Official Trailer – John Wick film | YouTube.

John Wick: Chapter 2 (II/2017) movie

Synopsis of the John Wick: Chapter 2 movie

In this Chapter 2 movie, the legendary hitman John (Keanu Reeves) is forced back out of retirement by a former associate plotting to seize control of a shadowy international assassins’ guild. Bound by a blood oath to help him, John travels to Rome where he squares off against some of the world’s deadliest killers.

Key details about the John Wick: Chapter 2 movie

GenreAction, Crime, Thriller
Age-restrictionsA (18+)
WriterDerek Kolstad
DirectorChad Stahelski
TaglinesNever stab the devil in the back
CastKeanu Reeves, Riccardo Scamarcio, Ian McShane, Lance Reddick, etc.
AwardsDavey Awards, US – 2017 Winner Davey Award – Social – Content-Entertainment
BMI Film & TV Awards – 2017 Winner BMI Film Music Award – Film Music – Joel J. Richard (composer)Tyler Bates (composer)
About – John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) film.

Poster of the John Wick: Chapter 2 movie

John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) film - poster
John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) film – poster

Ratings of the John Wick: Chapter 2 movie

FM’s rating4.05/5
Rotten Tomatoes ratings as of the date89% Tomatometer & 85% Audience Score
Critics Consensus / Rotten Tomatoes This film does what a sequel should — which in this case means doubling down on the non-stop, thrillingly choreographed action that made its predecessor so much fun.
FM & Rotten Tomatoes ratings – John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) film.

Trailer of the John Wick: Chapter 2 movie

Official Trailer – John Wick: Chapter 2 film | YouTube.

John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ (III/2019) movie

Synopsis of the John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ movie

In this third instalment of the adrenaline-fueled action franchise, super-assassin John (Keanu Reeves) returns with a $14 million price tag on his head and an army of bounty-hunting killers on his trail. After killing a member of the shadowy international assassin’s guild, the High Table, John is excommunicated, but the world’s most ruthless hit men/women await his every turn.

…..

key details of the John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ movie

GenreAction, Crime, Thriller
Age-restrictionsA (18+)
WritersDerek Kolstad, Shay Hatten, Chris Collins
DirectorChad Stahelski
TaglinesIf you want peace, prepare for war.
CastKeanu Reeves, Halle Berry, Ian McShane, Laurence Fishburne, etc.
AwardsIGN Summer Movie Awards – 2019 Winner IGN Award – Best Action Movie
IGN Summer Movie Awards – 2019 Winner IGN People’s Choice Award – Best Action Movie
Hollywood Critics Association – 2020 Winner HCA Award – Best Stunt Work
Online Film Critics Society Awards – 2020 Winner OFCS Award – Best Stunt Coordination
World Stunt Awards – 2020 Winner Taurus World Stunt Award – Best Stunt Coordinator and/or 2nd Unit Director
About – John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ (2019) film.

Poster of the John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ movie

John Wick: Chapter 3 'Parabellum' film - poster
John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ film – poster
'Parabellum' is the Latin word for the 'prepare for war' phrase. This is often used within the context of the phrase 'Si vis pacem, para bellum', it simply means 'If you want peace, then you should prepare for war'.

Ratings of the John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ movie

FM’s rating4.00/5
Rotten Tomatoes ratings as of the date89% Tomatometer & 86% Audience Score
Critics Consensus / Rotten Tomatoes This film reloads for another hard-hitting round of the brilliantly choreographed, over-the-top action that fans of the franchise demand.
FM & Rotten Tomatoes ratings – John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ (2019) film.

Trailer of the John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ movie

Official Trailer – John Wick: Chapter 3 ‘Parabellum’ film | YouTube.

Focus:- bonus information on this action movie franchise

originally planned as a trilogy

This movie series was supposed to be a trilogy during or shortly after the first movie was made in 2014. However, after the unexpected audience response and massive success of this franchise movie, its creators now wish to make sure to continue to expand the universe in which John’s films take place. So, we have already seen the release of Chapter 4 this year and next year a first spin-off of this franchise called Ballerina film will be released.

Meticulous preparation by Keanu Reeves

To play the role of John – a legendary hitman in a convincing manner, Keanu Reeves went through many weeks of training in martial arts and stunt driving to do as many of the action sequences as himself. So, his preparation for the role included weapons and martial arts training for many hours. He also completed months of hardcore training, judo, jujitsu, guns and physical fitness. Keanu Reeves claims that he did 90% to 95% of his stunts in these movies; however, the only stunts that he didn’t do are the ones in which John gets hit by a car and the ones in which he falls down the stairs.


If you like this movie franchise, in the action film genre in this new age, then go ahead and check out our article about the Fast & Furious film franchise too.

Featured & Other Images: John Wick films | Lionsgate movies.


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