So, it turns out that this was not the end. After selling the notion of a Wick trilogy, they will be making another. And presumably another. This is a shame. A trilogy is a time honored way to tell a story, and tell it well. Sketch the basics, build on them or smash, and then bring it so a satisfying end. Endings are not bad. In fact as far as a story goes, endings tend to be necessary. Opting to meander around some more feels money grubbing at best. And it messes up what could have been. Fine. I’ll get over it, one more betrayal on the Hollywood pile.
1. Keanu Reeves. He always works. No matter the level of bad or weird happening around him, Keanu is as reliable an actor as you can get.
2. The surroundings. This series can location scout. Gorgeous backgrounds to the action are once again on point. Sometimes the quality marble draws the eye away from the fight, but in a good way.
3. The Continental. This building is a character and I want to know more. If they do a prequel and it’s just Ian McShane going about his day running the Hotel, I would watch the hack out of it. Make that a show. I mean it.
4. The Cast. McShane and Lance Reddick as the concierge work well off each other, but are not on screen long. The favorite this time around is Mark Dacascos as Zero. He took a fanboy assassin and made the movie sparkle. It needed it.
5. The Western add ins. There were three bits that I noticed, but I’d have to watch it again now that I know to expect them. First was John Wick taking apart revolvers and piecing together the best sum of the parts. This was straight out of The Good the Bad and the Ugly, when Eli Wallach does the exact same process. The only difference is one has a shopkeeper present and one does not. And Eli is more of a bad guy. Also one is a classic Spagetti Western and the other is Assassins in Hotels. Next is the horses bit. Put Keanu on more horses, please. Horses = Westerns, you get it. Last is Wick has traveled far to Casablanca and braved a desert. He passes out, gets slung over a camel, taken to the exact guy he went out to meet, and is then sent to a room with a bathtub and new clothes. All of that is classic Western genre. I wish that they had done more of it, but completely changing tone suddenly for 3 might have been weird. Or amazing, we’ll never know.
1. Too many loooong fight scenes. They were well staged, but a fight is only interesting for so long. For so many times. Music would have helped, but they want you to hear all the grunts instead. Book fight was cool. Also the whole Zero fight was solid. It adds to have John fight someone with a personality after duking it out all day with the drones.
2. Starting up a lot of side missions instead of building on one. John is a focused man. He goes after what he needs to do until it is done. This time he blinks around the globe to no real purpose. I wanted him to take a nap and think a sec.
3. The Adjudicator. One person can be an investigator. If that same person comes back as the judge as well, anyone would want a second opinion. Yes, we hear you, you are with The Table. If the organization in charge of order and keeping all the for hire community from chaos sends one person, they do not seem like much of a force. Even with the backup, it does not look well. Send a team of professionals for gosh sakes. Take this seriously. The actress is not at fault for this. It did make me giggle a little when she came in looking right ( like an edgy lawyer ), and then she started taking and sounded like Zooey Deschanel.
John Wick 3 is haunted by the movie it could have been. What we ended up with is an assortment of pinned on ideas that look cool. We have a placecard. Part of me enjoyed it for what it was.
My heart was looking forward to Keanu taking over for McShane as proprietor of The Continental. It felt like that is where we were going, and there were so many clues along the way. That would be his penance. And the end.