Verdict: 4 / 5
When I think of John Wick two words come to mind: “Baba Yaga”, which means The Boogeyman. John Wick is described as the man you call when you want to kill The Boogeyman. A few poor souls find out just why John Wick is respected by all.
John seemed to have it all, a beautiful wife, a beautiful house, and a very, very beautiful car, but his past is not as glamourous as the life he now leads. This emotionless recluse of a man is no longer the loving husband he used to be. The catalyst that changed his life is now gone and he is in a state of grief.
When a little puppy (his dying wife’s final gift) arrives on his doorstep, he finds hope. On a drive out in his fancy car, he is approached by Russian thug wannabes who do not take kindly to him declining their offer for his car. John spends a few days with his puppy as he tries to reconnect to his new life, but all that changes when he is attacked. His car is stolen and his dog is killed. In a matter of days, John Wick has lost all the things that he loved the most. All that he wants now is revenge.
This movie is an all-out, action extravaganza with some of the greatest action sequences of 2014. Keanu makes it apparent that he is well versed in martial arts and close quarter combat, as he pulls off a variety of rolls, chokes and grapples in some rather impressively choreographed fight scenes. The best part is that it is believable. He is not simply beating up guys with ease. He is not a superhero, but rather a former underworld hit man getting rid of some rust as he seeks vengeance on those that have done him wrong. John is cold, calculated and focused, but his actions cause him to cross paths with an old and dangerous former business associate, pitting the entire Russian Mafia against John Wick.
Keanu Reeves is well suited for this character. He hardly shows emotion and speaks in a monotone voice. His character plays to Keanu’s strengths as it fits well into his acting ability – making his emotional outburst in the film feel real and meaningful. You cannot help but root for John Wick as he picks off hundreds of enemies, one by one.
This is not one for the kids. The level of hyper violence in this film is rather high. A majority of the kills are headshots, often the same person getting shot multiple times in the head and chest. You would swear John was a vampire hunter, as it feels as though he is emptying entire magazines into his enemies to make sure that they are dead.
John Wick is an excellent film that viewers will have no problem watching again and again. It is straight forward and straight-up violence that runs for just over 90 minutes. By the end of this film you will wish that you were John Wick, the warrior that fears nothing… not even the Boogeyman.