John Wick:Chapter 3 – Parabellum Review – Mindless Gore or Thrilling Action?
So on Tuesday I saw the newest addition to the John Wick trilogy, ‘Chapter 3:Parabellum’, starring our beloved Keanu Reeves as the boogeyman himself ‘John Wick’ and seeing the addition of Halle Berry as the badass ‘Sofia’. John Wick 3 picks up where the second film left off, seeing John Wick becoming the target of hitmen and women, after a $14 million price tag is put on his head for killing another person on the Continental Hotel’s grounds. I think the real question for most would be, does this live up to the past two films and if so, does it deliver a conclusion to our main characters story?
The Wicky (The Good)
First and foremost, the choice of actors/actresses is great, having Keanu return as ‘John Wick’, as well as Ian Macshane as ‘Winston’, the manager of the Continental hotel and a good friend of John’s. The movie also sees the addition of ‘Sofia’ played by Halle Berry, who we find out John helped previously and who also has some pretty aggressive dogs to say the least. I found it refreshing to see her in a new role, as the last memorable role she played in my mind was ‘Storm’ in the X-Men films, she also starred in Kingsman:The Golden Circle as ‘Ginger’ but that film has been and gone in my mind. Having been a big fan of TV’s ‘Gotham’, it was also nice to see me a member of the cast in the film, if only for a brief minute but I don’t won’t to go into further detail as not to ruin anything but keep an eye out fellow Gothamnites.
Action, action and some more action? This film continues on from the other’s in terms of the action sequences, which don’t feel as frequent but there are some quite cool kills and even funny one’s, well at least according to a fellow film goer who was laughing infrequently at some of the kills. The opening 5-10 minutes includes a quite fun action scene within a library setting and sets the tone for the film but then there are periods that are focused around building the story. On that note, just a word of advice – don’t kill Wick’s dog or anybody else’s for that matter, as it won’t end well for you. As much as I loved some of the action sequences in this film, the action can also be seen as a negative and this will be discussed later on in the negatives.
What would the action be without stylisation? I love how this film looked, it reminded me of a certain aesthetic I have seen used more recently on Instagram, combining blue/purple colours and it just looks like it belongs and it’s nice to look at. It’s quite rare that I comment on how a film actually looks, well, filmed and it’s nice to see something shot like how it is as it stands out more to me. This not only looked nice for the gernally when Wick was venturing the streets etc, but the film also benefited the fight scenes which some what reminded me of 2011’s ‘The Raid’, which I would highly recommend if you are into action films.
The Wicked (The Bad)
So now that I have discussed the bad, I think it is only right that I discuss the negatives, starting with the negative side of the action that I mentioned earlier. Don’t get me wrong, I love action sequences as much as the next guy and I completely understand that John Wick is based primarily around action but my gosh did a certain scene go on and on. I won’t go into much too detail as not to ruin anything but effectively there is a single fight scene between two John and two ninja-esque characters who battle with weapons and then fisti-cuffs, and much like this sentence it seems to go on and on and on. I think there has to a line to draw somewhere and for me, that scene peed all over the line and then jumped it like a hurdle. Based on this fact, I think a good 15-20 minutes could have easily been cut off the run time of the film which sat at 2 hours and 11 minutes which I think seemed just a bit too long.
Not only does the film not benefit from the above but I also think it suffered from a bad story or maybe a strong finish to the franchise at least, I feel like the film was overpowered by the greatness of the two previous films and I had got my
hopes up a bit too much. Don’t get me wrong, the film plot wasn’t weak but you get to the end and think to yourself, really, that’s how they decided to end it? The ending seemed a bit too generic for my liking and was left so that they could easily setup follow up films, however by doing so they went for what I would describe as the ‘safe ending’.
The Overall Feelings
So here we go – would I watch it?Would I watch it again?Is it worth your time of day? So overall I would give the film a 7/10, as mentioned above I don’t feel like the film as strong as it’s predecessors and could have benefited from a stronger story and dare I say it, a little less action. I would recommend going on a 2 for 1, or if you are really into the previous two and don’t mind drawn out action sequences, then go for it. It has by no means stood out to me but then I think I maybe set my standards too high. Next up is the new X-Men films, Dark Phoenix with a review hopefully going up later next week.
Have you seen this film yet? If so then let me know what you thought in the comments down below.