During my recent holiday to New York City, I had the privilege to an array of films on the plane journey to America, and one of those choices was Keanu Reeves’ new film ‘John Wick’. Arriving in the States back in October, the most talked about Indie action flick is finally arriving in the UK this week and it’s definitely a film to go and see. The story follows John Wick played by Keanu Reeves who is an ex-hitman who is out of the business after the death of his wife. Shortly after the funeral of his wife, John Wick receives a gift from his dead wife which is a puppy which is to help him through the difficult period. Deciding to take a cruise through the city, he is approached by a Russian gangster who wants to buy his car, to which John replies with “No”. Angering the mobster, he decides to steal John Wick’s car and in the process, teach him a lesson. The turning point though is when they kill his dog; the only thing he has left after his wife had died; which results in John Wick coming back from retirement and getting revenge.
Even I’ll admit that the story is pretty ridiculous, but the events that follow those first twenty minutes or so, completely make up for the cheesy introduction. Directed by stunt coordinators David Leitch & Chad Stahelski who worked on numerous action films in Hollywood have the right credentials to provide brilliant stunt work in ‘John Wick’ to which they do, very well, and it helps even more that Keanu Reeves wanted to do all the stunts too as it would make the film feel more authentic, and that does help a lot. Credit has to be given to these first time directors though, as they deliver a thrilling Hollywood action movie and the best Hollywood action movie for a very, very long time. The couple incorporate the feel of an old school 90’s action film with the advantages of modern day filmmaking, adding on a banging soundtrack throughout the film which keeps your blood boiling and heart pumping throughout the entirety of the film.
For me though, it’s seeing one of my favoured actors, Keanu Reeves back to his best form and giving us his best film since ‘The Matrix’ which was a stunning 16 years ago. Ever since being blacklisted by Fox after refusing to do the sequel to ‘Speed’, Keanu Reeves has always struggled to do some quality films, barring ‘The Matrix’, but it’s a joy to see the resurgence of Keanu Reeves on our cinema screens as the big bad action hero; and I don’t believe it’s the end of Keanu’s run as he has already signed up to Nicholas Winding Refn’s new film as the lead, has already shot and premiered the new horror film by Eli Roth and has already had the sequel to ‘John Wick 2’ greenlighted for production.
Things are on an up for Keanu Reeves and deservedly so after this rollercoaster ride that is called ‘John Wick’. Superbly directed, a very cool soundtrack, an easy storyline to grab a hold of and did I mention that the kill count in this film is crazy? 76 deaths by the hands of John Wick, that people, is a huge kill count! ‘John Wick’, you get 4.5 out of 5 stars!