(Review) John Wick

11 Nov 2014 / 17:22 H.

ON PAPER, there are many elements in this movie’s plot which you have seen before in other films.
However, directors David Leitch and Chad Stahlelski still manage to weave an entertaining non-stop action film with Keanu Reeves pulling off a more-than-decent performance.
The story begins with an injured John Wick (Reeves), who takes out his phone and watches a recording of a woman (Bridget Moynahan) whom he obviously loves.
The story then goes to flashback mode in which we find out that the woman is his wife, Helen, who has just lost her battle with cancer.
John is at the lowest ebb of his life when he gets a puppy called Daisy delivered to his doorstep, a gift from his late wife who did not want him to be lonely.
While filing up his vintage 69 Mustang at a petrol station, John is approached by Iosef (Alfie Allen) who wants to buy his car but John rudely turns him down.
Iosef and his friends later break into John’s house, beat him up badly, and kill Daisy before making off with the car.
That is when we find out that John is no ordinary guy but a feared hired killer.
In his quest to get his car back and avenge his dog, he takes on Viggo Tarasov (Michael Nyqvist), Iosef’s father whom John once worked for.
A desperate Viggo tries to stop John but there is no stopping a man hell bent on revenge.
The movie boasts a star-studded cast in brief but memorable roles such as Willem Dafoe, a fellow hitman who is John’s mentor and friend; John Leguizamo as a garage owner acquainted with John and his car; Adrianne Palicki as an assassin called Ms Perkins; and Ian McShane as a hotel owner who doesn’t care for assassins carrying out their business on his premises.
Lots of action, lots of violence but the directors leave room for some dramatic moments.
Reeves, on his part, does a good job playing the title character, reminding us that he has displayed some acting chops in the past before his deadpan persona took over.
In fact, he holds his own in scenes with Defoe and Nyqvist, which is no mean feat.
Overall, an enjoyable film which should do well in the Asian market.


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