I enjoyed the original John Wick film back in 2014. I didn’t know much about the film at all, but I was pleasantly by the film. A character played by Keanu Reeves, whom you felt genuine empathy for. Amazing action sequences. Good background soundtrack. What do you want in the sequel? More of the same please.
Sitting down to watch John Wick: Chapter 2 after it came out in February, I was mildly disappointed. Maybe I’m crazy, but there was no heart in this movie. Was there action? Yes….. but this wasn’t about revenge or retribution or something else you could get behind. Without giving away too many spoilers, John agrees to perform a hit, and is then on the run due to the consequences. That sounds like a decent story, but after the umpteenth action sequence that was fairly repetitive of the last 14 action sequences, you get bored. Well, I got bored by this film.
Side note — let me tell you what also really bugged me about this film. I’m a New Yorker, and we kinda know our landmarks. I understand that the cinematographers are looking for the best shots and sites, and will dress up one place to look like another. No big deal. And the audience will never know the different. Fine, whatever. Do what you gotta do.
In the first film, we established that John lives in NJ — he has NJ plates. Early in this film, however, John walks from his house in NJ (long story), across the Brooklyn Bridge (?), and checks into the Continental hotel. Who would do that? That’s not how you would get there from NJ, and also, why not call a cab or take an Uber/Lyft?
Speaking of the Continental hotel (the one that that hosts the various assassins in NYC), the real location is really not a hotel. The building is downtown in the Financial District near Wall and Water St, and in the lobby, it’s a Japanese restaurant that sells somewhat overpriced sushi. But it’s a hotel in these films. Fine, whatever, who cares. Soon after John enters the hotel, he goes to the roof, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral (normally located in Midtown) is next door. Hmm, that’s odd. I mean, it’s St. Patrick’s, and that’s a long way from downtown.
During a important fight scene, John is running through what is obviously Lincoln Center (up in the 60s), and heads down into a nearby subway station…. and pops into what is obviously the World Trade Center Oculus mall (again, way downtown.) There’s a shootout that continues onto the PATH train platforms, and continues onto a PATH train, which normally only go to NJ, but are now heading to Brooklyn for some reason. Now I can only assume we’ve entered into some alternate dimension.
Is this a big deal? I suppose not, but man, I really found this all very annoying.
Anyway, I didn’t like this film as much as the first one. There’s not a lot of story, the action was repetitive very quickly, and overall meh.
John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017)