First time I saw this movie, I was kinda disappointed to find it less constructed in terms of rhythm and composition. Then again, as the second of a "trilogy", it was bound to be darker. This is John Wick intently going against the beat, not directing it. In that sense, once you know what you're getting into, the movie do in fact live up to the expectations left by the first one. And while less spectacular than "Parrabellum", third entry in the series, it certainly upped the ante enough to breathe life in what was essentially a scenario out of an old arcade game. Which doesn't means it's bad. The main attraction here could be compared to the last Mad Max "Fury Road" : "How do you film a car chase of 2 hours?" simply became "can a single assassination run / non-stop gunfight be a movie?". And the answer is a resounding YES.
(Or was it, how many time can you surprise a titular character by a flanking car charge?)
While it is an over the top one man army getting involved into an impossibly high calibre political assassination; it is the little tactical details that make the whole into a true story. One has to wonder how far this new vague of "realism" will affect the silver screen art form in the decades to come. Certainly, a new kind of narrative (more visual) has to be created in order to correctly classify this sophisticated sequel. Though the first attempt to go with something so cryptic and obscure surrounding a powerful taciturn shooter might have been... "BLAME!", manga from Tsutomu Nihei.
We did watch both originals before going to see the third one... and I remain confident that "Chapter 2" would have been a decent ending to the tale of "the man who tried to be the most free on earth". The intensity is there from beginning to end, and while it doesn't mean much, since the universe wasn't very much explained, it is hard not to feel for the titular hero trying to get out of the spiralling disaster that civilization has turned out to be. Quite random, but feeling justified enough to be whole.
Something that was not as potent for the third movie. Strange... When we saw the first one, we got out telling ourselves that the movie did not needed any sequels. John Wick was perfect as is. Not knowing much of the details was part of the mystery and fun. Then Chapter 2 got out and we hesitated to go, wondering what could possibly be told that wasn't already done. Chapter 2 achieved so much as a sequel that we found ourselves unwillingly waiting like children for the third one... Now, that has passed. And one can now reflect on how complete and symmetric "Chapter 2" really was.
John Wick started on the lyrics of "Killing strangers so that we don't kill the ones that we love". But by the second chapter, strangers were gone... and already he was killing people that he respected - once. John Wick chapter 2 is a very "nice" take on the man who had meaning, lost it, and cannot find it again - no matter how good or invulnerable he gets; love does not come in little convenient packages with both bullets and clips. But as far as I have the impression further chapters will only rehearse what this movie beautifully and masterfully did by itself; we are speaking of John Wick here.