Movies

Population Control? John Wick 3 Parabellum

To the residents of New York, New York USA, and Casablanca, Morocco worried about over crowding – fear no more. John Wick 3 Parabellum is in town. In short order (i.e., 2 hours 10 minutes) John in single-handed fashion reduces the local population by what appears to be 30% (luckily they are all bad people).

All of the good stuff that made John Wick 1 and John Wick 2 highly memorable and brilliant escapism films appear in John Wick 3. To me that means Lead Actor  Keanu Reeves operating full deadpan and includes fight scenes that are wonderfully choreographed works of art.  And yes, John does away with 15-30 bad guys in (what appears to be) single camera action scenes in one location in just a few minutes. If only we all could be so efficient in our professional work!

Unfortunately, success in Hollywood films means bigger gravy-trains are possible and subsequently studio people overtake or convince the originators “today’s” formulas and methods need to be implemented for the next installment. Also, the term Franchise is now on the table and must be put in play. John Wick 3 suffers to some extent from the development.

For me that means four new things are introduced in John Wick 3.  The first is a heavy reliance on Computer Graphic Imagery (GGI).  The 2nd is stop action photography/film editing (i.e., speeding up the film frame rate) such that it tries to overcome a flaw in a fight sequence (i.e., it appears to be faster and unatural).  The third is the villain taking the time to talk (usually slowly) about how they are going to kill our hero.  The fourth is a repeated use of some costly aspect of the filming production such that its use can be cost justified.  The first two installments were free of these aspects.  It is what made John Wick different.

However, let’s be clear, the introduction of these four aspects do not ruin John Wick 3.  The idea that is the films’ foundation and all of its other strengths overcome them.

As with any film that effectively becomes an episodic series, new aspects and dimensions will be introduced.  In John Wick 3, females with important ties to John are introduced.  The performances by Academy Award Winner’s Angelica Huston (This is Spinal Tap, AA Prizzi’s Honor, AAN The Grifters) and Halle Berry (Die Another Day, AA Monsters Ball, Dark Tide) are solid, but feel like fill ins to the plot.

John Wick is a dog lover.  Dog’s play a new an important role in John Wick 3.  The performance by the dogs in John Wick is brilliant, and also very scary.

John Wick is a cool and collected bad-ass.  If only I could call him to resolve my everyday problems.


Jeff’s Worthless Trivia and other thoughts.

Halle Berry is a dog trainer and handler by trade.  She acted in that capacity on the set of this film.

Halle Berry performed most of her action sequences – instead of a stunt person in John Wick 3.  Berry broke three ribs filming John Wick.

Angelica Huston is the principle actor in one of my favorite gags\sequences in film – all time.  Huston plays the role of an art designer in the film This is Spinal Tap.  She is asked by the group (who is desperate to rekindle the energy and success of the past) to design a on-stage set piece for one of their hits songs “Stonehenge.”  Late at night at a Denny’s restaurant lead singer Nigel Tufnel (played by the master of all parody’s Chris Guest) draws the stone wall for Huston to recreate for the stage.  Unfortunately Nigel’s drawing indicates the stone wall should be 12 inches instead of 12 feet.  The following scene with the 12″ stone wall dropping on stage surrounded by dancing midgets is a classic.

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