Trying to fall in love with film again.

John Wick: Chapter 3 Parabellum shows that the series keeps getting better and better

Mild spoiler alert for John Wick 2 

John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019) - Posters — The Movie ...Story 
Immediately following the events of the last movie, John finds out that the bounty on his head has not only been doubled but has now gone worldwide. 

The storytelling in this movie is a little more complex than the others, not so much that you don't know whats going on but you definitely need to have seen the previous 2 movies to grasp what is going on here because this movie takes place minutes after its predecessor.

You also see and learn more about the highly organised world that this movie operates in and I love it. Even though the people in this movie operate on the other side of the law there is still a code that they all have to follow complete with their own currency, it all makes sense.

Acting 
You see less of John stoic side in this movie. He's more compassionate and even remorseful at times which gives for a pretty layered performance when you stack it up to John Wick the killing machine. While he is still the no-nonsense character who doesn't say much, he still manages to be with at the same time and it's a perfect balance of wit and intensity.

Some actors from previous movies return like Laurence Fishburne, Lance Reccik and Ian McShane while introducing new faces like Halle Berry, Asia Kate Dillon and Anjelica Huston. The complaint I had in my previous review about the factors not doing much isn't squashed in this movie but it's not as.....prevalent, for lack of a better word. You get to see Halle Berry and Keanu Reeves kick ass together (which is what I wanted) and Ian McShane and Laurence Fishburne characters play a much larger role in this movie. I would've loved to see Asia Kate Dillon's adjudicator do more. She's a badass character and I'm hopeful that she'll be in the next one.

Writing/Direction 
Having that same directorial and stunt crew as the previous 2 films creates a connective tissue between the films. Sometimes when a different director takes over a sequel it feels disconnected from the first due to the different directorial styles clashing with one another but you don't get that here. it truly feels like a continuation. 

Chad Stahelski has a firm grip on this franchise and you can tell that he and the writers know exactly where they want this story and character to go because there is a structure that the film follows and rarely deviates from. There is no time for unnecessary plots that don't go anywhere. There are callbacks to previous movies that don't feel repetitive or forced. You get the reference and the filmmakers know that so they don't dwell on it. 

Much like its predecessor, this movie has a runtime of just over 2 hours and you don't feel it. It's pulse-pounding action from the start of the movie till the end, although there is a fight scene towards the end that slows down the pace of the third act. 

Am I going to talk about the cinematography in this movie much like the previous 2? Yes, yes I am because it just gets better and better. Dan Lausten outdid himself with this movie. What I love the most is how vibrant the course are and how colour is used to distinguish between locations. Dan Lausten has also talked about shooting in the rain and how him and the director tried to make the movie more atmospheric while shooting long and wide takes to give the movie a different look and feel.

Some of the movie takes place in Casablanca where a lot more natural light is used and it offset by a brighter more orange colour palette.
The John Wick Universe is Cancel Culture — Remains of the Day
Still of Keanu Reeves in John Wick 3
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Still of Keanu Reeves

New York is a lot darker both figuratively and literally, especially the Continental where the third act takes place.


CGI/Set Design 
Even though the movie takes place in New York the filmmakers aren't showing you the same locations. Just as you learn more about this world, you see more of it too. Even little things like different establishing shots make this movie look different from the previous two. 

A lot of the effects in this movie are practical and it makes the movie more immersive because everything is more real. Even though there is CGI in this movie, the movie does not rely on it. While writing this review, I found out that the VFX department toned down the violence to make it looks more realistic and the movie is all the better for it. At no point did I stop and think about the CGI that was used in the movie which shows just how well it blends into the practical effects.
I've said it in 2 reviews but I'm going to say it one more time for good measure.

" If Luca Mosca could send me all of the suits John wears throughout the movie I would be very grateful. " 

I know that it's the same style of suit from the lats 2 movies but it looks so good that I REALLY want it.

Score/Soundtrack 
There isn't that much advancement between the score of the previous movie and this one so there honestly isn't much to say in that regard. However, I will say that the use of classical music makes the scenes stand out more. I'm not sure why classical music makes so much sense in the context of violence (probably has something do with the contrast of what you see and hear) but it works brilliantly. Whoever decided to sue The Four Seasons by Vivaldi is a genius and has ALL of my respect.

Overall Thoughts
Watching all three John Wick movies within weeks of each other has given me the opportunity to look at it as one long movie as well as three independent films and it works both ways. I do have to say that I think John Wick 2 is the weakest of the trilogy even though I liked that movie a lot. This series manages to up the ante without losing what made the first one so great. A solid story, good acting and fantastic action and fight sequences that don't require shaky cam and fast-paced editing. as well as Keanu Reeves being a badass. What more could you want in your franchise? I mean there's a chase scene on a horse?!?!

The filmmakers are 3 for 3 and if you think I'm going to see the fourth movie when it comes out, then you dear reader is absolutely correct.

You can read my review for John Wick and John Wick 2 here and here

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