It’s been a while since I’ve seen a movie in a theatre. A number of things contribute to not going out from unreasonable ticket prices to overpriced concessions to generally uncivilized attendees who don’t know enough etiquette to keep their phones off and mouths shut while the show is playing. However, there are occasions where I still head out to a movie-plex to see stuff on a very large screen. Today was one of those occasions.
I loaded up with a hotdog, a small popcorn, and a “medium” unsweetened iced tea (I’m not sure what happened to drink sizes since my last outing, but when I got the “medium”, I figured I should have gotten a small, and worried about what would have come if I’d ordered a large. The “medium” must have been 32 ounces if not more and it barely fit into the cup holder in the seat.) I then made my way to the theater and sat in my favorite spot, third row center (you may not like to sit so close, but I’ve always felt this was the perfect spot to immerse oneself.) It was also convenient that the room only held two other people. It was a Saturday Matinee starting before 1PM, so it is probably understood that the R rating would frighten away some people who might want to take kids to something.
A seemingly un-ending list of previews was running when I sat down. I could easily have arrived 20 minutes late and still have missed nothing. I don’t remember a single preview, which is pretty bad if you’re a movie advertiser.
The movie itself is exactly what I needed. I liked it. A lot. Although, to sum up the basic premise, it might seem a little bit thin: A man takes on the Russian mob in revenge for stealing his car and killing his dog.
But, the basic premise does nothing to explain this film. Yes, it’s a revenge story. It’s a very well written revenge story. The story is told non-linearly which may not have been necessary, but was very effective.
The movie hits on a number of common denominator points. If you’re into action films, it’s an action film. If you’re into shoot ’em ups, it’s a shoot ’em up. If single minded vengeance films are your thing, this one has it. But, it’s a deeper film than that.
Every speaking character had a motivation. A reason for doing what they did. I never got the feeling that bad guys did things just because they were bad or evil. Each character had some depth to them that made them more than two dimensional. I hadn’t expected that in an action film.
I’m looking forward to seeing this again. Not just because I liked the film, but for a specific scene. In his seeking his target, John Wick ends up at an exclusive club. There are a number of different floors to the club. A couple of discoes, a bath-house in the basement, and so on. As Wick makes his way down through the club, one of the discoes has its security personnel dressed in black suits with bright red shirts. I’ll leave you to imagine how many survive…
Overall, this movie entertained on several points, and hooked me early. I could pick nits if I wanted, but the whole experience was enjoyable and anything I might normally have an issue with, I overlook, as my suspension of disbelief was fully engaged. The only points where I gave any pause is where I recognized actors from other roles, and I was delighted to see them.
I recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good shoot ’em up, or a good action flick. If you’re a Keanu Reeves fan, you will not be disappointed, and if you aren’t a Keanu Reeves fan you just might be surprised.