‘John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum’ Review — The Best Action Franchise Gets Better and Better

GameStop, Inc.

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum Review

The clock is ticking. After the blood-soaked events of John Wick: Chapter 2, the eponymous assassin played by Keanu Reeves has been excommunicated from the world of The Continental, the underworld society of assassins which John Wick was bound by a blood oath. With only an hour, John Wick must escape New York City before a bounty of 14 million dollars is placed on his head. That’s the setup for John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, the latest entry in the incredible action franchise from director Chad Stahelski. Over the course of two films, Stahelski has established John Wick as the premiere action series going and Chapter 3 proves that there’s just no slowing down this freight chain of action cinema. This is easily going to be the year’s best action film, and if anything comes along and surpasses it I shall kneel before the filmmakers and pledge my fealty. John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum just goes to show that the best action franchise in cinema can continue to just get better and better.

Now excommunicado under the orders of Winston (Ian McShane), head of the Continental’s New York location, all of the world’s deadliest assassins are out to claim the valuable bounty on John Wick’s head. When asked by his loyal concierge Charon (Lance Reddick) about Wick’s chances of survival with an army of assassins out for the kill, Winston wryly comments, “I’d say the odds are about even.” The third chapter of the John Wick saga starts out with a bang as the wounded assassin must fight for his life and scheme for safe passage outside of a city teeming with killers out for his head. Immediately, Stahelski and John Wick mastermind Derek Kolstad (who shares scripting duties with Shay Hatten, Chris Collins, and Marc Abrams) set the stage perfectly, establishing the film’s plot, John Wick’s desperate stakes, and all of the incredible action you’ve come to expect from a John Wick film.

In the opening race against time, Reeve’s wounded and weary Wick must take on an army of relentless assassins, including one incredibly fun fight with NBA big man Boban Marjanovich. The punches and kicks fly in a frenzy of meticulously choreographed action, escalating to guns, edged weapons, and some rather ingenious moments of lethal improvisation. You really get the sense that Stahelski and company are open to any ideas when developing the action sequences, just throwing ideas to the wall and which ever ideas stick they’ll then throw at Wick. The result is breathtaking action cinema, the kind of stuff action junkies want to mainline.

All of this action has consequences, and that’s the dominant theme of John Wick: Chapter 3 and the film isn’t subtle about it. Consequences come to New York in the form of The Adjudicator (Asia Kate Dillon), a bureaucratic supervisor working on behalf of the High Table of the Continental. The Adjudicator’s mission is simple: Punish those who have broken the rules of the Continental, including those who’ve aided Wick on his most recent rampage. Winston has a week to abdicate his role as head of the New York Continental. The Bowery King (Laurence Fishburne) is lashed for his role in aiding John Wick’s killing spree at the end of Chapter 2. To carry out the judgments, The Adjudicator enlists Zero (Marc Dacascos), a cat-loving sushi chef, to kill John Wick and his collaborators.

As consequences have come to New York City, John Wick has eluded those in pursuit and found his way to Casablanca. It’s there that he requires the help of Sofia (Halle Berry) in order to save his life from the bounty placed on his head. I won’t say any more about the plot details but this segment escalates into another incredible action sequence with Reeves and Berry battling more and more anonymous bad guys. In their fighting they’re assisted by Sofia’s secret weapon – her loyal assassin dogs. Oh yeah, Buster, that’s right. John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum gives the dogs their due. Wick’s canine compatriots are just as lethal as the army of assassins that our beaten down anti-hero must battle.

Like its predecessors, John Wick: Chapter 3 expands the mythology of the assassin underworld that is The Continental. But the film isn’t concerned with explaining every new wrinkle it has shown, opting instead to only show what’s relevant to the story. Each detail that expands this universe is like a sip of a fine, flavorful whiskey, not a throat-burning shot of generic hooch. The past is something that is very much a part of John Wick’s makeup, but the film doesn’t want to dwell on what’s not happening on the screen. That’s why Anjelica Huston’s brief appearance as The Director hints at more history than it explains as it moves the action forward. Parabellum pulls us deeper into the world of The Continental, illustrating clearly that the world is an inescapable vacuum. John Wick pulled off the impossible once and got out, but now that he’s back escape is impossible in this world of killers governed by rules bound by blood with deadly consequences whenever a rule is broken.

The world of The Continental wouldn’t be so appeal if wasn’t populated with such fascinating characters, and Chapter 3 introduces some great new antagonists for Reeves’ Wick. Asia Kate Dillon’s The Adjudicator is buttoned-down addition to this world, not exactly a killer herself but a figure whose presence creates an ominous sense of dread. Perhaps the biggest surprise of the film is the scene stealing turn by Marc Dacascos as Zero. Not only is this character a deadly, sword-wielding assassin, but he’s also John Wick’s biggest fan. Dacascos’ eyes widen, his serious demeanor is obscured by a gigantic smile when his character realizes that he’ll get to face off with John Wick. On top of some stunning fighting work, Dacascos is key to inject plenty of humor into the ultraviolent affair of this latest John Wick sequel. During the action-packed climax, Dacascos’ Zero watches like the fans in the theater as Reeves’ Wick battles with two assassins (played by Yayan Ruhian and Cecep Arif Rahman from The Raid and The Raid 2, which is just more catnip for action aficionados).

Watching John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum is a treat for action fans because it’s a film where you are seeing the best in the world perform incredible feats. You have the best action choreography, the best action performers, the best stunt drivers, and the best action director working today in Chad Stahelski. Sequels often suffer from a case of diminishing returns, expanding the world and making the action bigger but without the same weight that made audiences fall in love in the first place. That hasn’t happened with the John Wick films yet, and there’s no sign of fatigue present. There’s a lot of life left in this series. This isn’t the end for John Wick and the world of The Continental. I’m already planning on checking in again.

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum
  • Overall Score


Another incredible entry in action’s best franchise, John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum is an action film made by a team of performers working at the top of their game, providing fans with eye-popping action as Keanu Reeves’ famed assassin takes on an army of colorful antagonists in director Chad Stahelski’s latest action-packed masterwork.

Anytime Costumes

Leave a Reply

Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
Emmy Winner, Tasia Valenza ‘Gives Great Voice’

Most people no Emmy Award Winning Actress, Tasia Valenza from such...

Emilio Estevez and Original Cast Members Reunited for Disney+ ‘Mighty Ducks’

From Disney – BURBANK, CA (February 13, 2020)-  Emilio Estevez is...

‘We’ is a Dutch Film that Wishes it was Larry Clark’s ‘Bully’

The Dutch film, We takes place in a small, Dutch-Belgium border...

Event News Event Reviews
‘A Black and White Cookie’ A Play About Racial Harmony Hits NYC

Press Release – (New York, NY) – Ego Actus Theatre Company...

Katee Sackhoff Receives Vanguard Award at SOVAS – Interview

Katee Sackhoff has become a television and voice over icon in...

Adam Rocha Celebrates the Silver Anniversary of the San Antonio Film Festival

The San Antonio Film Festival (SAFilm) is celebrating 25 years of ...

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Marvel United
Marvel United – The First-Ever Marvel Game on Kickstarter

Marvel United, the first-ever Marvel game on Kickstarter brought to us...

The Kingdom of Wakanda Rises in Marvel Realm of Champions

Press Release – Today, Kabam revealed new details on the KINGDOM OF WAKANDA,...

Turtle Beach Atlas Aero Featuring Waves Nx 3D Audio

Hear what the little lamb said to the shepherd boy with...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
Shazam! 10: The Gingerbread War! Review

Title: Shazam! 10 Writer: Geoff Johns Pencils: Dale Eaglesham and Scott...

David Dastmalchian Teams Up with Dark Horse for ‘Count Crowley’ – Interview

Actor David Dastmalchian is the embodiment of turning one’s life around....

Neon Future Interview with Founder & Writer

A few months ago at WonderCon 2019, I had the honor...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
McCafé Frappé
McCafé Frappé in a Bottle is a Great Way to Start the Day

McCafé Frappé in a Bottle is the best way to start...

Consumable Gift List 2019
FBN Consumable Gift List 2019

Our Consumable Holiday Gift List 2019 – The best gift to...

LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition Headset
LucidSound Announces LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition Headset Pre-Order

LucidSound announces LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition headset pre-order opening November 19...

Automotives Football MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
LA Wildcats Fall to the Dallas Renegades in the Home Opener

Sunday, February 16, 2020 – In the second game of the...

Houston Roughnecks to Host XFL Championship Game

From the XFL – HOUSTON, February 13, 2020 – The XFL,...

Jeff Martin Opens Dream MMA School and is Set to Fight at Lights Out XF on March 13

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) veteran, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt and now...

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Return of Mothman (to Pahrump, NV)

Mothman goes home.

Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and back to normal?

Things get back to normal ?

Cultural Junkdrawer: The AVN special: 5 Questions for Porn Stars (and Porn adjacent)

CULTURAL JUNKDRAWER   5 Questions for Pornstars   So, once again,...

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Episode 34: Chris Prynoski

Whitney Grace is digging through her queue of old new stock...

Episode 33: Jerry Beck

Join Whitney Grace in this blast down memory lane with an...

Episode 32: Mathew Klickstein

I’m back and done explaining about the current state of my...

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Comedy Duo Ben Giroux and Jensen Reed Take Us, ‘Back To The 80s’

Two of the funniest men in show business, Ben Giroux (Hart...

James Maslow ‘Rush’es the Stage to Perform at Super Girl Surf Pro on Sunday

James Maslow is an American singer, actor and songwriter best known as the star of...

Jason Lazarus Talks about Composing the Music for ‘Teen Titans Go! vs Teen Titans’

Jason Lazarus is a Los Angeles based composer for film, television, and...