by DICK CHENEY
dir. Chad Stahelski
John Wick’s wife Ellen Wick gives him a surprising gift after she dies. She makes sure that he can’t travel or go out for any longer than a few hours by sending him an untrained beagle puppy. It is his first dog, and he names her Daisy “of course.”
Because he doesn’t know any better, he lets the puppy go on the bed and the furniture. I mean, he doesn’t even crate train the thing, that is how clueless he is with dogs. He tells the dog he will get her some kibble, but he never actually does it; one gets the sense he’s too cool for the vagaries of a pet store. Over time you get the sense that as his wife’s illness worsened, she began to resent her husband’s superior health. The first meal he gives the dog is cereal for fuck’s sake.
Involved in these events is Theon Greyjoy. For some reason he kills John Wick’s dog, earning the disapproval of Tina Fey’s sleazy ex-boyfriend Dennis from 30 Rock, who plays the consigliere to a powerful crime lord that once employed Wick as an assassin.. “I once saw him kill three men in a bar with a Pilsner,” explains Theon Greyjoy’s father, a mob boss named Viggo (Michael Nyqvist).
I really wish I could have seen Keanu perform Hamlet, which he did in Manitoba. The gifs that came from that performance would have been astonishing. He almost shaved his head for the part, but he never does anything completely bald, much like how I never do anything completely with hair.
“I keep asking why her,” John Wick tells everyone, although he has killed a lot of people, so it seems like an odd question. Director Chad Stahelski rarely commits the cardinal sin of photographing the right, weird side of Keanu Reeves’ face.
Wick has a series of restrained scenes with character actors after that. He moves into a New York hotel called the Continental. Everyone notices how John Wick has changed. His eyebrows, for example, are not as robust as they once were. During his downtime Keanu watches short iPhone movies he has recorded of his wife. She’s like, “What are you looking at?” and he’s like “You.”
These scenes are a considerable relief because there is only one other woman in John Wick besides his dead wife, a female assassin named Perkins (Adrienne Palicki). Even though he has killed over 100 people looking for the guy who killed his dog, he lets her live.
But back to John Wick’s eyebrows – they have that smoothed back look, like he’s been in prison for too long and when he got out, he took the opportunity to dye them. Keanu Reeves is now 50 years old, do you really think that jet black is the natural color of his brows? He should look at maybe knitting them into a greasy weave?
It would be prudent to take the idea of a revenge movie in which the person seeking revenge has no visible emotions or enmity to its inevitable extreme. In John Wick 2 the puppy can come back and seek revenge on Theon Greyjoy/Reek, biting unceremoniously at the place where Theon’s genitalia used to be. This would probably be a great deal more entertaining than John Wick, kind of like how the second Homeward Bound was better because Sinbad played a vaguely racist-looking dog.
At the end of John Wick the titular character, who we can presume is a homophobe because he has no gay friends, is reunited with a slightly different dog. Sure, it’s not the beagle that his wife choose for him as her dying wish, but one bad dog is the same as another. “Let’s go home,” he says to the dog, by which time everyone else presumably left the theater to avoid watching any more of this piece of shit.
Dick Cheney is the senior contributor to This Recording. He has a lower rating than John Wick on Metacritic, which is a fucking travesty.
“Together” – London Bridges (mp3)
“My Heart” – London Bridges (mp3)