Reviews

‘John Wick: Chapter 3’ Review

John Wick 3 ups the ante in action, cementing itself among the trilogy elite. The role Keanu Reeves was born to play, this man will legitimately kill you with anything.

Super-assassin John Wick is on the run after killing a member of the international assassin’s guild, and with a 14 million price tag on his head – he’s the target of hit men and women everywhere.


Star Wars. Nolan’s Batman. The Godfather. Lord of Rings. These are just some of the defining trilogies of our time. Now enter John Wick. It’s honestly pretty damn crazy to look back at both these films and the star, Keanu Reeves and how far they have come. Keanu was always a fan favourite, notorious for being the worlds nicest man, and being a genuinely great action star. Then came along a little film titled John Wick, that changed the game forever. Fast paced action, great story telling and immersing us into this universe where every one from your mother to your dentist could be a high end assassin.

A book, knife, axe, belt, fists, guns, more guns, actually the most amount of guns. On land, in the dessert, on a horse, under water, seriously this man will kill you anywhere, anytime. 91 total kills, that’s how many lives John Wick takes in all sorts of ways. You might be saying, why is that number so low? Why doesn’t he kill more people than the sequel, well it’s simple really, Halle Berry steals a ton of those kills. Known as Sofia, Halle Berry and her two German Shepard’s are introduced into this incredible universe. When I first heard she was joining the John Wick world, I didn’t know how to react. She can be great, but I didn’t know if she would the right fit. Well, let me tell you, she kicks so much ass, joining Keanu in the biggest shootout of the film, where she’s taking no prisoners and appears to be a force to be reckon with. I won’t be shocked if she gets a spin off for herself. This universe is growing and I couldn’t be happier about it.

The movie opens up with John on the run after the events of Chapter 2, and it doesn’t take long for us to be introduced to Ernest played by the giant Boban Marjanovic. Watching Boban fight Keanu Reeves in the New York City library will be without doubt one of the best movie moments of 2019. If you don’t take the John Wick universe for what it is, you will have a hard time enjoying them. Yes, everyone is an assassin, yes there are gold coins and a hotel that permits you from any sorts of violence. What director Chad Stahelski has done though, is create a vast world, where you become immersed in it all. They build mythos and great backstories, and you learn to care for these characters especially John and his dogs. There are so many cool characters sprinkled throughout the world, from Winston (Ian McShane) the manager of The Continental, Bowery King (Laurence Fishburne), Charon (Lance Reddick), who they actually let shoot some guns this time around and it was awesome.

Like every new installment they introduced us to new zany characters like the films villains The Adjudicator (Asia Kate Dillion) and Zéro (Mark Dacasos). Zero is on par with John Wick, and watching them kick the living shit out of each other was a real treat. Here’s the thing, Zero is like the worlds biggest John Wick fan, so complementing him for killing his protégés, and even for kicking his ass was such a unique and hilarious concept. The ending even reminded me of a video game, where John is climbing levels fighting sub-bosses until he got to the final and top platform where Zero was waiting. This movie doesn’t let you breathe, it’s a non-stop adrenaline rush, where the body count is sky-high. I still think it’s insane that Keanu Reeves is doing what he’s doing after everything he’s been through in Hollywood, cementing is legacy as one of the best action stars this world has ever seen.

Overall John Wick 3 is just a ton of fun, it builds on an already rich foundation, and you just want to keep watching Keanu Reeves kill people. The action is always so crisp and clean and so well executed, that it’s no surprise how many action films are stealing the John Wick method. Expect to see a lot more of these films, and if you haven’t checked out this series yet, do yourself a favour and check them out!

John Wick Chapter 3 = 91/100

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‘John Wick 3’ Trailer

He’s legit killing dudes with books.

Super-assassin John Wick is on the run after killing a member of the international assassins guild.


It would be scary to be in a Staples with John Wick. Actually anywhere in the world. The man who can kill you with just about anything returns in the first trailer for the third part in this glorious action trilogy. Expectations are high, the world was waiting for this to drop all week, and let me be the first to say, it didn’t disappoint.

They’ve upped the budget and you can tell. From the beautiful cinematography, it’s crazy that this is the first thing I mention about the trailer, but it looks stunning. The palette and the colour scheme is truly something special. The way they have shaped this universe which depicts every other person as a world renowned killer, these colours really make up this great universe. These are more than just cheesy action movies, they have created a compelling story, and compelling characters. When you through in impeccable cinematography it’s a recipe for one fantastic dish.

I’ve always had a sweet spot for Keanu Reeves, he’s a world class nice guy and has been making movies that I have loved for 30 years now. He’s becoming one of the best action stars ever and I think the character of John Wick himself is climbing the ranks very fast as one of the most badass action heroes we have ever seen.

Poor Boban Marjanovic who will fall victim to John Wick by I guess, death by book. I actually don’t feel bad for him, it’s my dream to be killed by John Wick in a movie. The larger than life athlete is making his movie debut in this and it’s great because he’s such a gentle giant and watching him play basketball is one thing. Fighting John Wick, that’s a whole other ball game.

I can’t say enough good things about it. With these trailers they don’t even show us a ton, you know the kill count is going to sky rocket in this installment. The trailers will just be the tip of the killing spree iceberg. He’s killing dudes with books, on horse in the desert, and who knows what else. Oh yeah, he’s now trained his dogs to kill people.

People often talk about trilogies that leave a mark and a legacy on this world. Lord of The Rings, Nolan’s Batman, well this is going down as one of the all time greats.

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Basketball Movie All-Stars


“Basketball is my favourite sport. I like the way they dribble up and down the court”

Basketball fans! It’s that time of the year again, NBA All-Star weekend is looming and I thought I would take it upon myself to have a little fun. Movies and basketball, two things I hold dear to my heart, two things I’m very passionate about. So I thought it would make complete sense to combine these two passions into a fun little exercise. I have picked 10 of the very best basketball players from movies. From there I decided to make two all-star teams and have them battle it out in a winner takes all game, because well I guess I have to much free time on my hands. Side note, I didn’t choose any players that were played by an NBA player. Seeing how it just didn’t make things fair. Sorry Jesus Shuttlesworth maybe next time.

The East All-Stars
Jimmy Chitwood (Hoosiers) — Player Comparison = TJ McConnell
Clutch, the one word to describe both Jimmy Chitwood and TJ McConnell. Hoosiers, what a classic. Jimmy Chitwood, the soft-spoken lights out shooter from Hickory Indiana. Maybe the first player ever, to be considered to have ‘ice in his veins’. With the game on the line who else do you really want taking the last shot? The answer is pretty simple, it’s Jimmy baby! One of the best things about this movie, the fact that the Indiana Pacers sometimes rock theses incredible Hickory throwback jerseys! TJ McConnell on the other hand has TWO game winners this year, without question the most underrated clutch player in the NBA right now. Squint your eyes and watch both videos, you would swear they are the same person. TRUST THE PROCESS!!!

Spaceman (Sunset Park) — Player Comparison = Tristan Thompson

“It’s time to get loud, it’s time to represent, Sunset Park what time is it!!” Only known as “Spaceman” was played by a super young Terrence Howard, in this 1996 lesser-known movie, Sunset Park. About a New York City high school team, that like most sports movies must find themselves and come together as a team to finally reach their true potential. Spaceman just like Tristan Thompson was a beast on the boards, and was the energy, glue guy of the team. Spaceman was quiet and kept to himself mostly, having difficulties communicating with his teachers and his teammates. Once he finally opens up, he becomes unstoppable on the boards and a vital part of the teams success in the movie.

Quincy McCall (Love & Basketball) — Player Comparison = Derrick Rose

“Who you going to the dance with anyway? Spalding?

This movie man. Love & Basketball straight up pulling on your heartstrings! Remember how good this movie actually was? Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan killed it in this. Quincy McCall, what a beast! The only reason I’m comparing him to Derrick Rose is, much like Rose who has had multiple injuries and set backs in his career, it just reminds me on Quincy’s story. He was almost on top of the mountain, when a devastating knee injury finished his career. He could never really reach his true potential, much like Rose now (Sorry Derrick). This scene though, gets me every time.

Timo Cruz (Coach Carter) — Player Comparison = Lou Williams

Timo!! He is instant offence baby. A tortured soul in this movie, always trying to prove himself, while juggling the hardships of his personal life. Timo would have made a great sixth man for this game, much like Lou Williams. A great streaky shooter, deadly from the corner, Timo Cruz was one of my favourite characters from Coach Carter. Yah I put him on this list over Damien Carter! Timo is willing to die for his team, and I love that about him. This is the type of guy I would want on my team. Remember how many push-ups and suicides that guy did, just to get back on the team? That’s why he’s on this list, and well because he was awesome. I also totally forgot Channing Tatum was in this movie!

Scott Howard Aka Teen Wolf — Player Comparison = Russell Westbrook

Okay, okay, okay. I know what you’re thinking. Really, Russell Westbrook? Yes! This wolf could do it all on the basketball court. He could even surf on top of a moving van!! Rebounding, passing, dunking, honestly Scott Howard could do it all. Just like my man Russell Westbrook, he would have been a triple double machine, if he didn’t realize that he could win without becoming the wolf (what a shame). Howard plays the brand of basketball I love, rough and tumble basketball. Do you remember some of the fouls in the finals in this movie? Straight up murder people! He is the spark plug of the East squad, and team captain no doubt. He is odds on favourite to win All-Star MVP. What an insane concept for a movie though, and lets not speak of the sequel. Damn you Jason Bateman.

The West All-Stars

Billy Hoyle & Sidney Deane (White Men Can’t Jump) — Player Comparison = JJ Reddick & Jamaal Crawford

These two guys are a package deal. I don’t care what anyone says! Without question my favourite basketball movie, and these two guys really could play. I decided on Reddick and Crawford because to me it just felt right, ironically enough they are actual teammates in real life. Billy Hoyle will out work anyone on the court and he doesn’t want to admit it, but is a knock down shooter. Sidney Deane, no one in any movie ever, has looked as stylish when playing basketball as Wesley Snipes did in this movie. His outfits are on point, and now lets get to his game, unorthodox to say the least, but just an overall great scorer. The West team has instant chemistry, but it could derail them in the end, seeing how they could have a side bet going, that could ultimately hurt the team. Don’t bank on Woody Harrelson going into the dunk contest. Everything you need to know about this movie is in the scene below. Also, if they remake this movie, I want Chris Pratt for Hoyle and Michael B Jordon for Deane! 

Kyle Watson (Above The Rim) – Player comparison = Kyrie Irving

Handles for days! Without a doubt a show off, Kyle Watson was the original Kyrie Irving. Could be a burden to the West team if he doesn’t share the rock. The opening scene in Above The Rim is the reason I never learned how to dunk, still chilling to this day. Kyle just like Kyrie is a playmaker, who is always looking to score the ball. Could be looking at the high-scorer of the game.

Junior Battle (Coach Carter) — Player Comparison = Serge Ibaka

He was the best player on Coach Carter’s team, the heart and soul of it too. Junior Battle was an all-around solid player. Shot blocking, mid-range jumper, could finish around the rim, just like Serge. Junior found himself in an unusual spot, after the top two scorers from the previous season left the team. The only big on this West squad, looking forward to the big man battle we have always wanted to see; Spaceman vs. Junior!

Bill Murray (Space Jam) Player Comparison = Brian Scalabrine

Hear me out people! Bill Murray in the limited minutes he played, in the biggest basketball game this world has ever seen, deserved a spot on a roster. He’s a team player, who is going to get the other guys hyped for this game! Some times you need that on your roster, sure he will be a defensive liability, but it’s an all-star game. NOBODY PLAYS DEFENCE! Scalabrine, the white mamba was crucial to the Celtics winning a title, and he was the hype man for the team. Bill Murray is also an underrated passer, and is looking for the all time all-star game assist record. Space Jam, a time in my life when I found myself having a weird fascination with bunnies. Tell me I wasn’t the only one?

The Coaches

I would have loved to have Birdie from Above The Rim, who was played by Tupac, but obviously that can’t happen (RIP). So coaching the West will be Ken Carter (Sam Jackson) and coaching the East, I’m going with Norman Dale (Gene Hackman). Both different in styles and at the end of the day, it will be interesting to see how the players react to their coaching styles.

The Game

I’m having a tough time picking a winner here. All I know is, if the game is close down the stretch, you know Jimmy Chitwood is knocking down a game winner. That is a fact, they are running the picket fence for Jimmy and he’s knocking it down. Hoyle and Sidney will be tough to handle together, so honestly I don’t know! Teen Wolf himself, gets the rare all-star game triple double, before turning back into Scott Howard, for the final minutes of the game, which hurts the East team. For the 10 people reading this, let me know which squad is coming out victorious! At the end of the day I’m probably going with the team that has a werewolf on it, just saying.

Reviews

John Wick’s Back & You’re Gonna Be In Trouble

‘John Wick: Chapter 2’ delivers another dose of non-stop beautiful action and this time around he’s finally back.

john-wick-goes-walking-his-dog-in-new-photos

“People keep asking if I’m back and I haven’t really had an answer. But, yeah, I’m thinkin’ I’m back.” Well this time around he’s fully back baby, and he’s kicking all sorts of ass. Chad Stahelski is back directing the sequel and this guy knows how to shoot action.

Known as the “Boogeyman” he is feared more than the devil himself, and Wick uses that to his advantage while mowing down his adversaries. This time around we find out hero, Wick (Keanu, if you don’t know that by now shame on you), trying to once again enjoy retirement after the events of John Wick. He’s got a new dog, and finally has his car back, but it needs a little fine-tuning. I lied it has been smashed to shit and it needs a lot of work, but Wick is still super pumped to have it back in his life. He’s relaxing in his beautiful home, enjoying a fine glass of wine, when there is a sudden knock on his door, and in walks Santino D’Antonio. Played by Riccardo Scamarcio. Who honest to god is a budget Jude Law. I think they might have asked Jude Law to play this role and he passed, so the studio was like HEY, lets just get a guy who looks exactly like him and maybe people won’t notice! Any who, D’Antonio isn’t one of Wick’s drinking buddies, as he is there to cash in a blood oath from John. Long ago in order to “get out” of that life, John made a blood oath, and in this world you can never turn your back on such things or you’ll be up shits-creek. When John refuses at first, well you all aren’t stupid you know where this was ultimately going.

So now Wick is back immersed into this world, that we kind of got a taste of in the first one, but in Chapter 2 the film does a great job expanding this universe and showing more of the mythology behind it. This underworld of hit men and women, and assassins is hiding in plain sight to the outside world, almost invisible and it works really well. These people have their own special kind of currency that pays for their special hotels, guns, tailored suits, and anything else one might think of when trying to kill someone. The Continental is the hotel where all of the baddies go, with one rule, no bloodshed while you are on the premise or there is hell to pay. We run into some familiar faces, Ian McShane is back playing the manager of the hotel Winston, and Lance Reddick (Daniels, from The Wire, side note watch The Wire if you haven’t. Best TV show ever). He plays the concierge Charon. As we soon find out there are hotels like this all over the globe, as our story takes us to Rome for a bit of the movie. Give someone a gold coin, whether it’s a homeless person, a tailor, a sommelier, or a book keeper and good things usually happen. I thought this was a neat concept as Wick was able to make his way through Rome getting everything he needed without saying a word pretty much.

Essentially the plot of the movie is, John has to repay this blood oath, which involves him killing Santino’s sister Gianna (Claudia Gerini) so Santino can take her place at the “table”. That’s pretty much it; this movie didn’t really need an ingenious plot, just a reason for John Wick to come back into the limelight. While in Rome we meet Gianna’s top body guard, once a friend of John’s, Cassian (Common) Not really known for his action chops, but my god. Keanu and Common actually have an incredible hand-to-hand fight sequence in this movie, which will probably go down as the fight scene of the year. Stahelski really knows what he is doing when choreographing a fight scene, it’s shot super tight and close, without a BILLION edits and cuts, like most movies do these days, and that just makes it feel way more real and authentic. It was such a raw and powerful fight scene, and I didn’t know Common had this in his arsenal as an actor, which made me respect it even more. Another character we get introduced to is Ares (Ruby Rose) who doesn’t speak ONE WORD in this entire movie, and I still hated everything about her. Maybe it was the stupid faces that she was making, or the fact she just felt really out of place. She’s great in OITNB, but in this universe I just felt like she didn’t belong and I was happy when she got her just dessert.

These movies borrow a lot from John Woo, the legendary marital artists director, but instead of kung Fu, these movies are gun Fu. Reeves uses such precision and accuracy with his gun, at such close range. To me it almost felt like he had a sword in his hands rather than a gun, going from one enemy to the next like a hot knife going through butter. John Wick, the master of the double tap, even after pouring in countless bullets into someone’s chest, he’s always got to finish them off, with one to the noggin just to be sure. It’s actually quite beautiful when you see it on screen. Finding myself mesmerized by each action sequence and just how colorful and stylish everything was. It felt real to me, because Keanu himself looks like he knows his way around a gun, and again it adds that layer of authenticity to the movie. No one else could play John Wick. From the action stuff, to even delivering corny ass lines like he does. You can really tell Keanu is having a blast playing this character and I don’t blame him. I can’t say enough good things about this movie. After all of it was said and done I tallied up 125 body bags for John Wick, each one of them unique in there own way, including a few with a pencil, yes you read that correctly, this man is killing people with pencils in this one.

Laurence Fishburn, who starred in the Matrix trilogy alongside Reeves, makes a brief cameo in this, and I thought it was the perfect amount of screen time for him. I wonder how many Matrix jokes were made onset when those two were together.

What can I say; this movie was everything I wanted it to be and more. Did I know going in there wouldn’t but much to the plot, yes. Some horrid dialogue at some parts, which actually included some sign language. You can thank Ruby Rose for that one. That’s not the point of going to see this movie. You go to see this movie so you can watch Keanu Reeves kick all sorts of ass, and these movies are doing action like no one else right now. People should be taking notes or asking the team behind these movies for some pointers, because I really hope John Wick 3 and 4 and 5 all happen. Just imagine what he could do with a pen.

Check ya later,

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews — John Wick: Chapter 2 = 84/100

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It’s Time To Take Keanu Reeves Seriously

With John Wick: Chapter 2 upon us, it’s time to put Reeves in the upper echelon of action stars.


When people talk about the great action star, usually someone like Sly, Arnold, Will Smith, Cruise, Bruce Willis or Dwayne Johnson will come out of their mouth. These are the best of the best, the Mount Rushmore of action stars some would say, but someone is slowly creeping up on them, and he’s looking for that double tap. Much like the character John Wick, Keanu Reeves is ascending the ranks of action star immortality. Reeves himself has always been kind of an enigma, he’s humble, quiet and keeps to himself when it comes to Hollywood, unlike some of these other larger than life action stars. With his latest outing as the double tapping badass John Wick, it’s time for people to stop underrating this man, and start taking him a little more serious.

Keanu is 53 years old; I know he doesn’t look a day over 40! He’s been doing action movies since 1991 when he was Johnny Utah, in one of the most under appreciated action movies of all time. It’s fun, it doesn’t take itself to seriously but most important it’s a fantastic movie. I’m talking about Point Break in case you were wondering, and it’s without question in my top 10 favorite movies of all time. (Lets just not talk about the remake please). With action stars, sometimes their biggest problem can be longevity. How long can they keep it up, before people start questioning if this old guy can do the things he’s doing on the big screen? Father time is undefeated my friends, but right now Keanu shows no signs of slowing down.

After Point Break, he traded in his surfboard for a bus pass in Speed. Remember how good Speed was? Honestly, Jeff Daniels, Dennis Hopper and young wildcat Sandra Bullock. Still holds up today, one of the great TV cable movies. If it’s on TV and you turn to it, tractor beam man, it will suck you right in. Keanu had a little more grit to his character in Speed, and it showed us a little range, again this was 1994, he was still relatively new to the action scene. This was also his first major box office hit, with Speed making just over 350 million worldwide. Fun fact, this movie actually won two Oscars, what a world we live in, that a movie about a speeding bus won two Oscars and it took Leo like a billion years to finally snag one.

Keanu took a little break from the action scene after Speed, until he became the one. Landing the role of Neo (thanks to Will Smith, turning down the role) in the Matrix, which at the time revolutionized the movie making industry. Say what you want about the Matrix trilogy, the first one changed so much for so many people. I’ll still never forget watching the bank scene for the first time, or Keanu dodging those bullets like he was The Flash. Overall the Matrix trilogy was a success, with Matrix Reloaded still being one of the 100 most financially successful movies of all time. When you look back on them, I don’t really think anyone else could have played Neo, that role was meant for Keanu.

But for some reason after the Matrix, it seemed like Keanu had a little stink on him, with not really getting any large Hollywood roles. Sure he was doing movies but nothing that really stuck out, certainly wasn’t involved in any more franchises or being part of a comic book universe. He did give us Shane Falco, and we are all thankful for that. A few kung-Fu movies like Man of Tai Chi and 47 Ronin, both above average movies in there own right, but nothing special.

I think that’s why, in 2014 when John Wick was released; everyone was so god damn surprised about it. It’s not like everyone had forgotten about Keanu Reeves, I just think people forget how awesome he can be. It was just so refreshing to see him back in his element, and the movie was the biggest surprise hit in 2014, a movie that was a nice call back to some of the great 80s and 90s action flicks. Like most great action movies, you don’t need the greatest story or plot, but just really good action sequences, in order to enjoy the movie. This is exactly what you got from John Wick, and the world fell in love with this character and immediately wanted a sequel, and now here we are 3 years later. So lets do John Wick: Chapter 2 a favor and go out and see it this weekend. The first one deserved to make more money, and this one deserves the attention that it will ultimately deserve.

Taking a look at the big picture, with longevity, box-office success, making great action movies, it’s time for the world to open up their arms to Keanu and welcome him into an elite club. I have a feeling that he’ll be back….

Check ya later.