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This Review Reveals Minor Details About the Plot.


John Wick: Chapter 4 on IMDb

Plot Overview

Vive la Francevicious dogtombstone“John Wick: Chapter 4” takes up where “Chapter 3: Parabellum” left off. The film opens in New York City, home of the notorious Continental Hotel, and moves to Osaka, Japan; Paris, France; and Berlin, Germany. Titular character John Wick (Keanu Reeves) is relent­lessly pursued by world-class assassins under the umbrella of The Table. They're, further­more, reinforced by mercenaries, opportunists, and a dog. To escape his persona non grata status, he must acquire sponsor­ship for single combat with Marquis Vincent de Gramont (Bill Skarsgård.) The winner will be cleared of his indebted­ness to The Table. The loser gets a fancy tombstone.


royal flushOne of Kenny Rogers's songs concerned a chance meeting with “The Gambler” on a train, who offered the passenger the advice that “the secret to surviving is knowing what to throw away and knowing what to keep.” The refrain of the song goes:

You've got to know when to hold 'em, Know when to fold 'em, Know when to walk away, Know when to run. You never count your money when you're sittin' at the table. There'll be time enough for countin' when the dealin's done.

This wisdom of the gambling man's repartee is old as the hills and was passed on by a raconteur, Agur in Proverbs 30:1, whose four meta­phors offered the same life advice as did Rogers's Gambler. That we find in, (Prov. 30:29-31) “There be three things which go well, yea, four are comely in going: A lion which is strongest among beasts, and turneth not away for any; A greyhound; an he goat also; and a king, against whom there is no rising up.”

We have Agur's “lion which is strongest among beasts, and turneth not away for any,” and we have Rogers's “know[ing] when to hold 'em.” In our movie we find a black tracker/bounty hunter (Shamier Anderson) come to Osaka Continental Hotel to be told he can't bring his dog. He insists it's a “comfort pet.” Right!

We have Agur's “king, against whom there is no rising up,” and we have Rogers's “Know[ing] when to fold 'em” A king who knows when to give in to his subjects doesn't experience any uprising. There's a critical point at which Wick holds his fire though being fired upon. His situation required some subtlety James Bond style as in a Gordon McDonell novel:

what better way of camouflaging yourself than to be nice to every­one? If you were going to do some­thing, especially spying, do it 100 per cent or not at all, because there will always be some­one who will beat you at it other­wise. And you can't afford to be beat in that game. An honest to God out and out spy had to be a very brave man because he was all on his own, completely, with no one to back him up if he failed, as he was almost bound to do in the end. (172)

dwarf goatWe have Agur's “he goat also” and we have Rogers's “Know[ing] when to walk away.” The desk girl at the Osaka hotel though a fighter knew when to walk away after witnessing a trained assassin kill her father.

We have Agur's “greyhound” and Rogers's “Know[ing] when to run.” In confined spaces Wick could hold his own against the assassin teams, but out in the open, with his location and bounty being broadcast far and wide, it was open season on him with unlimited takers. His best, his only, option was to high­tail it on out of there.

The gambler gave the advice:

You never count your money when you're sittin' at the table.
There'll be time enough for countin' when the dealin's done.

card playersIt ain't over till the fat lady sings. Here we find a good example not to consider the game over until the final play is done. We find a similar sentiment expressed in a Vu Tran novel: “It's like my father always said about poker. Even if all the cards are shown, the story is still incomplete. It'll always be incomplete. Live with it” (290).

Production Values

” (2023) was directed by Chad Stahelski. It was written by Shay Hatten and Michael Finch based on characters created by Derek Kolstad. It stars Keanu Reeves, Ian McShane and Bill Skarsgård. Reeves is still going strong in this his fourth installment. He's got some good backup actors as well.

Church serviceMPAA rated it R for pervasive strong violence and some language. The heavy, pervasive violence included a black getting surgically stabbed by an aristocrat to make a point, another black getting shot dead for his manager's failing, and a White getting strung up by the Ruska Roma for historical reasons unclear. My university town has banned noose displays in order to spare the feelings of snow­flakes. I went and saw the movie in our adjoining town that had no such ban.

Easter eggThe action was realistic, the result of competent technical advisors. The movie was engaging and didn't seem to drag despite its 2¾ hours run­time. An Easter egg comes after the end credits.

Review Conclusion w/a Christian's Recommendation

JW4 is worth seeing for action aficionados whether you've seen the other John Wick movies or not. Note from the characters that the Orthodox and the Catholics cross them­selves in opposite directions, or don't note it, what­ever. You can probably figure out on your own what you'll be getting in spades from this popular franchise.

Movie Ratings

Action factor: Edge of your seat intense action-packed. Suitability For Children: Not Suitable for Children of Any Age. Special effects: Absolutely amazing special effects. Video Occasion: Fit For a Friday Evening. Suspense: Keeps you on the edge of your seat. Overall movie rating: Four and a half stars out of five.

Works Cited

Scripture is taken from the King James Version. Pub. 1611, rev. 1769. Software.

McDonell, Gordon. Intruder From the Sea. Copyright 1953, by Gordon McDonell. New York: Little, Brown and Co. Print.

Tran, Vu. Dragonfish. Copyright © 2015 by Vu Tran. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 2015. Print.