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In many ways, John  Wick: Chapter 2 is a perfect action movie sequel; it raises the stakes, continuing the brilliant action sequences and expanding the world and universe of the series. However, it’s the signature tone and style of the film that makes it so much fun, and what elevates the John Wick franchise in comparison to other popular action franchises. This is a saga that is cheeky and self aware, building a wholly unique and fascinating world of espionage and action, where every nuance and quirk is maximized to its entertainment potential.

John Wick (Keanu Reeves) is called back into duty after a revenge mission, and with his hand forced by the shadowy organization that he once worked for, Wick reluctantly returns to his former life to assassinate the leader of a crime ring. Rarely has an actor been so perfectly cast; Reeves is the perfectly gruff, charming action hero who’s steely nature fits perfectly within this bizarre world. The sequel populates Wick’s universe with a variety of memorable side characters, most notably a hilarious return from Laurence Fishburne.

On top of the film’s masterful universe building, there’s no shortage of brilliant action sequences. The film is relentless in it’s perfectly choreographed, expertly designed scenes that never last too long, and only increase in entertainment value as the film progresses. Between it’s clever humor, vast mythology, and mind blowing action sequences, John Wick: Chapter 2 is not only a worthy follow up to the original film, but an indicator that this is an action series worth following well into the future. Grade: -A