After much anticipation (and delays), Keanu Reeves' now-iconic gun-fu, tuxedo-wearing mercenary is finally coming back to the big screen. Ahead of the theatrical debut of John Wick: Chapter 4 on March 24, a carefully curated number of critics and fans got a chance to watch the movie ahead of everyone else. To no one's surprise, everyone is singing John Wick 4 praises.
Collider's Therese Lacson referred to the fourth John Wick film as "an action-packed, bloody, kill-fest," while Steve Wintraub claims that "you are not prepared."
Here's a round-up of all the early reactions to John Wick: Chapter 4:
I had reservations about John Wick: Chapter 4's nearly three hour runtime, but the movie earns it. It's an epic with smart pacing that never lets the action feel exhausting, and the set pieces are phenomenal. Great cast of series newcomers, but Donnie Yen is the MVP. #JohnWick4 pic.twitter.com/xyMbLXmXUM
— Eric Eisenberg (@eeisenberg) March 6, 2023
#JohnWick4 is incredible. A symphony of controlled and carefully choreographed violence. Every shot in this movie is interesting. The cast is great. The action is beyond impressive. And with such a long running time, it never feels as though I want less of what's taking place. pic.twitter.com/Uw0m7gpRyH
— Aaron Neuwirth (@AaronsPS4) March 6, 2023
John Wick: Chapter 4 is absolutely HUGE. Yes, it's long, but its outrageously good set pieces more than make up for it. A slick, brutal and stylish action epic that sees Keanu Reeves push himself further than before, and with moments that'll have fans talking... #JohnWick4 pic.twitter.com/6zNg6c3KX5
— Ian Sandwell (@ian_sandwell) March 6, 2023
Brawny, bold & badass, #JohnWick4 brilliantly balances vested stakes with an absolutely spectacular, high octane thrill ride. A soaring, searing, scorching chapter in the saga. The wildest time you’ll have at the movies this year. A pure adrenaline rush. pic.twitter.com/eUmJRfnwJw
— Courtney Howard (@Lulamaybelle) March 6, 2023
#JohnWick4 absolutely rocks, start to finish. Keanu Reeves finds new ways to impress with stunning action and surrounds himself by incredible franchise newcomers.
Chapters 1-3 world-built and Chapter 4 could run with all of it.
An epic big screen blast. CINEMA! pic.twitter.com/KUo69tIQys
— The Brandalorian (@BrandonDavisBD) March 6, 2023
#JohnWick4 is action cinema at its finest. This breathtaking, bloody and ballistic ballet delivers a bone-crunching crescendo to one of the greatest action franchises of all time. Pure power, #JohnWick4 is as exhilarating as it is exhausting. Reeves' Wick transcends icon status. pic.twitter.com/1tn6syfz6E
— Simon Thompson (@ShowbizSimon) March 6, 2023
#JohnWick4 is, at least from a technical pov, one of the greatest Hollywood action movies ever made. It's visually gorgeous w/ stunningly complicated & creative setpieces. I honestly don't know how they safely did some of these scenes. It's a towering artistic achievement. pic.twitter.com/LljisftZBp
— Scott Mendelson (@ScottMendelson) March 6, 2023
#JohnWick4 is the best movie I've seen in ages!
It's like a Greek epic that's, yes, full of unparalleled action (and guns), and the set pieces are phenomenal. But it's also about relationships and love. What a breathtaking, heartrending story! I can't wait to see it again. pic.twitter.com/n5cJjWa73B
— Vanessa Armstrong (@vfarmstrong) March 6, 2023
John Wick: Chapter 4 is literally the biggest and longest in the series. As per the numbers, John Wick: Chapter 4 has the largest production budget with an estimated $90 million allocated to it. In comparison, the first John Wick movie only cost a maximum of $30 million. At triple the cost, it's understandable if Lionsgate Films is expecting a bigger box office take. The current record holder is John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum, which made more than $320 million at the global box office.
With that said, the early reactions to John Wick: Chapter 4 is a good sign after fans expressed concern that it wouldn't do as well due to its massive runtime. At nearly three hours long, some feared that John Wick: Chapter 4 might run out of steam midway.
There's also the fact that most movie franchises tend to fizzle out after their third film.
Thus, it's comforting to know that Chad Stahelski and the rest of the John Wick team appear to have succeeded in keeping audiences entertained for the entire 169-minute run of the film.
Considering that John Wick: Chapter 4 is likely headed towards, at the very least, the $400 million box office category, we're expecting John Wick 5 to be confirmed shortly after.
In the meantime, fans can look forward to the franchise's first spin-off, Ballerina, starring Ana de Armas. The upcoming film doesn't have a premiere date yet but it's expected to feature a fight between Reeves and de Armas.
As for Stahelski's future projects, fans shouldn't hold their breath on the live-action Ghost of Tsushima adaptation. It's likely going to take a monumental effort to get it made, especially since Stahelski wants to have an all-Japanese cast.