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‘John Wick: Chapter 2’ Review: Keanu Reeves Kicks Ass (Again), And the Franchise Has Begun

‘John Wick: Chapter 2’ Review: Keanu Reeves Kicks Ass (Again), And the Franchise Has Begun

If you’ve seen “John Wick,” you know the legend: One time, the eponymous hitman (Keanu Reeves) killed three men in a bar with a pencil. “With a fucking pencil,” growls a Russian crime boss played by Peter Stormare in the opening minutes of “John Wick: Chapter 2,” moments before the unstoppable killing machine nicknamed “The Boogeyman” bursts through the door. Before Stormare can finish the anecdote, one of his lackeys interrupts him. “I know,” he says. “I’ve heard this one before.”

In the “John Wick” universe of action-movie pastiche, even the villains are fans of his work. And who could blame them? Overseen by the original “John Wick” team of director Chad Stahelski and screenwriter Derek Kolstad, the new movie contains the best ingredients of the 2014 original with a fresh set of outrageous showdowns, and even improves on its commitment to cartoonish mayhem in self-serious clothing. As relentless,

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