Forget Star Wars Episode VII - I’ve probably watched the trailer for John Wick more than any other trailer ever. It seemed like a film designed to be wired directly up to my pleasure-centres. Keanu Reeves is John Wick, the world’s best assassin, drawn out of retirement because someone killed the dog given to him by his dead wife. The trailer made the whole thing seem knowingly, indulgently bananas and I loved it. I couldn’t wait to see the film, even though I knew I’d built it up too much.
Well, to the film’s credit, I was only a tiny bit disappointed. The film didn’t maintain the frenetic pace of the trailer and, indeed, they’d already shown a lot of the film’s best set-pieces. But I still found myself squealing with glee (I’m a 36 year old man, I shouldn’t squealing with glee) at the action sequences and I genuinely enjoyed how quickly they got to the meat of the film while not entirely relying on the dead wife trope.