Vigniche’s review published on Letterboxd:
If you thought John Wick was high stakes action film, you have no idea what's coming next. I'm not talking about Chapter 2, I'm talking about Chapter 3. That's the most essential contribution from Chapter 2, apart from the kickass action set pieces one would expect from it- to just set things up for something bigger and hopefully, better.
The best part about the first film was that it made it overtly clear that you were not watching an action film with a good plot, you were watching a clever action film with an original and epic central character. That character reappears this time, to do what he does best- Gun fu. He reluctantly goes on a killing spree, although we know he secretly craves it. There is a silly story to give John Wick's actions a reason, but there is also great preparation from Chad Stahelski to build a reliable franchise. The best thing about the film is not the outstanding action; we could see that coming. It is the way it finishes, owning the loyalty of whoever has remotely enjoyed watching the installment.
It is the little things that make John Wick: Chapter 2 retain the success of the franchise. The way the character is revered and decorated- literally and figuratively- makes you feel you know his legendary backstory without ever having to see it on screen. His reputation is never blown out of proportion as he endures so much pain while he gives it back with interest, to just prove he is certainly human.
I like how the world of John Wick is built on crime and crime alone. It is so artificial that it is palatable to watch the unbelievable events that unfold before you without having to bother what the consequences would be. There are no cops, no actual laws, only business.
The rivalry between John Wick(Keanu Reeves) and Cassian(Common) was very satisfyingly produced. It even gave some clues regarding their relationship in the past. Reeves is predictably explosive as Wick, although some of his dialogue delivery were more painful to watch than the blood-splattering violence. There are more dialogues that lack quality but the screenplay negates that with some fine humour here and there. A smart choice of subtitles is also worth mentioning. Oh, I forgot to mention the villain because that's how easily one can forget him. Riccardo Scamarcio doesn't leave enough impact as Santino D'Antonio, as another pitiful antagonist who manages to piss Wick.
I can't wait to watch John-Wick-without-privileges next. Get it rolling already.