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Everyone's favorite dog-loving killing machine is back for his highly anticipated threequel,
and now we've been left to piece together the puzzle of another pulse-pounding final
Here's the ending of John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum, explained.
Parabellum follows the satisfying formula of the previous Wick flicks, so the amped-up
events of Act 3 don't come as a total surprise.
In Morocco, The Elder, the bigwig in The High Table, a super-serious worldwide council of
crime lords, kicks off the film's final act by giving Wick a choice.
He can kill Continental NYC manager and Wick ally Winston and live his remaining days as
a High Table hitman.
Or he can die in the Sahara.
After a gruesome act of solidarity, slicing off his ring finger and giving his wedding
band to The Elder, Wick heads to the Continental, where a surprising switcheroo awaits him,
courtesy of The High Table.
Every Wick fan knows that there are two rules in the Wickverse that carry serious consequences
if they're broken: not honoring a "marker" which is a blood-bound oath and, most importantly,
conducting assassination business on any Continental property around the globe.
In Chapter 3's closing act, a mysterious figure known as The Adjudicator voids the latter
law, declaring the NYC Continental as "deconsecrated" in order to send heavily armored High Table
thugs into the hotel.
These super-soldiers are tasked with taking down John Wick, since Wick chose not to take
down Winston, despite the whole cutting-off-his-own-ring-finger thing.
This armored assault doesn't work, of course, and, after much fancily-choreographed grappling,
Wick defeats the High Table goons and The Adjudicator's hired assassin, Zero, and his
blade-happy crew.
After the dust settles, The Adjudicator agrees to let Winston stay in the safety of the hotel,
but lets Winston know that Wick is still very much a thorn in the High Table's side.
What Winston does next is a bit ambiguous, but it sure looks like betrayal at first glance:
In the swanky rooftop garden of the Continental, last seen in Chapter 2, Winston suddenly shoots
Wick several times, causing him to fall to the alley below.
Did Winston really intend to kill Wick?
It's left unclear, but there's certainly an argument to be made that Winston would have
just shot Wick in the head if he truly wanted him dead, instead of shooting him in the bulletproof
suit he received from The Elder.
Plus there's the Tick Tock Man all-too-conveniently waiting nearby to help escort Wick's body
away, not to mention the exchange between Continental concierge Charon and Winston where
Charon assures his boss that everything's "in place."
Winston's plan, it appears, was to fake Wick's death with the help of The Bowery King and
then use Wick to try and take down The High Table.
With this in mind, and Wick's fall being somewhat slowed by awnings outside the Continental,
a building Winston knows better than anyone, Wick's survival at the end can't just be a
case of good fortune.
Further evidence of this risky plan comes early, when Wick strategically shoots an underworld
doctor in such a manner that it appears as if he was trying to kill him, but he's left
If Wick knows how to convincingly fake-kill somebody, Winston probably does as well.
Bottom line: If Winston wants to take down The High Table, he knows the only man capable
of it is Wick, the unstoppable "boogeyman" every trained killer knows and respects.
The real question is whether or not Wick, who genuinely seemed surprised when he was
shot by Winston, was in on it.
Did Wick fake his reaction?
Did Wick and Winston work this all out off-screen, during, say, the "DECONSECRATED" montage featuring
the Mad Men-meets-Suicide Girls receptionists?
We don't know for sure, but it's a safe bet that Winston chose to save Wick's life by
faking his death, at least temporarily.
With no evidence of his demise, Wick's in the same place he was at the end of Chapter
2: excommunicated and wanted by every killer-for-hire in the Wickverse.
But this time, Wick appears to be done running, and is likely eager to turn the tide against
the all-powerful High Table.
As Charon puts it to Winston after Wick's rooftop tumble: "Well played, sir."
After Winston's supposed betrayal, Wick's fate is unknown to The High Table until The
Adjudicator sees that the super assassin's body has gone missing.
In a twist that everybody and their pitbull saw coming, it turns out that Wick is alive,
having found refuge in The Bowery King's new hideout.
The Bowery King, sliced seven times by Zero, a callback to when he hooked Wick up with
seven bullets back in Chapter 2, tells Wick he's "pissed off."
Wick agrees with that sentiment, setting up what's sure to be another beautifully choreographed
and absurdly violent installment in John Wick: Chapter 4.
Nothing's official regarding John Wick 4 yet, but director Chad Stahelski told Entertainment
Weekly in 2018 that the Wick well hasn't run dry.
"If people go see the movie, and it makes money, and they came back to us, Keanu and
I have ideas for days."
Interestingly enough, Stahelski later told Indiewire that, despite all appearances, the
end of John Wick 3 wasn't necessarily intended as a cliffhanger.
The trusty Wick formula, according to Stahelski, demands that when the end credits roll, Wick
is either left alive and hunted by the deadliest people on the planet, or he's dead as a doornail.
"There's no escape for you."
The director told Indiewire,
"Do you think he's going to ride off into the f---ing sunset?
He's killed 300 f--king people and he's just going to [walk away], everything's okay?
If you're this f---ing guy, if this guy really exist[ed], how is this guy's day going to
He's f---ed for the rest of his life.
It's just a matter of time."
The somewhat ambiguous ending to Chapter 3 will likely get cleared up in Act 1 of John
Wick 4.
But until then, our artisanal gold coins are on Winston waging a "skirmish," with Wick's
help, on the seemingly invincible High Table.
"You've got a nasty surprise comin'."
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Explaining The End Of John Wick 3

624 Folder Collection
黃勝謙 published on July 11, 2019
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