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Follow this link to purchase tickets for Green Hope Athletic events
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Max at the Movies: The Continental: From the World of John Wick

The popular John Wick series continues, and with it so does Max at the Movies, bringing a new edition: TV Shows.
Promo+photo+courtesy+of+Peacock
Promo photo courtesy of Peacock

With the release of “John Wick: Chapter 4” earlier this year, the franchise decided to go in a different direction, with the prequel series “The Continental: From the World of John Wick.” Does this spinoff have what it takes to reach the heights of the John Wick movies, or does it end up falling far behind the rest of the franchise?

The three-episode mini-series was created by Greg Coolidge, Kirk Ward and Shawn Simmons, and stars Colin Woodell as Young Winston Scott, Mel Gibson as Cormac, Mishel Prada as KD, Nhung Kate as Yen, Kate McGrath as The Adjudicator, Peter Greene as Young Uncle Charlie, Jessica Allian as Lou, Adam Shapiro as Lemmy, Jeremy Bobb as Mayhew and Ayomide Adegun as Young Charon. 

The series tells the story of the origin behind the iconic assassin hotel seen in the John Wick films, all told through the eyes of a young Winston Scott, as he’s dragged into 1970’s New York City to face a past he thought he had left behind. 

The best aspect of the series for me was the continuous world building that fit in perfectly into the world of John Wick. With each of the three episodes being an hour and thirty minutes in length, it allows for the plot and world building to expand more in ways the previous films did. 

Along with that, I really appreciated that the series told its own self-contained story, that not only featured lore from the John Wick films, but didn’t assume that the audience had the knowledge of those films to understand the show. On a story level, this to me is how more franchises should do prequels in the future. My biggest pet peeve with prequels is that they answer questions about the franchise I wasn’t asking, with answers that are equally unsatisfying. This series thankfully avoided that, and it made for a more pleasant viewing experience.

 Also, I’m a sucker for action movies and tv shows, and this show in particular provided a lot of carnage fueled action sequences that were mostly entertaining to watch. 

While the series provides plenty of action and world building that is expected from the world of John Wick, it never quite reaches the heights of the first four films. While the action and characters here are entertaining to watch, they’re nowhere near as memorable or as interesting as the John Wick films. 

In particular with the action, it’s well shot and choreographed, but it’s alongside films that are known for having groundbreaking action sequences, and that’s just not what these were. Also, the unique lighting, use of colors and camera angles is what made the John Wick action stand out, and here the action was very dimly lit and made it hard to see at certain points in time. 

As for the characters, they are all fun to go on this journey with, but none of them have a distinct personality trait about them that makes them memorable in the John Wick universe. Even though the series did help give some backstory to the character of Winston Scott, it made the previous version, played by Ian McShane, more interesting than this version played by Colin Woodell. 

This was my overall feelings on all of the characters featured in the show, in that they are serviceable enough to go on the journey of the story with, but they don’t really make much of an impact after watching the show. 

Also, while I think the show did a pretty good job being set in 1970’s New York City, the songs that were chosen for the show felt out of place with the scenes they were featured in. For instance, without going into specifics, there’s a scene in the first episode where Winston has to confront a character to gain information, while a funky 70’s disco song is playing over it. To me, it was very distracting and pulled me out of scenes constantly.

So overall, my feelings on this series were pretty mixed. On the one hand, I really appreciated the added world building that this show had to offer, and the fact that it told its own story without the weight of the rest of the franchise on its shoulders. 

But, the biggest thing holding this show back is the existence of the other John Wick films in terms of quality. The action and characters pop so much in those films, that it makes this show look not as good by comparison. The action and characters in the show just aren’t as interesting or memorable as those featured in the rest of the franchise. 

As just a standalone action series set in the world of John Wick, I enjoyed it for what it was, but for me it failed to live up to the previous four films in the franchise. I was really excited for this show, and it was kinda disappointing to say the least. 

I would recommend this for fans of John Wick, and just action movies and shows in general, but everyone else can probably skip this one. 

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About the Contributor
Max Spiegel, Staff Writer
Max Spiegel is a junior at Green Hope High School, and this is his second year on the staff of the GHFalcon.  Max made his way to Cary from his home state of New Jersey.  When not working on stories, Max spends his time relaxing, working at AMC Theaters, and playing golf. Max prefers to work in groups as it allows for ideas to be shared and reviewed. Max became a part of the staff due to his preference to work in groups in order to openly share ideas.  By joining the staff, he wants to expand his boundaries.
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