K e a n u
R e e v e s
But fast forward about 15 years later to 2014 and Keanu Reeves is staking his claim to crush the myth that lightning can never strike the same place twice. Mr. Reeves is back in a big way, baby! This time, filling the shoes of the dark and mysterious, legendary assassin, John Wick. This lone wolf, tragic soul of a character who is hell bent on revenge, seems to take off right where we left off in The Matrix. We've got some serious, mind-blowing action here with machine gunning flashes of non-stop, pure adrenaline. Our heads were spinning as the first film of John Wick, soon turned into a whirlwind of sequels with John Wick Chapter 2 and the Chapter 3 Parabellum film. Like a cinematic action Energizer Bunny, John Wick is like an unstoppable one man-war machine. He just keeps on going and going and going. A human Terminator if you will.
So, how does Keanu Reeves do it? You have to admire the man. At 55, he is so unbelievably cool as John Wick - in every way -
that it's unreal.
Destiny was calling.
In 1999 actor Keanu Reeves slammed onto movie theater screens all over the world with one of the best and most influential action/sci-fi movies of all time, the Matrix. The impact that this film would have, on the generation at that time was undeniable. It changed everything. The music, the fashions and the films were heavily influenced by this groundbreaking movie of its day. The Matrix was pure cinema gold. And right smack dab in the center of this swirling digital roller coaster, was Reeves' leather-shining hero, the sleek and powerful, "Neo". Standing tall and iconic, front row and center, along for the ride to glory.
Now make no mistake, Keanu Reeves was certainly not an unknown at this time. He already was a star in his own right, with blockbuster films to his credit such as the hilariously wacky "Bill & Ted" franchise, Francis Ford Coppola's gothic romance "Bram Stoker's Dracula" and the heart-pounding "Speed." But no doubt, it was The Matrix that transcended Reeves into a whole other stratosphere. Catapulting him and his ultra cool "Neo" into the stuff sci-fi legends are made of. That's quite an achievement that any actor could ever possibly wish for in one lifetime.
Multiple losses of loved ones in a short time frame are something that some people can never fully recover from. Most people can't emerge from the all consuming depression that grips them. A lot of people don't make it. But that is what makes this comeback for Keanu Reeves so incredibly special. It is actually a great inspiration to watch a man at the height of his fame and career to have to come to grips with real loss in his life, and somehow, unbelievably trudge on through to the other side and find himself once again. It's more than just a movie, it's a testament to Mr. Reeves strength and character as a human being. Let's face it, we all get older, at some point in time we will all have to deal with tragedy in one form or another, but the real question is, will we become irrevocably damaged and lose yourself in the process? Keanu Reeves is living proof that it doesn't have to be that way. We might be wrecked, hell, we might be trashed, mangled and crippled on the inside, but the point is, we keep moving forward. And when I see Keanu Reeves reign cool supreme again in John Wick , I am forever reminded that we can all come out the other side of any catastrophe, scars and all, and still do what we do best.
Maybe even do it better than ever before.
And if that ain't the true definition of cool,
I don't know what is.
- J. Shepherd
We, at Cool Magazine, felt compelled to place Mr. Reeves on this cover in a place of the highest honor of Cool. Let's put it this way, the how-to guide has now been written, published and sold. If you have any questions on cool, look no further, Reeves' character, John Wick wrote the book. His dark suits, almost elegant. With sleek, long dark hair that frames his face with the perfect rebelliousness. He wears his beard like a suit of thorned armor. The impenetrable look in his eyes is almost steel-like and now the coolness is complete. There is no doubt, Keanu has definitely found his calling. He commands your attention, when he is at the helm of an action film. From digital hero to the master of disaster, he excels at the art of action and it shows gloriously.
It seems the years have given Reeves a harder edge that really transcends well in the John Wick films. You have this character, a man who used to be one of the most feared, legendary assassins of all time. Since retired from his violent career to marry the love of his life only to lose her to illness. If that's not enough, an arrogant son of a mobster steals John's car and murders the puppy that was a present from his late wife, John unleashes the remorseless killing machine within and seeks revenge on all.
Keanu really seems to capture the pain of loss and grief that is John Wick. One can't help but draw some parallel lines to the tragedy Reeves had experienced in his own life over the years. In January 2000 Reeves and his then-girlfriend, Jennifer Syme, 29, buried their child, a girl named Ava, who had been stillborn at 8 months. The grief proved too much for their relationship, which ended several weeks later. 18 months later, Jennifer was killed in a car accident. It is said that Reeves found it very difficult coping with her death.
This is a lot to handle for anybody.