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Keanu Reeves only says 380 words in nearly 3 hours after cutting most of his John Wick 4 dialogue

Daisy Phillipson

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Keanu Reeves only says 380 words in nearly 3 hours after cutting most of his John Wick 4 dialogue

Featured Image Credit: A24/Album/Landmark Media/Alamy Stock Photo

After what felt like an eternity of waiting, John Wick: Chapter 4 dropped in theaters last week.

Critics and audiences alike have been praising the action-packed movie, which sees Keanu Reeves reprise his role as the titular assassin.

One detail that has the fans talking is the epic runtime, clocking in at a whopping two hours and 49 minutes with credits included.

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This is made all the more impressive by the fact that Reeves' character only says a total of 380 words throughout, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal.

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As said by the outlet: "As the John Wick movies sprawled in length, they got stingier with the main character’s dialogue.

"In the first instalment, clocking in at 101 minutes, Mr Reeves said a total of 484 words.

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"With a run time of 169 minutes, the fourth movie pushes three hours but features just 380 words by Wick."

And around 10 percent of these words are featured in the trailer, with the article saying it 'makes the hero seem almost chatty'.

It takes a talented actor to express so much with so little, but the 58-year-old star managed to pull it off with finesse, maintaining the elusive charisma the character is known for.

Director Chad Stahelski told WSJ that it was Reeves himself who is behind the low word count, having cut approximately half the dialogue written for his character in the early script.

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Keanu Reeves' character is a man of few words. Credit: Lionsgate
Keanu Reeves' character is a man of few words. Credit: Lionsgate

The filmmaker went on to highlight a scene in which Wick discusses a duel with villain Marquis de Gramont (Bill Skarsgård).

Though this started with a '50-50 exchange of dialogue', Stahelski said Reeves whittled it down to as few words as possible such as 'pistols' and 'no quarter'.

And his longest line of uninterrupted speech arrives with the following sentence: "You and I left a good life behind a long time ago, my friend."

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Co-writer Michael Finch said of Reeves: "It’s a shock when you work with him how dedicated he is to not speaking."

Instead of wordy monologues, Stahelski explained that the actor 'wanted to convey meaning with body language and facial microexpressions'.

"He isn’t just stoic," he said. "He’s mysterious, and the mystery lets the audience fill in the gaps."

The fourquel has been going down a treat with critics and audiences alike. Credit: Lionsgate
The fourquel has been going down a treat with critics and audiences alike. Credit: Lionsgate
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Though he doesn't say a lot, fans think the film is definitely worth it, especially given all of the stunt work training Reeves underwent to perform in the movie's action-packed fight sequences.

John Wick: Chapter 4 has been hailed a 'masterpiece of action cinema' and has smashed its previous box office record by collecting $73.5 million in its opening weekend.

If you haven't had a chance to see it yet, the film is out in cinemas now.

Topics: Film & TV, John Wick, Keanu Reeves, Film and TV

Daisy Phillipson
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