John Wick: Chapter 4 First Look Footage At CinemaCon Has Keanu Reeves Gloriously Whipping Dudes In The Face With Nunchaku

Keanu Reeves in John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum
(Image credit: Lionsgate)

Over the course of three movies, we've seen John Wick use a great number of tools and weapons to kill people get the job done in his missions for revenge. There are standard guns, knives, and swords, but he's also used books, garrote wire, and even got a horse to kick a dude to death once. That in mind, is it really any surprise that the action hero is showing off even more badass skills in the upcoming John Wick: Chapter 4, and will be featured gloriously whipping dudes in the face with nunchaku?

This afternoon, Lionsgate held their presentation at CinemaCon – the last one scheduled as part of this year's convention – and while previewing their slate the studio provided us with our very first look at the next chapter in the beloved John Wick series. The footage was introduced on stage by star Keanu Reeves and director Chad Stahelski, and in no way did it underwhelm in its mission to get us hyped for the titular hero's epic return.

Following up the events from the end of John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum, which saw John clinging to life after being shot and falling off a building, the John Wick: Chapter 4 footage began with the protagonist getting back into fighting form. Strength training, we see him punching a wooden pole that has been wrapped with rope in some kind of underground facility, and we hear the booming voice of The Bowery King (Lawrence Fishburne), who loudly proclaims,

Abandon all hope, you who are about to listen. You are now in the presence of the motherfucking king!

As we see that the rope around the wooden pole has become bloody, The Bowery King appears from behind John Wick, holding up a bespoke black suit, and asks, "Are you ready?" The eponymous star gives a one word response: "Yeah."

From there, the action in the footage moved to Japan, where we get to see Bill Skarsgård and Hiroyuki Sanada's new characters, among others, and voice over from an unknown source announces that a new day is dawning and that there is new management in charge. This doesn't seem to matter at all to John, however, as he confidently proclaims, "I'm going to kill them all," and we hear Ian McShane's Winston lament, "This will not be pleasant."

Montage footage then reveals all kinds of badassness – including John Wick fighting against a pair of men swinging axes, characters riding horses in the desert, archers lining up on an elevated walkway, and a car skidding to a stop and propelling John straight out of the open driver side door. We also see that the hero isn't quite done finding unexpected exits from tall buildings, as at one moment he comes crashing out of what appears to at least be a second story window.

The John Wick: Chapter 4 footage definitely saved the best material for last, however, and it's what I've already teased: Keanu Reeves showing off some nimble hands flipping around nunchaku and then savagely beating a dude in the face with one of the batons. It's remarkable stuff.

For now, it seems that the John Wick: Chapter 4 footage is being maintained as a CinemaCon exclusive, and I make that assumption based on a couple of things. The first is that there was no announcement at the Lionsgate presentation regarding an online launch of the footage, and secondly, the movie is still a little less than a year away from hitting cinemas. 

If you're not already counting down the days to release, however, you should most definitely start now, as it appears that John Wick: Chapter 4 is going to be the most epic installment yet of this ever-expanding franchise (which also has a spinoff in the works in the form of Ballerina, which has Ana de Armas set to star). In the aftermath of the movie being delayed at the end of last year, it will be arriving in theaters everywhere on March 24, 2023.

Stay tuned for more updates about John Wick: Chapter 4, get to know more about the production via our quick things guide for the film, and check out our 2022 Movie Release Calendar to learn about all of the action titles set to come out between now and the end of December that will hopefully satiate your need for ass-kicking while we wait for the upcoming Keanu Reeves feature.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.