John Wick: Chapter 4 director responds to criticism of film’s marathon runtime

The director of John Wick: Chapter 4 has hit back at criticims of the film’s mammoth three-hour runtime.

The film – a third sequel to the hit 2014 action thriller starring Keanu Reeves – is the longest entry in the franchise to date, lasting two hours and 49 minutes in total. In comparison, the original John Wick was a mere 101 minutes.

Critics and fans have questioned the reasoning for such a long sequel, with The Guardian branding the film “overlong and overstuffed” in a two-star review.

However, the film’s director Chad Stahelski has dismissed the impact of these criticisms, telling Digital Spy: “If that’s the critique, we’ll take it.”

He continued: “I don’t think we’ve ever concerned ourselves, we just watch the movie. I think it’s the length that we feel is the best version of the movie. We’ve tried longer, we’ve tried much shorter. That’s what we feel is a good movie.”

This week, John Wick fans were rocked by the news that Lance Reddick, who played Charon in the franchise, had died suddenly at the age of 60.

Reddick was also known for playing Baltimore police lieutenant Cedric Daniels in The Wire.

Reeves was among those to pay tribute to his late co-star, releasing a joint statement with Stahelski.

Keanu Reeves in ‘John Wick: Chapter 4' (Lionsgate)
Keanu Reeves in ‘John Wick: Chapter 4' (Lionsgate)

“We are deeply saddened and heartbroken at the loss of our beloved friend and colleague Lance Reddick. He was the consummate professional and a joy to work with,” they said.

“Our love and prayers are with his wife Stephanie, his children, family and friends. We dedicate the film to his loving memory. We will miss him dearly.”

John Wick: Chapter 4 will be released in cinemas on 24 March.