Movies with Shannon Griffiths


John Wick Chapter 2 4.5 stars

Bursting with insane action, great fight choreography and a terrific lead performance from Keanu Reeves, John Wick: Chapter 2 is the long awaited sequel to the 2014 sleeper hit that took the world by storm.

A shot of adrenaline so good it lives up to the hype and instantaneously proves itself as one of the best sequels ever put to screen, Reeves joins a mix of returning cast members and new additions for a beautifully orchestrated action masterpiece that finds John Wick forced back out of retirement with a bounty on his head.

Visited by a fellow assassin who wants his help in eliminating a target, John has no choice but to re-enter the assassin game after his initial refusal turns things ugly. Having to shoot his way through the streets of New York and the ruins of Rome as a $7 million contract is put on his head and every man and woman imbedded in the assassin world carelessly think they have what it takes to bring down the legend that is he, John must unwillingly face an army of killers as a compulsively entertaining plot fills in the gaps between knuckle-busting fist fights and ferocious gun play.

Retaining all of what was good about the first film’s themes and ideas presented but cranking the dial right up to eleven by delving further into the intricacies of an underground criminal community and the codes of conduct on which it prides itself, new and interesting concepts explore the depths of the global assassin’s guild by world building back-story around those ‘in business’.

The action franchise to end all action franchises, John Wick: Chapter 2 sets the standard very high indeed as everything an action fan could ask for. With violent mayhem, an excellent lead performance and a high body count continuing the fun of why this is already a beloved series at instalment number two; this is a film you definitely need to make time for as soon as possible.

Pirates of the Carribean: Dead Men Tell No Tales 4 stars

The fifth instalment of the popular Pirates’ series based upon the Disneyland ride, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales returns Johnny Depp to his most iconic role of the charismatic Captain Jack Sparrow after a six year gap between films. Co-starring Geoffrey Rush and the return of Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley ten years since the third film, young Queensland star Brenton Thwaites joins Kaya Scodelario as two teens embroiled in a dangerous adventure at sea when Sparrow’s old nemesis Captain Salazar (Javier Bardem) seeks revenge for an incident that happened long before Jack became the legend we know.

Seeking the legendary Trident of Poseidon to free his father William Turner from the curse of the Flying Dutchman, young Henry forms an alliance with an astronomer named Carina, together the only chance Jack Sparrow has at survival as the terrifying Salazar and his army of un-dead sailors hunt him down, hell-bent on killing every pirate at sea after escaping from the Devil’s Triangle, a desolate prison of death Jack is responsible for placing them. Desperate to reverse his recent spate of ill fortune and return to the glory he once knew, Jack and his crew together with new found allies face the most evil of foes.

An Australian production filmed on the Gold Coast throughout the last couple of years, this return to form for a series that had seemingly lost its course with a poorly received fourth instalment rides the high of a gifted cast and well executed plot. An undeniably fun time at the cinema with frequent bursts of hilarity and gorgeous locations, its iconic theme song and cleverly made back-story for the legendary Jack Sparrow adds to the enjoyment of why this is a romping good swashbuckling adventure with characters we are all too familiar.

With another sequel likely as well, it’s a pirate’s life for you.