John Wick star Keanu Reeves explains Parabellum meaning

Action sequel John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (out Friday) is not a confusing film. Long (bloody) story short, Keanu Reeves‘ titular hitman kills many many people in an attempt to survive the $14 million bounty which has been placed on his hirsute head. Indeed, the part of John Wick: Chapter – Parabellum which is toughest to understand is the movie’s title.

So, what exactly does “Parabellum” mean?

“‘Parabellum’ is Latin,” says Reeves. “It’s the second half of a Latin phrase. ‘Si vis pacem, para bellum.’ It’s basically, If you want peace, then [prepare for] war. So, parabellum is prepare for war.”

How did John Wick franchise director Chad Stahelski come to gift his movie that name?

“We like to edumacate our audience,” says the filmmaker, with a laugh. “John Wick uses a lot of languages and I’m a big fan of Latin. It’s just a language fetish of mine. You know, John Wick’s going to go for war with the entire world. So, if you want peace, prepare for war. That’s like a catchphrase in the movie. Parabellum is also what some military and ballistic guys use to describe a nine millimeter — parabellum. It’s a gun term.”

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum costars Halle Berry, Ian McShane, Anjelica Huston, Lance Reddick, Asia Kate Dillon, and Mark Dacascos, among others.

Watch the trailer for the film, above.

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