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Is John Wick 4's Trailer Song A Spoiler For The Movie?

Time is running out for John Wick in a new trailer for "John Wick: Chapter 4." Director Chad Stahelski has compared John Wick's journey to that of Odysseus in the ancient classics "The Iliad" and "The Odyessy." Curiously, however, Yahoo! reported that Stahelski correlates this inspiration to the grim — and apparently necessary — end the protagonist must face.

"John may survive all this s***, but at the end of it, there's no happy ending. He's got nowhere to go," the director once said. Odysseus' fate, though violent, is actually quite pleasant. After years away from home, he reunites with his deliberately faithful wife, Penelope, and begins living a literally blessed life. It's clear Stahelski has very different intentions for John Wick.

Per a 2019 article from IndieWire, Stahelski has said that after killing over 300 people, there's no realistic chance that he can just walk away with his own Penelope and "ride off into the f***ing sunset." Interestingly, there's a striking shot in the trailer of men on horseback riding away from the sun. "[John Wick is] f***ed for the rest of his life. It's just a matter of time," the director said. 

Stahelski's vision for the movie, though refreshingly grounded, may be hard to picture just yet — unless you listen closely to the trailer's music.

Friendship, romance, and betrayal

The song playing throughout "Chapter 4's" new trailer is a cinematic remix of Westlife's "Seasons in the Sun" cover. Before the 1990s Irish boy band even touched it, however, the track had seen quite a journey itself. It was originally a 1960s French-language song written by Jacques Brel, before being rewritten in English by another artist and eventually covered by popular Canadian singer Terry Jacks in the 70s.

Jacks told Songfacts of the original composition, "It was about an old man who was dying of a broken heart because his best friend was screwing his wife. He wrote this in a [brothel] in Tangiers, and the words were quite different." Neither of the aforementioned covers convey this overt story of betrayal, though the feeling of painfully leaving behind loved ones is still present -– as it is in the "John Wick" trailer.

The way the lyrics are used throughout the trailer could cast Donnie Yen's Caine as the "friend," John as the dying man, and his deceased wife as the unfaithful lover. Caine is present at the church when John says goodbye to his wife, and it immediately seems as though the two share a tense history. Perhaps it will be revealed that Caine and John's wife were secretly intimate. Gutting John's love for his wife — which started this mad cycle of vengeance in the first place — would not only complicate the narrative in a brutal way but underscore the series' major themes of pointless violence.