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John Wick 4's Best Action Scene Sports Shades Of The Myth Of Sisyphus

Contains spoilers for "John Wick: Chapter 4"

Since the beginning, John Wick has been the stuff of legend. He's the man you send to kill the f***ing boogeyman, as so eloquently revealed by Viggo Tarasov (Michael Nyqvist). Drawn into a war with a lord of an underworld, our hero is forced to head down to that underworld himself — he is even met by Lance Reddick's Charon, named after the boatman of the River Styx, to put things right. Of course, it didn't go right, exactly, and shortly after, the gods (in this case, the High Table) came knocking, demanding John return to action to tackle almost Herculean labors. Pay this debt, kill that person, and sacrifice this appendage to achieve a goal. It's in "John Wick: Chapter 4," though, that one myth in particular is brought to beautiful bone-crunching life.

The sequence in question is John's immense climb up the Montmartre stairs in Paris, consisting of a calf-killing 300 steps. In the film's final act, John fights tooth and nail to reach the top, taking down locals that are out for our hero's blood before reaching the summit. It's probably one of the greatest fight sequences ever to bless the franchise, not simply for the journey but because he gets to the destination and is instantly thrown away from it. 

It's a bittersweet, crowd-pleasing moment that ratchets up the anticipation for an even greater sequence with the added involvement of Donnie Yen's Caine. It's also an eye-watering adaptation of the legendary tale of Sisyphus.

John takes steps to reach mythical levels in Chapter 4

Stop if this sounds familiar: In Greek mythology, Sisyphus was the king of Ephyra, who had a pretty bad run-in with Hades, the king of the underworld. After cheating death twice, Hades set up a task for Sisyphus that would prove a torturous ordeal. The death-dodger was forced to push a large boulder to the top of a hill, clueless to the fact that Hades had the whole thing rigged. Every time the boulder came close to reaching the peak, it would roll back down to the bottom, forcing Sisyphus to repeat the task until eternity.

Now thankfully, John being John, he only gets thrown back to the bottom of the Montmartre stairs once before Caine (who better get that spin-off we've been teased) lends a hand, while the tactful Tracker, Mr. Nobody (Shamier Anderson) covers them both. 

Either way, it's an epic feat for the Baba Yaga to battle and overcome, and certainly strengthens John Wick's reputation as being a modern-day myth. Hopefully, given how things end this time around, it's earned him a spot with the rest of the ancient heroes and maybe even a marble statue or two. He's certainly earned it after all this.