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Monday, November 4, 2019


This film has been reviewed by many so this is not a review. From its opening in Siberia on Lake Baikal we are seeing something never seen on the screen before.
The entire movie shows us the violent will of water in so many manifestations all over the world so please watch the trailer. 

This is Puryear's paper on Schopenhauer's discussion of animal rights. By extension if will can be thwarted, dammed up, stopped then Schopenhauer argues that the animal can be harmed. IF and since the animal can be harmed then the animal has rights. Schopenhauer has inverted the concept of rights in this way. But let me post Puryear's Summary for you:

Schopenhauer on the Rights of Animals

Stephen Puryear 
North Carolina State University


I argue that Schopenhauer’s ascription of (moral) rights to animals flowsnaturally from his distinctive analysis of the concept of a right. In contrastto those who regard rights as fundamental and then cast wrongdoing as amatter of violating rights, he takes wrong (Unrecht) to be the morefundamental notion and defines the concept of a right (Recht) in its terms.He then offers an account of wrongdoing which makes it plausible tosuppose that at least many animals can be wronged and thus, byextension, have rights. The result, I argue, is a perspective on the natureof moral rights in general, and the idea of animal rights in particular, thatconstitutes an important and plausible alternative to the more familiarviews advanced by philosophers in recent decades. 

MORE that are beautiful and violent

And after seeing Aquarela I am extending it to WATER. In this film the WILL of water in all its violence is a visual experience of the violence of the will of water. Greek mythology worshiped Poseidon, the God of the oceans and seas and all waters and dominion of all sea animals: dolphins, whales, seals, fishes, ALL of them were HIS. For any sea journey Poseidon had to be ritualistically worshiped, honored with gifts, sacrifices, poems and words to ensure a safe journey. None of his sea animals could be killed unless Poseidon gave his blessing. He was a great and powerful God whose orders had to be obeyed. Once in the Odyssey Odysseus's sailors did not honor him and he raged with a storm that destroyed their ships and sent them to a watery grave. His terrible rage was feared and all tried to appease him. It was DEATH to go against him or to forget to honor him.

Were pagans with multiple gods less advanced than our fake Christian values today?

City dump polluted stream Dubuque IOWA
The Will of Water has been attenuated by humans. If the will has been thwarted, stopped, from flowing, then the river has been harmed!  Therefore the river has RIGHTS! 

There is no ancient Greek who could have done this as his terror of Poseidon would have forbid it. Is modern man more civilized because he has superior technology? If values are not transferred along with technology then human regression occurs and unfolds.
Colorado River Flowing, Stopping
If the flow of water is being stopped, the will of the water is being stopped and any stopping of the will in a specie or entity is 

If it can be harmed then by extension that entity has 

And we must enter the Courts of Law to plead the case of 
The Colorado River. 
Not on the basis of its being a person as a corporation, but as an entity 
that cannot be infringed.
Because it can be harmed.

A sea once so huge all of Ireland could have fit into it.
A Sea of 1000 islands.
Beautiful, rich with fish and sea animals
Ruined by USSR dams blocking the water for industrial use.

The ARAL Sea
In 44 years less than 10% is left.It is saline.All life is gone or dying


Thursday, August 22, 2019

NOT a Review:Once Upon a time....In Hollywood

10050 Cielo Drive - Manson Murders

Just go see it. Anything by Tarantino is worth more than you can imagine.

This film by the great MASTER is not great for what it says BUT FOR WHAT IT DOESN'T SAY. Tarantino has given us the INVISIBLE in this film.

So why do I say that? Let's take the ending first. Since this is not a review do I need to remind you of spoilers. I hope not. 

The Manson Murders are not in it. The murders are in the house next door as the murderers are so hyped up on WEED they dont even know which house is the one Manson wanted.

BUT. IF the murders had not been committed against the BRAND names of Hollywood and their BRAND name friends, would Manson have ever been implicated in his cult? It would have been just a two bit cowboy star on his way down down down and his stunt double. Not a big deal. Or someone just like him next door?

But the MANSON MURDERS performed by CULT members was fleshed out by the media, Polanski, his pregnant wife the beautiful new starlet Sharon Tate, and the Folger coffee heiress certainly got their attention. So Tarantino has given us a murder attempt that failed, but did not really fail as the murderers were brutally murdered. AND I MEAN BRUTALLY. 

I read this as an escalation fantasy. IF the Manson Murders were committed today, the horror would be far greater in brutality and visual imagery than the original I am thinking. Our idea of horror has escalated, so Hollywood has ordained, and we have obediently identified with the new. 

The Manson Murders were a Debordian SPECTACLE concealing the REAL. That it is not the murders the STATE is concerned with, BUT WHO IS MURDERED!  This is what Tarantino is telling you INVISIBLY.

Tarantino is also telling you that the ante on HOW a murder may be staged has been upped. We see a performance by Brad Pitt of great violence. He will be criticized by every PC Feminist in the country and the world. In personal life he has had a reputation of well...... not being quite non-violent. As we have learned in reading murder mysteries, murders are often PERFORMED to deliver a MESSAGE as well as delivering the CONTENT, which is the murder itself. But it is the MESSAGE that is the most relevant, not the murder. The HOW. NOT THE WHY.

There are so many very observant and subtle images of telling that can be easily overlooked.

How about the beautiful boy at the Spahn Ranch who rides the horse so perfectly. A cowboy within the Hollywood Cowboy genre at the Spahn Ranch, a set for early cowboy movies. He is lovely to look at. Take him off the horse, put him behind the wheel of a car and his aggressiveness to the women partners in crime announces his insecurity. As soon as he is walking on Ceilo Drive he is so insecure we would not notice him much, the way we did the beautiful boy with the beautiful body riding the horse. What is invisible is the real cowboy, who is being portrayed in the movies, and what life he is living. It will be Cormac McCarthy who will give us that story in his Border Trilogy. Three book that are McCarthy's way of giving us the history of the southwest from the 1930's to the present. And it is a loss we can never recover from. A history not in our school history books.

Tarantino layers and unlayers Hollywood for us. We have his dead eye on Beefcake with Brad Pitt, so often filmed that way in his earlier movies after Thelma and Louis with his shattering James Dean spectacle of a performance. Pitt is on the roof doing repairs and takes off his shirt as it is hot. We see this older Brad Pitt with a different body build from Achilles in Troy, a more adolescent slim sinewy look to him rather than middle aged beefy. And Pitt's performance is incredibly nuanced. Sometimes glimmers of the young Brad emerge and still the older man is there with this truly great performance of his age. He is one of the finest actors of his generation. DiCaprio is stunning in his insecurity. And the two play off each other in a way not seen so often. Especially in Hollywood. Tarantino's film is also a becoming extinct kind of movie in tinsel town. One without CGI, a throwback to what we loved in movies. The past is a memorial in this movie. Something unlikely to be seen much again. Hollywood has departed from this kind of quality.

There is not even a mediocre performance anywhere in this fine film. All are trustingly directed by Tarantino. 

Brad Pitt's Beefcake is filmed with such irony of the cliched way Hollywood does Beefcake. Tarantino includes it and makes fun of it simultaneously. That is what a great filmmaker doess.

Skipping ahead to the young women at the Spahn Ranch under the influence of Manson and their WEED addiction the car ride to the murder is punctuated by a typical high conversation by young women with meaningless words in their heads. Fast forward to our recent de-criminalizing of this substance will mean you will hear much more of this kind of stupid talk from stupid people. It merges into the word salad of the insane. Get ready for it.

What is still invisible is that these young women under Manson's influence, are going to grow up, get older, and BREED. Tarantino places the pre-feminist in front of our eyes and ears and if you are perceiving them from the future they will be in you will shudder because you know them now in their old age. It is not pretty.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Once Upon A Time In.... Hollywood - Esquire Interview with Tarantino,DiCaprio, Pitt By Michael Hainey

What An Interview!
Reading this interview with The Three through Leslie Fiedler's critical essays, Le Carre's character Leiser in Looking Glass War, Roberto Bolano's 2666 and of course Luce Irigaray's SPECULUM of the Other Woman. 

Leiser smiled. It was the best ever, that week, John. It's funny, isn't it: we spend all our time chasing girls, and it's the men that matter; just the men. From 


The beginning of the interview

Pitt settles in, looks into a small...rise. He looks up and says, "There's nothing I can do about boner pants, is there?" 

Tarantino looks at him confused.

"Remember that Curb Your Enthusiasm episode?" Pitt says. "Where the woman thinks he popped one in the movie theater?" Tarantino laughs.

I offer Pitt a pillow. For his lap. He tries it for a minute and then flips it to the side.

Brad Pitt refers to his unintentional erection attributing it to his pants? Too tight? Hainey refers to women as CHICKS and that completes this good ol boy group sealing him the writer into its seams. 

Any woman is aware that in these days, if she were present, they would not be speaking this way. It would not be a Male Discourse only which is what we are reading.

This is the way men speak when women are not present.

In Bolano's 2666 it will be constantly  brought to your attention, especially during The Part About the Crimes - 300 plus pages of autopsies -  as the officers discuss the bodies, the crime scene, of the murdered women or their dumping as road kill in the desert,  as if they are commodities rather than victims of men. The only exception is the murdered bodies of the two kidnapped girls ages 14 and 9 is it? One of them weeps.

This is the way they talk about us when we are not present. Margot Robbie is in this film but she is not present at this Esquire Interview. 

Bolano will tell us that in these crimes in St. Teresa - exact copy of the real ones in Cuidad Juarez  - conceals

The Secret of the World.

Luce Irigaray will be more direct:

The world is ruled by male homosexual, homoerotic collusion that they know but do not know they know. Heterosexuality is the MASK that conceals this. 
Men hate openly gay men because then they have made themselves into commodities just like women. 
To be accumulated and exchanged.

And anyone familiar with the reviews, essays and writings of Leslie Fiedler will already know that ALL his work was directed at this undetected homoerotic homosexuality permeating all group activities where men gather together. He hones in on the great American novels: Moby Dick; Huckleberry Finn; and those of James Fenimore Cooper. Nor does Hemingway escape. He takes on football and the men who arbitrated the Treaty of Versailles to end up giving us Hitler and World war II. My rude awakening when I read Come Back To The Raft Ag'in, Huck Honey! (LINK is pdf for you) led to associations of my own that I had felt, but never uttered and hardly even dared to think I might have intuitively grasped something universal in the world until I was validated. Now of course I see it everywhere so here is a recent recognition in this Esquire interview which I am sharing here. 

As things are changing in Hollywood in 1969 Michael Hainey summarizes: 

MH: What's fascinating __ there is the rise of the pretty leading man, but there is also the rise of the anti-leading man. Again, look at 1969. Dustin Hoffman plays Ratso Rizzo in a corrupted western, Midnight Cowboy. And then, who is the complete embodiment of the new anti-leading man? Charles Manson! He's hairy and charismatic and young. Plus, he gets the chicks. And he literally steals the old dream factories from these guys; he's living on an old movie set. Manson usurps it all! Even the headlines. He becomes more famous than all of them.

BP : Right! Well put, well put.

Here Pitt comments on what Hainey has said. He does not say Wow! Nor does he just nod his head in agreement or say yes. The subtext I am reading here is the misogynist male automatic comment of placing a judgement on what Hainey has said. Right! Well put. well put. Pitt has assumed dominance here in the masculine DISCOURSE of this  conversation where Hainey is not asking questions but commenting on what the Three are saying, often to each other. Sort of like women tend to do in this situation.

Or is Pitt assuming the femme position of agreeing and praising? Is this becoming trans now?

But above Hainey has done the same thing:

QT: But the thing is, Rick was sold a bill of goods everyone else was sold. To be a young leading man is to be macho and masculine and sexy and handsome and chiseled.

MH: Well, for his generation, that's the epitome of manhood, of male identity. And here Hainey is agreeing and rephrasing Tarantino. He is not the journalist asking questions that can be labeled "interrogative" forcing their replies into the Binary Discourse. This interview is free association. That makes it different.


LD: As I'm thinking about it, I've had these relationships in the industry too. You need your support system. You need that guy you can sit there and watch TV with and not say a fucking word with for five hours. You need to know somebody is "there." When we were doing the movie, my relationship with Brad clicked. It was very early on where he improvised a line and it changed everything. In the scene, as it was written, I'm coming to set hungover and I am basically getting my fate handed to me, discovering what my future is going to be in this industry. And I'm really down. And in the scene, Brad ad-libs. He just comes out with this line: He looks at me and says, "Hey you're Rick fucking Dalton. Don't you forget that."

I find this use of another guy to just be there very like the guy who wants the woman - eye candy type? - to just be there, chilling. This is exactly a description of rapprochement from psychoanalysis telling about that early pre specking stage of development when the young child plays in the room where the mother is. Mother does not have to be interacting with her child, she just has to be there. If she gets up and goes to check the oven the spell is broken and the child follows her rather than continue playing. Mother's presence is a necessary part of this tiny world the child requires to play creatively. Mahler's work on Separation and Individuation. clearly Leo has not completed this stage and the fact that he talks about it means that he wants to understand it.


They are talking together about how the movie industry is changing now. That we are in a moment in time where it is shifting just as it did in 1969. And yes it is. I have felt it for a long time.

BP What I always loved about going to a cinema was letting something slowly unfold, and to luxuriate in that story and watch and see where it goes. I'm curious to see if that whole form of movie watching is just out the window with the younger generations. I don't think so completely. 

Walter Benjamin has written beautifully on this understanding. Time is slower. There is time for contemplation, for memory. Today's young people are mostly ADD - medicated or not - and they want FAST. They want to be entertained, amused. They are not looking for contemplation, associations with their memories or connecting dots with other films. 

The classic BP must read

QT: It requires the right kind of movie - one that hits the right kind of nerve where it becomes a conversation.  "Get Out" achieved that. Everyone was talking about it, and the whole metaphor of the Sunken Place was something everyone started to use. It sparked genuine conversation. It used to be movies were the pop-culture conversation and it was much rarer for a TV show to break into that place. But now that's where it is.

For me in the early 1960's while teaching in an elementary school the topic in the teachers's room was always TV and rarely movies. I dont think these three know that.

Leo goes on to say that there is always that chance to do something really fine with your part. Yes there are those wonderful moments when a mediocre film comes alive when that great moment comes. Who can ever forget James Dean in Giant when his oil well hits and he is telling the group all covered in oil and happiness. It was a rare moment then in those times and we all felt it. The same is true in that moment in Thelma and Louise when Brad is caught and being dragged away and shouting to Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon. It was a WOW moment and I just knew, sitting in Singapore watching it, that Brad was going to be the new big star. It was his time to take a small part and make it great.



MH: One of the crazy facts about Manson:He was not an outsider in Hollywood. He crosseed paths with many famous people in town. Like Brian Wilson. Or like doris Day's son, Terry Melcher, the record producer. you guys have lived in this town a long time.what six degrees of weirdness do you have?

BP: I remember back in the early days I hung out with Brandon Lee.....We went out one night and everyone else had peeled off, and we ended up back at his place and it was like six in the morning. A real, you know, drunk and stony night, and he proceeded that night to tell me how he thought he was going to die young like his dad. And I just chalked it up to, you know, stony 6:00 A.M. talk. Then he got The Crow next year.

LD: I have one. One of the most ominous and sad ones. I grew up revering River Phoenix as the great actor of my generation, and all I ever wanted was to have just an opportunity to shake his hand. And one night, at a party in Silver Lake, I saw him walk up a flight of stairs. It was almost like something you would see in Vertigo, because I saw there was something in his face, and I'd never met him - always wanted to meet him, always wanted to just have an encounter with him  - and he was walking toward me and I kind of froze. And then the crowd got in my way, and I looked back and he was gone.  I walked back up the stairs and back down, and I was like, "Where did he go?" And he was ...on his way to the Viper Room.  It was almost as if - I don't know how to describe it, but it's this existential thing where I felt like ...he disappeared in front of my very eyes, and the tragedy that I felt afterward of having lost this great influence for me and all of my friends. The actor we all talked about. Just to be able to have that, always wanting to just - and I remember extending my hand out, and then ...Two people came in front and then I looked back, and then he wasn't there.

BP: I'll tell you one of the greatest moments  I've had in this town: getting to spend two days with Burt Reynolds on this film. 

QT: Yeah.

LD: Yeah.

MH: He was originally cast to play George Spahn, correct?

QT Yeah. The last performance Burt Reynolds gave was when he came down and did a rehearsal day for that sequence, and then the script reading. And that was really amazing.

BP: It was a fucking pleasure.

QT: I found out from three different people that the last thing he did just before he died was run lines with his assistant. Then he went to the bathroom, and that's when he had his heart attack.


Did anyone notice that all these "moments" were about other men? 

Tarantino is an original and accomplished writer and director of unique films. Leo and Brad have been the objects of desire for many women. Yet none of these three have ever been able to sustain a mature emotional relationship with a mature emotional woman, have they. Brad comes close with Joli but they have a public breakdown on an airplane! Over the eldest son's public argument with his adopted father. so Maddox and Brad go at it and it seems Brad is abusive. This is a very normal occurrence between teen sons and fathers. The old Oedipal who owns the mother, the son or the father? Evidently that was never addressed in the family dynamics. Why? IDK. 

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Reading Blade Runner 2049 with Unemployed Negativity

For a deep dark reading of Blade Runner 2049 by one of the finest minds in philosophy still in academia. If you can get to the University of Southern Maine to study with him  then kill if you have to to get there. Or ask him if you can just audit if you  are not after credits.

Reading Wind River from TheM0vieBlog Or Why Try to Argue With Perfection

Please just go to Darren Mooney at  themovieblog for a superlative review of  

Tuesday, May 9, 2017


Official Trailer

The review at Rogerebert is exceptionally good so below is the link.

"It’s a mystery to me why he trusts me, because I don’t think he likes me." Laura Poitras

Assange has already told her about his feelings when she films him with Lady Gaga's interview with him. Gaga's first question is "How do you feel?"

Assange tells her, Why do you ask how I feel? How I feel doesn't matter."

So whether he likes Poitras or not has nothing to do with why he gives her unprecedented access. He trusts her.

Why he doesn't like the film is why he doesn't like seeing himself in this film. His vulnerability is palpable. I would not like to see myself on film like that either. I would hate it, feel shamed. And yet it has made me love and admire him even more.

So much criticism of Assange himself and interpretations of his presence and performative mode for the camera. When will critics heed Baudrillard and understand that WHENEVER the camera is filming, those being filmed are performing. The subject and the object cannot be divorced, separated, perceived separately. Forget it. This is true of the animal abuses on youtube DONE FOR THE CAMERA to torture the viewers, to force them to click and accuse them and try to ban them, apprehend them, stop them, shame them and all that happens is that the notoriety they desire has been bestowed on them.

Assange is absolutely aware of the camera. It has been noted that he and his associates hate this film. Well if I were Assange I would hate it after watching myself in it. Poitras has captured Assange in so many big screen close ups that he is revealed. But only if you yourself can read him.The critics have distanced themselves from him to critique him, then accused him of egotism, manipulation, etc. Denounced him for his outburst at PC Feminists for the accusations of rape in Sweden at him. It has since been leaked that these women were pretty much forced to bear witness against him. One can imagine the consequences if they refused. So they caved.When the US government couldn't get anything serious on a member of the Mafia they always resorted to Income Tax Evasion to put them behind bars. Nowadays the go to crime is raping a woman, sexual misconduct, and or pedophile activities somewhere in the present or past. I imagine sometimes it is true, but WHEN YOU CRY WOLF you wear out your accusations.

As Poitras focuses her camera on Assange blown up to full screen, all I can see is his tender mouth. It has a slight tremor to it, like a child holding back tears displays. When questioned he answers as he thinks out the reply he wishes to make considering the camera will record it forever. He does not use cliches, sound bites, rhetoric, but tries to be clear, unemotional while feeling very emotional,and yes, this is a performance. But how could it be otherwise?

And as the time sequence follows from 2010 to the 2016 election, sometimes out of joint to me, we see the early Assange in a lovely home in the UK answering a question by using the metaphor of a personal garden. Has he read Kosinski's Being There with Chauncey Gardiner's aphoristic garden replies?

You have a garden and when there are weeds you want to get rid of them so your garden can be healthy and grow. That is your perception of your garden. My perception is the world. 

And that is his tragedy and any of us who feel the same about our world, our planet. The refugees, starving children, the sickening fate of animals being tortured, brutally slaughtered willfully or for food as it really doesn't matter what reason they are made to suffer so by the brutality of humans who have been so brutalized themselves they know not what they do. All this is inscribed on the face of Julian Assange. And this is my reading of Poitras's film. 

There is a major difference between Assange and Snowden and Chelsea Manning in how their revelations were meant to be revealed. Manning just sent them to wikileaks.Snowden wanted Greenwald to handle their "careful" dissemination. To protect us? In other words Snowden wished some sort of control on how they would surface, be read, be understood. Greenwald has controlled the careful and rather slow publishing of them. Still there is a treasure trove we have not seen and at this point in time does anyone really care? 

Assange trusts the public. He DUMPS them in a heap on us. We read them out of sequence, each one as an EVENT, the way the world is accoring to Foucault and the Continental Philosophers. The impact of the Podesta, Hillary, Campaign manager leaks were far more violent on us than Snowden's. We knew we were being under surveillance, we just got the proof. But those emails were so violent, so unbelievable that political leaders of the US could stoop to such sickening high school pernicious, destructive antics that they never seemed real to me. And yet I did not doubt them for a minute. How is it possible that adults are so unconsciously corrupt they can play at this in a real game for control of the world.  And how is it possible so many can deny their validity and blame Russia for interfering in our election when we have interfered in elections for decades and decades? 

This cannot be fixed.  Sadly so many critics wish to focus on the psychological personality of Assange. Why don't they know that interpretation is over, dead, finished along with the Dominating Discourse of the Dialectic of Thesis and Antithesis..

Friday, February 24, 2017

JOHN WICK 2 - Not a Dick - reading through JARMUSCH'S GHOST DOG

To deconstruct John Wick 2 requires a number of screenings. The action is so fast, the scenes fly by, that you cannot contemplate any of it until it is over, so see it again is all you can do if you want to say anything intelligent about it. I am up to 6 times and I am still seeing something new each time that I missed.

For a detailed reading review of this film at RogerEbert : Angelica Jade Bastien 
Another beautiful reading of John Wick 2 by John Bloner echoes Jarmusch's Ghost Dog. I am indebted to him for nudging my memory on Jarmusch.

First they killed his dog,then stole his Mustang, then they bombed his house He's Back!
But not as a contract killer. John Wick is back in the  Symbolic Order of VENGEANCE.

1. The screenplay is brilliant.I believe it to be intuitive rather than consciously intentional. It is CAMP. It is more CAMP than CAMP, "WORSE" than CAMP as Nietzsche would say. HYPER-CAMP as Baudrillard might. The images also are SUPER-CAMP. More REAL than REAL as Deleuze suggests as our way out.The NOIR influences are deep and the slivery footnotes are perfect.

John Wick: "I'm not that guy anymore.
Santino:"You're always that guy, John"

Winston:There are only 2 rules:
Winston:All markers must be honored.
Winston:No business on Continental grounds.

And it is right here that we see the gold coins again. The first time is in Tarasov's garage in the boxes - they are closed though and we can't see except by thinking backwards - and beside stacks of paper money a dolly is pulling,then being loaded into the trunk of a vehicle.  Winston  is supervising their perfectly designed and executed imprint.
Paper money is used to buy gold bullion;gold bullion is stamped into gold coins of value.
We will see John Wick, Cassian pay SPECIAL OTHERS with these gold coins, a wave to Ayn Rand's John Galt whose followers pay with gold coins whenever they observe excellence in the decaying world.
In John Wick it has more sinister implications as Winston says, "Put them into circulation."

Gresham's Law: Bad money drives good money into hoarding.
People spend bad money and save - hide - good money.
A way to destroy the paper currency of a State making it worthless.
A way to take over the financial machine of the State.

Fishburne:Will someone please get this man a gun!
"Give this man a gun!  Dalton Trumbo’s Johnny Got His Gun
Or the recent Jane Got a Gun

Fishburne:Don't forget you owe me.
John Wick:You don't want me owing you.

I am especially fond of the use of the word ENJOY !
It's use in this film is PURE ZIZEKIAN
The SUPER-EGO command that you ENJOY!
Tarasov:ENJOY your retirement Mr. Wick.
Julius:ENJOY your stay here.
Julius:ENJOY yourself.
Tailor:Mr. Wick, Do ENJOY your party. 
Gianna:Are you ENJOYING the party Mr. Akoni
Gianna: GO. ENJOY  the festivities Mr. Akoni

Cassian:Are you working tonight? 
John Wick:Nods.
Cassian:Are you having a good night?
John Wick:Fraid so.
Shoot out begins.

Cassian:You killed my ward.Someone I was close to.
Cassian:An eye for an eye John. You know that.
 This is Sharia Law in the Symbolic Order of the Sacred

SHARIA LAW is popularly understood as adulterous women getting stoned to death. Sharia Law is Old Testament Law: An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.

The opening sequence with Buster Keaton projected on the building wall was stolen by the director from student work at NYU by his own admission. He makes no mention of Orson Welles when discussing the mirror scenes. Maybe they have just become naturalized, institutionalized into hyper mirror shoot out scenes. 
This one is gorgeous.

2. The PLOT follows Jim Jarmusch's GHOST DOG.The SAMURAI warrior of mastery and integrity.

It is what I call a Love Letter to Jim Jarmusch's wondrous film with Forrest Whittaker. Included are a dog and pigeons on the roof and a lonely character. You can rent it for 2.99 on youtube so now would be an excellent time to see it.

Charon welcomes guests into the Continental and he arrives at Wick's burned property at the end to escort him back to Winston who meets him in the park.Charon is the dog who waits by the River Styx at the Gates of Hades. Cassian/Cassius is an enemy of Caesar. Julius is the Rome manager of the Continental where Winston rules. Winston is the main character of 1984. Ares is the God of War. John Wick's wife is Helen whose beauty and treachery began the Trojan War.It is possible to go on with this.
The tattoo on John Wick's back

fortis Fortuna adiuvat Fortune Favors the Brave - Pliny, Cicero.

And lest we forget The Boogeyman
Boogeyman is a 2005 New Zealand-American supernatural horror filmdirected by Stephen T. Kay
In the 1940's we children were scared by our mothers about the Boogeyman. We feared he was under our beds at night or in the closet so we wanted the door shut.Strange it should resurface in recent times.

This film nods to mythology,film, art, The Vatican with its fabulous art collection in the scenes displaying the culture these assassins, thugs, high table gangsters display.

John Wick, the man, the myth, the legend

The Samurai with his Master, his rules, values, discipline, art, style and disciplined skill.The lonely life of the assassin who is to become the prey and hunted.
The scene with Lawrence on the roof with his pigeons a great salute to Jim Jarmusch, his independent probably lonely fight to make his own films in his own way to limited release.
The White Dove thrown to the sky and followed by the other multi colored pigeons, a visual metaphor of the white man as substitute target for the man of color.
Nice reversal.
Fishburne's last scene a mirror of Ghost Dog

Now the assassin is to be assassinated.

This is the MANUFACTURE of the FATWA !.  Khomeini in issuing the FATWA on Salmon Rushdie put the entire western civilized machine into scarlet alert with no way to defend against it, only to hide Rushdie in safe house after safe house for a few years, destroying his life. We saw a Foucauldian CUT in this ultimate surveillance and capture by the US STATE with SNOWDEN under The Obama. When the personal presidential plane of Evo Morales,the President of Bolivia, is forced down in Portugal because "it is reported" that Snowden is aboard and escaping - and no allies will permit it to land on their soil. We see international SHARIA LAW morphing into the ORDER OF PRODUCTION having left the SYMBOLIC ORDER OF THE FATWA. And this occurs at the end of John Wick 2 as in his hour of grace running to get away, he sees every eye turned toward him as a potential assassin against him. They are too numerous to count and all will want to kill him.

Enter Bob Fagles' modern classic translation of Homer's Odyssey. Odysseus has come home in disguise. Only his old dog Argus recognizes him and instantly dies, having waited 20 years for him - just living to see his Master again - another Ghost Dog. Odysseus faces the same impossible dilemma as John Wick at the end. He must kill all the suitors as Athena tells him to do, with her help. But his reply to her is in his words,

We had the same English teacher

"There's another worry," he tells her
"that haunts me even more,
What if I kill them -thanks to you and Zeus -
how do I run from their avengers?
Show me the way I ask you." - 20.43-45 - Fagles translation

This is what Sharia Law means. All your family and progeny will be annihilated. As justice is in the Order of Production, Sharia Law is in the Symbolic Order of the Sacred.

 Khomeini issued a FATWA on Salmon Rushdie for his portrayal of the Prophet Muhammad in his Satanic Verses.As Baudrillard said, "... there he sat in his small house, sitting on a blanket and paralyzed the entire western world into a state of fear. The West had no way to respond to this kind of power."

This is the power of the Symbolic Order.
As Baudrillard tells us: in referring to 9-11 as a GIFT in which the US has not been able to return the COUNTER-GIFT. So the US must suicide if it cannot. Seems like it is right now huh.

$1.98 for used one at Amazon as I write this.
Baudrillard sees the power of the terrorists as lying in the symbolism of slaughter – not merely the reality of death, but in a sacrifice that challenges the whole system. Where previously the old revolutionary sought to conduct a struggle between real forces in the context of ideology and politics, the new terrorist mounts a powerful symbolic challenge which, when combined with high-tech resources, constitutes an unprecedented assault on an over-sophisticated and vulnerable West. This new edition is up-dated with the essays ‘Hypotheses on Terrorism’ and ‘Violence of the Global’.

3. The reflecting mirror shoot out is an enhanced CGI from Orson Welles Lady From Shanghai. The superbly generous Orson would have been thrilled to see his very first experimental mirror shoot out taken to these extremes.

The last shoot out scene takes place in rooms that are composed of an infinity of reflecting mirrors all colored by lights: blues, reds, golds just incredible CGI. But this almost final scene and the last big shoot out is a marvelous tribute to the great Orson Welles who first did reflecting mirrors in Citizen Kane and then a shoot out in Lady From Shanghai where Rita Hayworth gets shot dead and Orson's character leaves her to die for all her betrayals. It is magnificent.

At the end John Wick 2 is waving hello to Mel Gibson's Mad Max. A dead wife and a dog traveling with him into dystopia, 21st Century style.  Wick is in the "dystopia" of the Deterritorialized Corporate Global World of International Thuggery of the present

Keanu Reeves is once again the FLAT character.
And in John Wick 2 Reeves is the FLAT character who is the main character.
Keanu Reeves has been criticized for his acting talent NOT. Reeves always has his own persona in every part. Humphrey Bogart was/did the same. He is what E.M.Forster has called a FLAT CHARACTER. The ones around him change but he does not.
But actually John Wick 2 is not a character driven movie. None of them change. All are FLAT in Forster's description, but are drawn excessively. We see why Gianna's father chose her to sit at the High Table instead of her brother. We see why her brother was not chosen to inherit that place of authority.

A "flat" character does not mean a "boring" character. It's a technical term in literary theory popularized by the novelist E. M. Forster in his monograph on writing titled "Aspects of the Novel." According to Forster, a "flat" character is a kind of token: his or her psychology and values do not grow, change, evolve, or come to any kind of crisis during the course of the narrative because characters — like plot points — have functions within the story; it is simply not the function of a flat character to steal attention away from the main character(s) — the protagonist(s) and the antagonist(s) — by growing, changing, evolving, or reaching any sort of "crisis" within the story in which they must exercise his or her will, and come to a decision — or initiate an action — that would be surprising, i.e., a new pattern of behavior inconsistent with their previous pattern. "Flat" characters remain who they were throughout the entire course of the story, because they are there simply to provide a particular kind of obstacle (or point of affinity) for the main characters. They are part of the stock-in-trade of every playwright, screenwriter, short-story writer, and novelist. They are a particular kind of narrative tool

So Reeves as the FLAT character is among a stellar collection of FLAT characters who are not changing psychologically. Their character's change would have little to do with the plot- hence the end of interpretation The dead dog is a Ghost Dog and the one he has now has no name. He is a Ghost Dog also just following Wick like a shadow. 

He is always the Keanu we love to watch. He never changes. His vulnerability, presence, integrity and values are always there in the Inscription of His Body/Face and in the parts he plays. Reeves embraces the feminine in his maleness which is physically awesome without posing as macho. This is his undeniable erotic charisma and at 52 in John Wick 2, Reeves, an assassin, is a Samurai with a plot turn mapped over Ghost Dog updated to THE DETERRITORIALIZED CORPORATE CAPITALIST MACHINE  which far surpasses Coppola's GODFATHER series in its world scope.

4. This movie moves in and out of the Symbolic Order and the Order of Production. As a contract assassin John Wick is a professional killer. He is paid for this. The opening scene obliterates  that as he enters the Symbolic Order of the Sacred.

Tarasov:It is not just a car.
It is John Wick's car.
Assistant:Why not just give it back?
Tarasov:He killed my nephew and my brother!
(And he knows John Wick is not yet finished with returning the COUNTER-GIFT.)
Tarasov:And over a car and a puppy!
Wick has received the GIFT of DEATH
And the COUNTER-GIFT must be returned.
It must be greater than the GIFT in the SYMBOLIC ORDER.

John Wick is not a Dick. Wick is not wicked. 
Lacanian word play in action!

As Cassian says to John Wick in the Continental Bar after hearing about the Marker as the reason he kills Gianna
In response to Wick's explanation for his freedom,
John Wick:Am I?
Cassian: not at all
You killed my ward. Someone I was close to.
An eye for an eye John. You know that. 

Now the assassin is to be assassinated as in Ghost Dog

We see the MANUFACTURE of the FATWA !.  Khomeini in issuing the FATWA on Salmon Rushdie put the entire western civilized machine into scarlet alert with no way to defend against it, only to hide Rushdie in safe house after safe house for a few years, destroying his life. We saw a Foucauldian CUT in this ultimate surveillance and capture by the US STATE with SNOWDEN under The Obama. The personal presidential plane of Evo Morales,the President of Bolivia, is forced down in Portugal because "it is reported" that Snowden is aboard and escaping - and no allies will permit it to land on their soil. We see international SHARIA LAW moving into the ORDER OF PRODUCTION having left the SYMBOLIC ORDER OF THE FATWA. And this occurs at the end of John Wick 2 as in his hour of grace to get away, he sees every eye turned toward him as a potential assassin against him. They are too numerous to count and all will want to kill him. His bounty is up to 14 million.

Lawrence Fishburne's final scene is holding the white dove on the rooftop and uplifting it to fly. Then all the varied colored ones fly up after her. It is quite beautiful and a metaphor for John Wick running away at the end to escape the International Assassins League coming after him at the end of the hour, He is the scapegoat to be annihilated after the 60 minutes period of grace given to him. The white man fleeing from the multi colored peoples of the world, saving the homeless and the darker skinned people in the subway tunnels.

This is the MANUFACTURED PRODUCTION OF THE FATWA. The computerized text message and the code of 11 -11-1 goes out and we see the code replicating down the SCREEN as all members are put on alert. No place in the world will be safe for him. Everyone will be after him and he can only know by his feeling, by a sixth sense of awareness, who is an assassin. It sets up the 3rd chapter of John Wick 3.

John Wick is not a Dick
I have only to mention TIME to begin another reading of this film. The women "secretaries" setting up "FATWAS", EXCOMMUNICATING members after Winston has pronounced EXCOMMUNICADO on John Wick taking  from him the protection and privileges of The CONTINENTAL. The dial telephones used for this. So they can't be recorded and archived like digital ones? The technological savvy in use, the emphasis on old ancient traditions of the church and its blessing of new high table coronations. I began to get unglued as to what century I was in, so beautifully integrated the ancient was with the incredible sophistication of weapons, weapon purchases, clothes, sculpture and paintings of exquisite curation. Gianna's Roman bath, her Roman preferred method of suicide. This is a complex movie and one that foreshadows an imminent future that perhaps is already here.