The official title for John Wick 4 has reportedly been revealed via photos of a crew wrap gift. Principal photography for the Keanu Reeves-led sequel wrapped several weeks ago. This prompted Reeves to hand out personally engraved Rolex Submariner watches to the five members of film’s stunt team, each clocking in at around $10,000 in value. Additionally, in Donnie Yen’s recent goodbye video from the set of John Wick 4, the actor showed off a personalized martial arts fighting stick given to him by Reeves.
Reeves’ critically acclaimed action franchise began with 2014’s John Wick, which is named after the film’s titular character. The next movie in the franchise, which released in 2017, was simply titled John Wick: Chapter 2. Following that format, the title for the next installment still carried the “Chapter” themed titled; however, it was also given an additional subtitle, making the entire title John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum. In interviews around the third film’s release, Reeves explained that “Parabellum” comes from the second half of the Latin phrase, “Si vis pacem, para bellum.” The entire phrase translates to “If you want peace, then prepare for war.” The John Wick film was dubbed this extra subtitle due to the fact that “John Wick’s going to go for war with the entire world,” according to franchise’s director, Chad Stahelski. Now, it seems the fourth installment has also been given a subtitle.
Like “Parabellum” the subtitle “Hagakure” comes from another language. In this case, it comes from an old Japanese text of the same name from the ancient samurai warrior, Yamamoto Tsunetomo, which contained a collection of the warrior’s teachings on the way of the samurai. Hagakure can be either translated to “In the Shadow of Leaves” or “Hidden Leaves.” Following Tsunetomo’s death in 1719, the Hagakure was not widely known about. It wasn’t until the 1930s when his book became the most famous representative of bushido taught in Japan. Bushido is a moral code that pertains to samurai attitudes, behavior, and lifestyle. A manga/comic book version of the book was published in 2011, titled Hagakure: The Manga Edition.
Given the prevalence of martial arts in the upcoming John Wick sequel, the Hagakure subtitle seems to fit well. This is especially true considering Yen’s involvement with the film, who is well-versed in an array of martial arts, including Tai Chi, Karate, Taekwondo, Kickboxing, and Jiu-Jitsu. Fans can look forward to seeing how exactly the subtitle will play into the finished movie when John Wick 4: Hagakure releases on May 27, 2022.