Rina Sawayama Slaughters Everybody in ‘John Wick 4’ (And Seems Wonderful Doing It)

John Wick could have simply discovered a killer new character to take over your entire franchise. Her identify? Akira, performed by pop songstress Rina Sawayama.

(Spoilers forward for John Wick: Chapter 4.)

Akira serves because the concierge on the Osaka Continental, the Japanese model of the New York lodge for assassins run by Shimazu Koji (Hiroyuki Sanada). Shimazu, who’s Akira’s father, is a detailed ally of John Wick (Keanu Reeves); he agrees to absorb the hitman even after he’s deemed “excommunicado” from the worldwide circle of assassins.

That’s pal. Maybe too good, Akira argues, as she calls for her father take away John from the lodge and sever ties with the damaging murderer instantly. Shimazu rejects her plan, hiding John within the lodge till a mob of Excessive Desk killers present as much as kill him—and anybody defending him too.

From left, Rina Sawayama and Hiroyuki Sanada in “John Wick: Chapter 4”.

Murray Shut/Lionsgate

Akira is peeved. Rightfully so! Although John and her father have been longtime allies, this random man (who is understood for nothing greater than to kill every thing round him) has proven up at her lodge, put her father at risk, and made her do all of the work in cleansing up the assassins of the Excessive Desk. Males do nothing however trigger drama.

Alas, when push involves shove, Akira is able to combat again. She and John combat alongside the Osaka Continental safety (each lodge ought to include a throng of samurai, simply in case)—Akira is reluctant, however that doesn’t imply she’s going to carry again on flaunting any of her sword-wielding prowess. There’s a cause her hair is slicked again right into a modern low ’do: to maintain any free tendrils out of her face, whereas spearing menacing massive guys within the neck.

By far, Sawayama’s greatest scene within the film includes Akira knotting her total physique round one of many killers, looping her tiny legs and arms round this massive lug of a person. Have you ever ever seen a human pretzel? Effectively, I hadn’t earlier than I watched John Wick: Chapter 4. And although there’s nobody to match her to, I’d say Sawayama is the most effective human pretzel ever. She laces her legs across the killer’s arms, their neck, squeezing them together with her small (but muscular!) arms and stabbing them throughout.

Then, as a result of stairs are an extremely necessary a part of this film—we see considered one of John’s greatest battles ever on a staircase afterward—Akira has to take the scuffle upward when the Excessive Desk man begins to run away, up a big staircase. As a substitute of permitting him to get away, Akira chases him up the steps, latching herself onto his again whereas jabbing him time and again and over once more, within the legs, within the again, within the groin, within the neck. No a part of him is left unscathed, when the person falls over and Akira pounces away from her kill.

Rina Sawayama as Akira Shimazu in John Wick: Chapter 4.

Murray Shut/Lionsgate

There’s loads to rave about with regards to Akira’s kills—there are quite a bit, they usually’re all annihilating—however there’s additionally one thing to be mentioned concerning the tenderness Sawayama brings to her scene-stealing function. Although she’s solely within the first half of the film, the brand new actress reveals how a lot her character really cares for the lodge and her father; the function proves to be deeper than only a killer with main sword abilities. However that’s the enchantment of your entire John Wick franchise, isn’t it?

Extra pop-stars have been eyeing their massive breakthrough roles akin to Sawayama’s in John Wick: Chapter 4. Billie Eilish simply blew everybody away in Swarm, starring as a peaceful cult chief within the collection that will or might not be about avid Beyoncé followers. Halsey can be set to make her appearing debut in Americana, as one other cult-related character. And Megan Thee Stallion is presently in talks to star in a brand new film from the Safdie Brothers, who introduced us hits like Uncut Gems and Good Time.

This pattern isn’t new. Musicians made the transition to the massive display screen when Barbra Streisand starred in Humorous Woman, Madonna starred in Desperately In search of Susan, and Cher starred in Mamma Mia! Right here We Go Once more. (No, it was not Moonstruck nor Silkwood that did it—we pin every thing to the Mamma Mia universe.) Maybe this chance for pop stars to interrupt it massive in Hollywood is on the rise as soon as once more. It’s definitely paid off in the previous few situations. Why not get Dua Lipa, Doja Cat, and Caroline Polachek lined as much as star in our subsequent blockbusters?

One final massive spoiler: Although John Wick finally dies within the film, there’s a ultimate credit scene that opens the door for the franchise to proceed with Akira. When hitman Caine (Donnie Yen) kills her father early within the movie, she provides John an ultimatum: Both he
must kill Caine, or she’s going to do it herself. When John hasn’t killed Caine by the top of the movie, Akira arrives able to do the job.

There are two John Wick spinoffs already within the works—one concerning the accommodations, and one referred to as Ballerina starring Ana De Armas. That is my new plea: Carry again Akira/Sawayama for no less than a kind of! Or, higher but, make one other spinoff totally about her conflict with Caine. Both method, Sawayama has confirmed she’s an motion film star to be watched.