Keanu Charles Reeves was born in Beirut, Lebanon, on September 2, 1964, the son of Patricia (née Taylor), a costume designer and performer, and Samuel Nowlin Reeves Jr. His mother is English, originating from Essex. His father is from Hawaii, and is of Chinese, English, Irish, Native Hawaiian, and Portuguese descent. His father earned a GED while serving time in prison for selling heroin at Hilo International Airport. His mother was working in Beirut when she met his father, who abandoned his wife and family when Reeves was three years old. Reeves last met his father on the island of Kauai when he was 13.
In 2013, he made his directorial debut with Man of Tai Chi. Although he was praised for his direction, the film was a box-office bomb. In 2014, Reeves played the titular assassin in the neo-noir action thriller John Wick, which was a commercial success and was generally well-received. A year later, he starred in Knock Knock and narrated two documentaries, Deep Web and Mifune: The Last Samurai. 2016 saw Reeves star in five films, including The Neon Demon, The Bad Batch, and The Whole Truth. He also starred in a web television series Swedish Dicks. He returned to the John Wick franchise in the commercially successful sequels, John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017), and John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019). In 2019, Reeves voiced Duke Caboom in Toy Story 4 (2019). Reeves has spent most of his career typecast as the action hero; "saving the world" is a recurring character arc in many roles he has portrayed, such as the characters of Ted "Theodore" Logan, Gautama Buddha, Neo, Johnny Mnemonic, John Constantine, and Klaatu. Besides acting, he played bass guitar for the band Dogstar and pursued other endeavours such as writing and philanthropy.More Info
On the night of August 8, 1969, Patricia Krenwinkel, Charles Watson, and Susan Atkins broke into Polanski's and Tate's house, leading to the murders of Tate (eight-and-a-half months pregnant), Sebring, Wojciech Frykowski, and Abigail Folger. In the film, they go to Tate's house to commit the murders but instead end up breaking into Dalton's house after he interrupts them. Linda Kasabian went along that night as she was the only Family member with a valid driver's license, though she did not murder anyone and stayed outside the whole time. In the film, she also goes along but does not participate. Watson told his victims, "I'm the Devil, and I came to do the Devil's business." In the film, he says it to Cliff Booth. In the film, Atkins convinces the others to seek revenge by killing Rick Dalton, star of a TV western. Since TV taught them to kill, it is fitting they kill the guy from TV, and "My idea is to kill the people who taught us to kill!" In real life, Manson Family member Nancy Pitman said: "We are what you have made us. We were brought up on your TV. We were brought up watching Gunsmoke and Have Gun – Will Travel." Sandra Good said: "You want to talk about devils and demonic and immorals and evil, go to Hollywood. We don't touch the evil of that world. We don't even skim it."More Info
However, according to members of the Family, the murders were not committed to start Helter Skelter but as copycat murders of Gary Hinman, to convince police his killer was still at large. Bobby Beausoleil was in jail, charged with the murder. The Family was attempting to get him released. According to Jay Sebring's protege and business partner Jim Markham, the murders were about a drug deal gone bad, not a race war. He believes Manson was at Tate's house the day before the murders to sell drugs to Sebring and Voytek Frykowski, which resulted in the two beating Manson up. In his interview with Truman Capote, Beausoleil said, "They burned people on dope deals. Sharon Tate and that gang."More Info
Charles Manson was convicted of the murders of Tate and four others, despite not being present, due mostly to a theory stating he was trying to instigate an apocalyptic race war, in the end leaving only black Muslims and the Manson Family. The black Muslims would eventually look to Manson to lead them. According to some, Manson referred to the race war as Helter Skelter, getting the name from the song of the same name. Musician and filmmaker Boots Riley criticized the film for not portraying Helter Skelter or depicting the Family as white supremacists.More Info
The action thriller Speed (1994), in which Reeves was cast as a police officer, garnered critical and commercial success, and helped Reeves gain further recognition. He followed this with a series of films box office failures, including: Johnny Mnemonic (1995), Chain Reaction (1996), and The Last Time I Committed Suicide (1997). However, his performance in the supernatural horror The Devil's Advocate (1997) was well received. Global stardom followed soon after with his lead role as computer hacker Neo in the science fiction thriller The Matrix (1999). The film was a commercial success and won four Academy Awards, although its sequels, Reloaded and Revolutions (both in 2003) were met with a mixed reception. In 2005, Reeves played exorcist John Constantine in Constantine and a dentist in the comedy-drama Thumbsucker. He also starred in the animated film A Scanner Darkly (2006), the romantic drama The Lake House (2006), the science fiction thriller The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008), and the crime thriller Street Kings (2008).More Info
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