How Much Is One Gold Coin Worth?

The universe of John Wick is a very intriguing nocturnal mafia-ridden New York City, in which any seemingly ordinary person could potentially be a skilled high-end assassin. There are many great things about John Wick‘s universe, among them are the gold coins universally utilized by the gangsters and mobsters of the criminal underworld. John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum already showed viewers how and where the coins are manufactured, but the franchise has not revealed a numeric value for them.


Unsurprisingly, viewers often ask themselves how much one of those coins is worth. While it is possible to use the measurements of the coins and the value per weight of gold to calculate how much one of them is worth in dollars (somewhere between $2,000 and $5,000), in the John Wick universe, the monetary value of the coins do not matter. The coins are metaphorical vessels that symbolizes a favor.

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But, how much is a favor worth? Well, it depends. The philosophies that fuel John Wick’s universe are surprisingly complex. The gold coins, in and of themselves, have no inherent monetary value. A single coin can pay for many services or products, like a doctor’s appointment, a cadaver’s disposal, a drink, or a taxi ride, among other things. There is no dollar conversion rate for the coins, as they are more than just money. Which would lead to the follow-up question of: why do they need money then? Well, while the John Wick movies often leave many questions unanswered (which is very much likely to be intentional to create mystery), viewers often theorize to draw conclusions.

How Does Money Work In The John Wick Universe?

Hand holding a pile of gold coins (John Wick)

If the gold coins are but symbolic trinkets of someone’s integrity within the underground crime world, one can assume that regular money works in the same good old-fashioned way in the films, even if viewers never really get to see characters use actual money as currency in the movies. The assassination contracts are paid in US dollars, as is the case of the $14 million bounty on John’s head for his violation of the rules at the end of Chapter 2. In the universe of John Wick, honor plays an essential role, perhaps being even more important than money itself. It is no surprise that what kicks off the first movie’s plot is John getting back into action for a personal vendetta against Iosef (Alfie Owen-Allen), an immature young man who lacks any honor or respect. Also, the fate of Ms. Perkins (Adrianne Palicki) in the first movie is a testament to what happens when one breaks the unyielding rules of the Continental. “Rules… without them, we live with the animals”, quotes Winston (Ian McShane) in Chapter 2.

What About The Markers?

Hand Holding A Marker (John Wick)

There is, still, another puzzling piece of this creative franchise’s economy. In Chapter 2, Santino D’Antonio (Riccardo Scamarcio) presents a marker that John Wick owes him. Diving even deeper into honor and integrity as the main thematic principles for the franchise, a marker is the ultimate symbol of one person’s debts with another. A marker is only evoked when one needs a colossal favor from someone else and is willing to pay it back when the time comes. Signed in bloody fingerprints, there is no denying the severity of the marker, and the sheer betrayal that is dishonoring it. John knew that his life was forfeit the moment he denied Santino’s favor, but tried it anyway. The irony of it all is that while Santino might be a selfish, ambitious-driven man who is willing to end his own sister’s life for his political and financial benefits, he never breaks any of the Continental’s rules. John, on the other hand, breaks the rules and is declared excommunicado.

With John Wick: Chapter 4 on the horizon, it’s almost time for viewers all around the world to hopefully enjoy yet another insane entry in this top-tier franchise fans have grown to love. If great action sequences, interesting story, compelling characters, stunning visuals, and an engaging world were not enough, John Wick is also an incredibly intricate movie with a lot to analyze and theorize upon.

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