Quentin Tarantino is the death of cinema. Instead of artistic seriousness we are asked to take seriously a mouthy video store clerk with no taste and no imagination. I depise him with every fiber of my being.
I trust you all know that Reservoir Dogs got its title from a customer request for a certain “ferrin film” supposedly so named. After duly considering the matter QT realized the customer was referring to
(wait for it)
Au Revoir les Enfants.
More Louis Malle, please.
Alas, he’s dead.
Hank: The three QT films you have seen, are his best.
WOW, thats fucked up
Well, I’m sold!
Easily his best film since Jackie Brown, I absolutely loved the shit out of it. Christoph Waltz was a pleasure to behold and I haven’t enjoyed a Brad Pitt performance so much since Seven.
On the whole, I really enjoyed Inglourious Basterds. Considerably more than the Kill Bills. My real problem with Tarantino is his use of “gimmicks.” I use the word gimmicks because I used to do magic and was always disappointed when a trick needed a contraption to make it work, and thus cannot be performed on the spot. That was my problem with the Kill Bill’s and the reason I didn’t see Death Proof. The Kill Bills were just Tarantino making a sword fighting/asian inspired movie. Obviously that is simplifying things, and there were plenty of great moments in the Kill Bills, but that is all they were to me, great moments that did not save the movie. Both volumes were better than most mainstream movies I’ve seen, but I expect more from the director behind Pulp Fiction. I avoided Death Proof because the focus seemed to be on recreating the Grindhouse feeling. I wasn’t interested in seeing a recreation of shitty movies. So because of his use of gimmicks, I was very nervous going into Inglourious Basterds, especially after seeing the trailer, which made to movie look like all style no substance. The only thing that really pulled me into the theaters was the sentence “The Basterds soon cross paths with a French-Jewish teenage girl who runs a movie theater in Paris which is targeted by the soldiers” in the imdb plot summary. This is essentially why I enjoyed the film so much. The opening scene and the continuation of the Shoshanna story line made me feel ok with the Basterds scenes. There is only so much of me that can see the Basterds scenes without becoming very bored, and the Shoshanna sequences kept me from hating the whole movie, and, in turn, made it possible for me to enjoy the Basterds scenes (especially the scene in the Tavern). Christoph Waltz’s performance was amazing. I was a little disappointed with Brad Pitt, but I think that is more the fault of the trailer than a poor performance by Brad Pitt. So, on the whole, It was certainly worth the 8 dollars I paid, and I would rank this movie up there with Reservoir Dogs and just below Pulp Fiction.
No, Brad Pitt embarrassed himself in this film, and for a bad actor that’s really saying something.
Simon: reading your post just now made me realize why I hated the Basterds storyline so much:
Tarantino has always made such a big deal of his ambition to do a men-on-a-mission in the style of Dirty Dozen and Guns of Navarone. Well, if this was that film then what a hack he is, cause he basically shit on those films (and they were B at best) with the Basterds storyline.
THAT’s his homage to those films? What a joke. Had he focused solely on the Shoshanna storyline he might have had something—surely there was enough in his commentary on film (film was actually a protagonist against the Nazis in this movie), language, etc. that he could have fleshed it out enough.
As it stands its an unfocused mess with some god-awful (and some truly wonderful) sequences. This is why I said he has taken a step forward but only into a pile of shit. He’s done nothing to move himself forward because he’s undercut himself at the same time.
Did Pitt really need the paycheck. DeNiro proved that Quinton doesn’t mind if you mail one in but why would Pitt want to make himself look like a dope?
surely there was enough in his commentary on …. language
Trunk Shot channeling Noam Chomsky? I for one couldn’t take it.
De Niro certainly did not mail it in. He was playing an ex con who was readjusting to civilian life on top of being a lazy stoner as well as an idiot. He played the part perfectly and the end result was hilarious.
This is the best film Tarantino’s ever done. It is an incredible meditation, if not on war, than on the war movie. On the myth and why it’s better than the truth.
I mean UGH! Tarantino! More like PEDANTIC-ino!
Loved it. :)
Anyone else love how extremely non-Jewish Pitt was?
In regards to the Jews acting like Nazis debate – I think there’s something to that. Tarantino’s film is obviously a fantasy – but what makes it interesting is that he’s all too willing to problematise that fantasy: his use of violence, characters dying, plots being foiled, the german father being shot. Even when he does completely fulfill the fantasy, he does it in a way that problematises history! When Brad Pitt is going on talking about the evilness of the Nazi, it comes straight after Waltz is explaining the dirty nature of the Jew. I think Tarantino is making at least some kind of parallel there. The basterds are bastards after all. There’s going to be no mercy when they kill – the enjoyment is purely the enjoyment of eye for an eye violence.
Squiffle, Pitt isn’t supposed to be Jewish. He rounded up a group of Jewish soldiers because he thought they would be the only ones with the same intensity and blood thirst as him. Am I right?
Drew: I couldn’t tell because that part of the story was done so poorly.
Ooo Josh a bit harsh don’t you think? Did you not even find those parts entertaining?
Yeah, I thought Pitt’s character was not Jewish. He’s a hick from Tennessee. If the accent didn’t give it away, certainly his line saying “I’m from Tennessee” was a dead give away.
Because obviously they don’t have Jews in Tennessee. Everybody knows that.
i think the basterd sequences were very cool although they did seem somewhat out of place.
pitt was so bad it was awsome
I found the bar scene VERY entertaining (and it did not include Brad Pitt for the most part), but as the only really crucial plot element to that scene was the injury of von Hammersmark, it again struck me how useless the effing basterds were. It could have been anyone with her.
I thought the lineup scene was lame (and I’d seen it a million times in the trailer), the ditch scene was ineffective (again, Brad and Eli and a lack of tension doing the damage), and the rest… well, nope.
Christopher Waltz in response to the following quote made by Landa:
“I’m aware what tremendous feats human beings are capable of once they abandon dignity.”
“I have a sort of convoluted theory that, to tell the truth, is too complicated to disclose. In the wake of the emergence of cognitive sciences, this whole thing came in motion that philosophers and psychologists and neurologists started to discuss that there is no defined reality. Reality as we perceive it is actually a construction. And language plays an important part in it. Language has a transformative quality. Language can cause reality into existence. If you think of it, especially we who work in media, how we use language to create a form of reality that is considered the reality. Whereas why would that be reality when something else isn’t? This whole thing is a bit complex, but that links a bit to your idea about the sociopath, whereas I say he is a social virtuoso. These quantum leaps he can take between various layers of reality.”
To me this says a lot about what QT was trying to do with myth/history/language/cinema in the film, and this is a theme that interests me greatly and one of the reasons I want to see it again.
Josh, But except for a few killing montages and one liners, were the Basterds even in it at all?
When thinking about Pitt’s screen time I really think it was a small fraction of the film.
I agree about the main them of myths/legends. There is some connection between Hitler laughing at the movie where all of those men are shot, and the audience laughing at all of the Nazis being shot. Even if we don’t want to admit it, and Tarantino doesn’t want to admit it, there is something there.
One thing that bothered me was that he chickened out on the Zoller character. Here was a character who was actually kind of sympathetic. He was clearly bothered by being portrayed onscreen killing, and he seemed to genuinely like Shosanna. It was one of the first depictions I can remember of a Nazi as a human being, which would have tied in nicely with the film. Where the shoe is on the other foot and the Nazis are slaughtered, do we cheer? Should we cheer when any human dies? That’s what bothered me about Zoller’s little turn at the end where he pushes Shosanna. Then the audience WANTS Shoshanna to shoot him. Imagine if instead she was forced to kill him and he did nothing but like her, perhaps he doesn’t even shoot her back. That would have said a lot more and made me think a lot deeper about the film. As is, I don’t think there’s a lot of depth to it.
I don’t know I think he lost me when he got a date out of her by using his power and fame. From then on I hated him, pushing Shosanna or not.
Overall, the film for me wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t a self-proclaimed “masterpiece” either. It was peppered with great moments and occasionally great scenes (The opening farm scene, most of the basement scene). I actually enjoyed Brad Pitt much more than I anticipated, and thought that he had nearly spot-on delivery. Of course, Christoph Waltz was the highlight of the film (calling attention again to the opening farm scene), although I don’t know if the resolution with his character worked for me. Eli Roth was okay. I definitely loved the integration of French, German, and Italian completely into the film. As a matter of fact, it seemed to me at least 60% of the film was not in English, which was a welcome departure from most war films.
When I had heard that QT was going to incorporate all those languages, and have subtitles, I kind of thought it might be a little gimmick of his. But, I was proved wrong when the differences in languages and accents played a crucial role in a number of scenes for both dramatic and comedic effects. The tavern scene was a masterpiece of prolonged tension through dialogue exchanges – and most of that tension rests on who’s speaking what language when, and how well they’re speaking it.
Natham M, agree about the Tavern scene, they don’t make shit like that anymore.
Drew, you are right in saying Pitt isn’t supposed to be Jewish. He rounded up a group of Jewish soldiers because he thought they would be the only ones with the same intensity and blood thirst as him
Did anyone see this with anyone who wasn’t a film lover? I mean 99% of people are anti-subtitle so I wonder if they pissed the average person off.