:: Sunday, October 12, 2003 ::
This weeks movies:
"Kill Bill: Volume 1": 8 of 10 "In Theaters Now". Relentless entertainment without a pause. I wanted to see Clint Eastwood's "Mystic River" this weekend, because Eastwood is one of my favorite directors, the buzz is Oscar-worthy, and I'm just sure Clint might get to have another of those golden statuettes in his hand some time this coming April, but "River" is playing on only three screens in LA this week, and I missed it. By about 10 minutes, to tell the truth. Because I couldn't find a parking place in the garage by the AMC Century 14.
Instead, a choice at the local multiplex between the Coen's "Intolerable Cruelty" and the "4th Film by Quentin Tarantino", the relentless "Kill Bill".
The Coen film seemed to much, to me anyway, by viewing the previews, to be a standard romantic comedy, and I remember being excited to see, and then disappointed by after I saw their immensely popular "Oh Brother Where Art Thou", and didn't want to brave the same kind of disappointment.
Instead, I saw "Bill" (Only his hands in Vol. I) and spent the afternoon wandering the back aisles of Quentin Tarantino's Memory Video Store.
Relentless, as I just said. Unwavering entertainment consisting of enough severed limbs and movie references to making me long for the day when they sell the DVD in the lobby so I can "rewind" and "review". There are so many wonderful filmic tricks, sweeping camera moves, and frenetic editing, not to mention a brief but beautifully bloody anime section, that viewing this film once is, like De Palma's "Femme Fatale", is futile. This viewing is merely the preamble to the full experience. (Which continues in February with the release of the second part.
I only give "Kill Bill" an 8 because it's not done yet. I do gush (and that's an apt word) when thinking of Quentin's 4th film. The critics have all mentioned the lack of plot, or more specifically, the "simple revenge scenario." Well, as with all great opera, and operatic films, such as, say "Moulin Rouge", even though that's a musical and this is a drive-in exploitation spaghetti samauri bloodbath, the simple plot is merely the hook to hang the cloak of moviemaking wonder and multiple themes, and Quentin overdoes himself.
I got to thinking, perhaps this is not as grand as I had wished, coming off of (six years ago!) "Jackie Brown", but it's even grander in retrospect.
Don't go if you feint at the sight of blood. More blood is spilled and or/gushes/flows/spurts/pumps than in any movie of recent and perhaps past memory. The setpieces are a filmgoer's feast. The restaruant scene is to die for. There's allusions and references to every thing from Star Trek, de Palma, Ennio Morricone, Bruce Lee, and Run Run Shaw, to the old "Feature Presentation" reels and bad sound editing which show up on all the old drive in exploitation films Quentin loves and so reverentially pays homage to here.
I don't think "Bill" is for everybody. "A man's film" is what my friend said upon leaving the theater, and he looked at his watch quite a few times during the feature.
As I said, relentless entertainment.
Quentin can be proud.
I also saw "You've Got Mail" and "A Man for All Seasons" again on DVD. I love those old English play/movies like "A Man" where the setpieces are all filmed on old castles that look old, instead of new, as they were when the events took place. I thought it weird back then, and do now. But the acting is great.
:: Michael Nyiri 11:20 PM Leave a Comment on this Post ::