The more time I’ve spent chewing on this film, the more I love it. I’m weary of hearing from so-called “fans” of Tarantino who basically just want him to remake “Pulp Fiction” over and over, crime movies filled with people talking about pop culture. I saw some comment earlier today on YouTube about the trailer for the new Thomas Pynchon book, where someone said, “Oh, man, this looks like the film that Tarantino should have made after ‘Pulp Fiction’!”
God, how depressing. You know what he made after “Pulp Fiction”? “Jackie Brown.” And “Jackie Brown” sort of totally rocks.
I really don’t understand why fandom wants filmmakers to get stuck in these professional stutters. To me, what makes a filmmaker worthwhile isn’t just the subject matter he deals with, but the voice with which he tells his story. And in Tarantino’s case, I’d say that voice is just as crystal-clear and well-defined today as it’s ever been. He loves to let his characters talk, aaaaaaand talk and talk and talk and talk, and in talking, they reveal themselves. It’s one of his signatures, and I’d argue a real gift when he’s firing on all cylinders, and I find that more often than not, I am rewarded for the time I spend with these people as they talk.
In this first clip, Lt. Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt) has an entirely reasonable conversation with a Nazi prisoner:
[more after the jump]
“And, cousin’, business is-a boomin’!”
The second clip comes late in the film, after some plans have gone disastrously wrong. Aldo is trying to figure out if they can still move forward, and Bridget von Hammersmark (Diane Kruger) lays some serious news on him. If you’re afraid of spoilers, this is the clip to skip, because it’s a pretty big moment. But this also gives you a great sense of the style of the film, so if you’re curious…
“There have been two developments…”
And then there’s this final clip, which is more of a tease of a clip, an introduction to a character. The character, some might say. Hans Landa, the Jew Hunter. A perfect portrait of grinning insinuating evil and rot. It’s a fantastic performance by Christoph Waltz. There’s a reason he was rewarded at Cannes this year. Even if this film wasn’t quite in fighting shape yet, I’m sure his work shone through. He’s amazing. And the opening sequence of the movie, which is a showcase for Waltz, is one of the finest moments of Tarantino’s career so far. The exact right way to set up the images that close the film. The set-up to the oh-so-beautiful payoff.
Meet Hans Landa:
The movie opens August 21st, and we’ll have some great “Inglorious Basterds” content here on HitFix between now and then.
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