When you sit down for a Tarantino film, you’re getting yourself in for two things; talking (a lot of talking), and violence (levels may vary).
I finally got around to seeing Inglourious Basterds yesterday (in a veritable orgy of filmography) which came highly recommended from a number of friends.
It just might be his best yet.
The last I saw of his was Deathproof which was heavy, heavy on the talking and some pretty freaking nasty violence, but the talking put me to sleep. Nothing of the conversations worked for me in this film. Inglourious Basterds managed to pull it off straight, and knit it all into a rather cunning plot. Oh yeah, and there is still a good deal of violence in there, but this time around it didn’t feel gratuitous.
Inglourious Basterds is about a crack team of Jewish Americans working in Nazi occupied France to kill Nazi’s. Plain and simple there. But quickly the movie begins to focus on an operation that could end the war in one quick, simple move.
Although the movie isn’t exactly an action packed and fast paced one, it builds, and nothing is ever wasted. Scenes that seem to have no baring on things end up doing so. Even at two and half hours, there’s no fat that could be trimmed off this one.
Brad Pitt seems to be a total unlikely choice as the lead of the group, with his almost farcical American accent (which gets him in trouble later in the film, in a rather amusing scene). And of course, the character of Colonel Landa stands out brilliantly as the highlight of the film. The cool talking gentleman, with the brutal, threatening undertone.
Although there is a lot of talking in this film, it pays off. There’s always a twist or hook that makes the sitting through it worth while. And there’s a certain brilliance in the dialog this time around.
Does it beat Pulp Fiction? Perhaps not, but it comes damn near close.