The Sunday Review: Kill Bill

Monday 2 April (2007)

kill bill 

Quentin Tarantino is probably the most hip director around. This is a double edged sword. He can pretty much do whatever he wants, based on what he thinks is ‘cool,’ but in doing so he always runs the risk of alienating his audience. With Kill Bill, he’s created (two) movies that push this envelope further than ever – but in doing so, he’s created one of the most original pieces of cinema in years.

When I rewatched these films this week, I was impressed by Tarantino’s audacity even with the opening credits. The cast were listed, sure, but not in any conventional sense. Here they were listed – and indeed, numbered – according to their place within the ‘Deadly Viper Assassination Squad’ – a name in itself loaded with kitsch. This is a director who, like Kubrick before him, has stopped being influenced by other film-makers. Or rather, he has taken his influence from other film-makers to the absolute max – everything here is (presumably) an homage to another underground film from the seventies which we’ve never seen.

The story is simple enough – revenge. Uma Thurman’s The Bride (or, Beatrix Kiddo) is out to get the titular Bill, an enigmatic hitman/mentor figure, and his crew (the aforementioned Deadly Vipers) who tried to murder her after she quit ‘the life.’ Along the way we get to see all kinds of wondrous things – the Tokyo underworld; a flashback to Kiddo’s training with the ancient Pai Mei; a desert showdown with Bill’s brother Budd. But what makes the film actuall good?

It’s hard to say. And I’m tired. So I’m going to bed, and I’ll answer that another day.


2 Responses to “The Sunday Review: Kill Bill”

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