Forgive my pun, but I'm as excited as the next to see the fan pleasing, veteran auteur Quentin Tarantinos' next film Inglorious Basterds. I'm not entirely sure what he's trying to accomplish with this but the plot revolves around a group of Nazi hunting Jews lead by Aldo Raine (portrayed by Brad Pitt who looks to be ready to deliver Burn After Reading level hilarity). And like most Tarantino films it will feature a wide array of eccentric characters including a maniacal, but suave Nazi official portrayed by Austrian, Christoph Waltz and a bloodloving Jewish man with a baseball bat portrayed by Eli Roth. I'm especially excited to see what Waltz' performance will be like, he won the Cannes award for Best Actor.
It opens this week and I'm eager to see what Quentin will do with this risque premise. Undoubtebly something witty, edgy, and stylish. It makes me think back on all his other films that I've watched...Jackie Browne, Kill Bill, Reservoir Dogs, Sin City, Deathproof and of course the film that really made him famous Pulp Fiction.
Which is why I feel as if I should list off my Top 3 favourite Tarantino films. Here's a spoiler, Pulp Fiction isn't in third place.
3. Sin City
This wasn't a lone Tarantino project. Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller both co-directed with Quentin, however to the trained eye, one can notice his hand appears quite often in the storytelling. The increasingly non-linear plot and the freewheeling, cariectur-esque but still sympathetic performances (notably Mickey Rourke as Marv). It's wide array of characters suits Tarantino's style and the movie revels in his input. He should adapt more comic books. Maybe he should have adapted Watchmen...that would have made sense does anyone else agree? Too late now...
2. Kill Bill Volumes One and Two
I have a feeling that this movie is where Tarantino felt most comfortable behind the camera. The constant samurai references, the standoffs, the honour finally get put to proper use in this film. And of course it makes complete use of his other quirks: frequent, fitting use of popular music, non-linear storytelling, and obvious, but deep performances from his players. Did I mention that the intensity is so mounting that you can hardly ever tell when the film peaks?
1. Pulp Fiction
Did you honestly expect any other film to reach this spot? Not only is it my favourite film by Quentin Tarantino, it is my favourite film all together. No other film reaches such a stylistic resonance, with such depth. Yes this movie is deep in superficiality yet its superficial in its depth. In the load of snappy-gangsterland camp, the dark neo-noir, and even occasional spirtual findings, what is there on the surface has never been stronger, deeper, or more emotionally/mentally grabbing. Ten levels of epic, and one of the few films I've ever watched that really earns an A+.
I've trusted Tarantino for years now and he's only ever totally lost me once (even though I liked Death Proof more than a lot of people let's still forget it ever happeend). Will it be a slamdunk again? Hope to God so.