First Hit: Well filmed, acted and directed and despite the graphic violence it was very entertaining.
Pulp Fiction was good, and Inglorious Basterds is better, a lot better because it's cohesive and flows very well.
Brad Pitt stars in this untrue story about WWII where, in one night, the Allies win the war. Pitt plays Lt. Aldo Raine a hillbilly kind of guy that has one thing on his mind, killing Nazis.
Raine is part Indian which sets up the reason his team scalps the Germans he kills. He puts together a group of Jewish soldiers and their goal is simply to kill as many Nazis as they can and they do this with gusto.
Killing with this fervor and style, endows this group with the name of Inglourious Basterds (and we're never in control of what others call us, are we).
Although Pitt is the marquee star in this film he is not the central story. The central story is about Shosanna Dreyfus (played by Melanie Laurent) a Jewish woman who, as a young girl, escaped the clutches of Nazi Col. Hans Landa (played by Christoph Waltz) chief Jew hunter and executioner in France.
This is a story about her having the opportunity to plot a revenge on the Nazi commanders. The story is played out in chapters which are titled and provide an easy context to the next set of scenes in the story.
Often, obvious chapter headings such as these can detract from a film, but here, just like the three languages spoken with subtitles, all of this adds to the feeling of the movie.
As the film plays out it becomes apparent that stereotypes are played to the hilt which add depth to the characters because most of the actors mine these stereotypes finding their origination in a truth of sorts. Watch Waltz as Landa to see the best example of this.
Lastly the scenes are beautifully decorated and highlighted in a meticulous fashion which, along with the music, kept this film smoking through its 2 hours and 32 minute running time.
Pitt’s performance was good and entertaining but didn’t match the level and depth of others such as Waltz. Waltz’s performance was incredible. He pushed the SS stereo type all the way and added enormous depth and intelligence. The very first scene sets him up as a major player in this film. Laurent was very effective as a woman with a false identity and never forgetting about what was done to her family. Her revenge is wonderfully orchestrated. Quentin Tarantino’s direction was extraordinary as he orchestrated his own script by pulling powerful performances out of the entire cast. One of the things I noted was how some scenes were left to expand and evolve while others were quick and to the point - beautiful.
Overall: The best Tarantino film yet and if you can get through the graphic violence, I say go see it.