Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Inglourious Bastards (2009)

I try not to miss Tarantino’s films. I enjoy them more often than not. But for some reason I never got around to checking this one out until recently. I couldn’t quite wrap my head around him doing a war film. I should have known that this isn’t exactly a war film at all.

In the middle of World War II a cast of characters is on a collision course with fate. First there’s Lt. Raine (Brad Pitt) and his Jewish crew of Nazi killers. These guys have created an unstoppable force that is putting the fear of God back into the Germans. Then there’s Shosanna (Melanie Laurent) a lovely woman who owns a movie theater. A chance encounter with a Nazi actor, Fredrick Zoller (Daniel Bruhl) gives her a chance at the ultimate revenge. Finally there is the deadly and charming Col. Landa (Christoph Waltz) whose skills in hunting down people (and Jews in particular) is about to be severely tested. The movie climaxes with explosions, shootouts and an inferno. But really did you expect a movie called Inglorious Bastards to end any other way?

Good Points:
  • Really ratchets up the tension in key scenes
  • Christoph Waltz steals nearly every scene he’s in
  • Has some great Tarantino lines

Bad Points:
  • The tone seems a bit inconstant in this one
  • Some of the Tarantino dialogue just doesn’t click in subtitles
  • The violence is going bother some viewers

Another solid film by Tarantino, I enjoyed it quite a bit. However this felt like it was trying to be a little too epic to be the trashy good fun I expected to find. This made the film difficult to completely enjoy because I wasn’t sure if I should be laughing or deeply disturbed. In the end, I figured this will required another viewing in the future. I’ve found I enjoy his work more with each viewing.

Scores (out of 5)
Visuals: 4
Sound: 4
Acting: 4
Script: 4
Music: 4
Direction: 4
Entertainment: 4
Total:  4

Curious about a full review, sent me an email and I’ll make additional thoughts to this review.


  1. All movies, in a sense, offer fictionalized alternate histories, but there is a point beyond which a history rewrite makes me uncomfortable, e.g. "Hey let's make another Napoleon movie, but this time let's have him win at Waterloo." I'm not sure I'd want to see that. I had a similar response to the concept of this film and so never got around to seeing it. Still, I do understand the pleasures of wish-fulfillment of the sort offered in this plot, and I do like Tarantino. I'll give it a try.

  2. Yeah I can see where you're coming from. My wife didn't know much about the film and found the ending to be so ridiculous it kinda ruined the movie for her. If you approach it as a kind of pulpy fantasy film with tons of great Tarantino style, I think you'll have a good time.