Last night (or rather, early this morning), Not Another Teen Movie was on HBO. I flipped to it to kill ten minutes, and Boy and I wound up watching the whole thing. Again. It's an embarrassing movie to like, but no more so than the movies it spoofs, almost all of which I've also seen.
And it spoofs them so entertainingly that it's sort of impossible not to enjoy. It's not brilliant stuff, but I love it for sheer randomness, in the form of albino folk singers, retarded football players, and cheerleaders with Tourette's. Not that I'm all about the medical malady humor. There's a running gag of people off-camera shouting incredibly odd things at the people on-screen. It's definitely a "you had to be there" kind of joke, but Boy and I laughed at it until 3 am. It's just an intensely silly movie, and I'm a big fan of intensely silly. It's also a little bit cruel, and we all know how I like my pop-culture cruel.
Then there's intensely violent, and less-fun cruelty. This afternoon, as if for balance (though we'd planned it days ago), Boy and I went to see Kill Bill. I'd never actually seen a Quentin Tarantino film before; I've just never really been interested. (This tends to surprise people, but trust me there are far more surprising things I've never seen in my Netflix queue, which has just topped 400 -- I'd like to be a proper film geek but I just don't have the time or money.) The hype around Kill Bill, plus my affection for Lucy Liu, Boy's desire to see it, and my local theater's $4.50 matinees made me interested in this one.
I never thought I wouldn't like it, but I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. I'd been warned that because of the way the film was never intended to be in two parts, "Volume 1" doesn't really have an ending, and I thought this would annoy me. But it's not really true. I thought the ending was just fine for a film you know has a sequel coming, a clear end of an act. At the same time, I can't think of anything that I would have wanted cut, even during the [spoiler #1], and yet if the film had been twice as long it would have been kind of relentless.
It's just a highly entertaining and beautifully shot film. I've never seen such inspired use of [spoiler #2]. Every shot was probably a reference to something I didn't get, but it didn't matter at all. I got totally wrapped up in the world of the film, and cared about the characters. I've never had any opinion about Uma Thurman one way or another, but she's kinda fabulous in this. And it's either some of the most impressive stunt work by regular actors I've ever seen, or some of the best editing of stuntpeople I've ever seen.
I'm a little afraid that I might actually become a Tarantino fan. I've always had the sense that he's incredibly vain and self-indulgent. Owen Gleiberman, whose reviews in Entertainment Weekly I usually enjoy, sounded like he'd been brainwashed by a cult in his review of Kill Bill. I hate to join that cult, but I suspect that's just my contrary nature coming out. So for now I'm going to rent Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction and say that I can't wait for "Volume 2!"
I've actually read that some "industry insiders" hypothesize that Tarantino secretly always intended for it to be two movies - given the length of script/amount of footage that was shot, and his apparent lack of concern that he seemed to be making a 4+ hour movie (b/c only Altman's allowed to do that!).
I think you'll like Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction, btw. Just my two cents.
mcm | Email | Homepage | 10.20.03 - 9:56 am | #
dude, your spoilercall links aren't working.
i saw it over the weekend too, and wow. i liked it, but i actually like tarantino's dialogue, which was, well, missing from 'kill bill'. there's lots more quentin to see, and personally i don't think this one even touched 'pulp fiction', which i really want to rewatch now.
go reorder your netflix list and enjoy.
me | Email | Homepage | 10.20.03 - 11:26 am | #