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Bang! Bang!

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Finally got out to see Kill Bill on Saturday night. What I saw was anime come to life… the part that wasn’t actual anime, of course. Tarantino has combined the more over-the-top elements of graphic novels (characters bleed… a lot) with 70’s B-movie staples like spaghetti westerns, blacksploitation films and Bruce Lee kung fu movies to create a strange little piece that sometimes doesn’t quite know if it’s a parody or not. The movie veers from Airplane-style sight gags (Darryl Hannah’s eyepatch, samurai sword holsters everywhere) to gruesome revenge (just everybody lose a limb why don’tcha?) back to playful dialog (silly rabbit…) without blinking. It’s even got a Jedi… er… Samurai master. I half expected David Carradine to pop up and call Uma Thurman “grasshopper”. (Oh, yeah, he’s in it, too.)

Uma is great as the heroine–alternately monikered “The Bride” or an annoying beeping noise. She slices and dices and makes thousands and thousands of julienne fries out of her enemies, kicking major butt. There’s nothing phony about her moves (other than, of course, the intentionally phony, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon ones). And she brings just the right combination of serious kickass and raised eyebrows to the role. The rest of the cast is pretty good, too–especially Lucy Liu as Japanese crime lord, O-Ren Ishii. Darryl Hannah’s small role is a hoot. And Vivica Fox and Michael Parks make the most out of their screen time, as well.

I really liked the music and most of the direction, though it seemed a tad long, and some of the lengthy closeups got tedious after awhile. I don’t think it was necessary to split the thing into two parts (this is only the beginning), but that’s hard to say without knowing what’s coming next.

Overall, I’d give it a decent score, though it’s not for everyone. The Mrs. despised it, other than the actual comic-book section and some of the humor. She got the gushing blood joke after the first 40 or so victims and really didn’t need to see anymore. And I can see her point. But I can still say that I’m looking forward to the second act of this little play.

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  • Eric Olsen

    Thanks S, welcome back! A strange but recurring theme in our accumulating reviews of this is that it was disgusting but you liked it anyway. Except for those who thought it was disgusting but loved it anyway.