Kill Bill vol. 1 hit theaters in October of last year. It sliced and diced its way to the top and into its way of the hearts of fans everywhere. It left us with unfinished business to be concluded in Kill Bill vol. 2. In this conclusion/preclusion of the continuing story, we learn a lot more about the past, the present, and the past (yes I said that twice.)
Let’s bring up the most apparent point first. This installment is far less violent than the first. However, after seeing the first one, I still became ungodly nervous every time that sword was unscathed. I really thought there would be another God awful massacre like the first film, The Bride vs. The Crazy 88′s. Most of the audience loved the ultra violence of the first film, I found it to be a bit overkill (pun intended.) Instead this film takes the route of explaining the first film, and itself, in lengthy dialogue scenes. There is no doubt of Tarantino’s ability as a filmmaker, but I really think that these films could have worked a hellavalot better had he put his dignity aside for a moment and condensed them into one film. Separately they are off balance, the first film having 90% of the violence and the second having 90% of the story.
Quentin’s directing is amazing, as usual. If anything about these films it’s great fun to watch the shot selection he chose. In this film especially, I was really captivated by the Chapter “The Lonely Grave Of Paula Schultz.” I believe that chapter best demonstrates the all around greatness of Tarantino. From the ambient sound effects to the way the camera is framing each character, to the dialogue, the acting… it all comes together perfectly like a puzzle to add extra internal feeling, rather than blatantly hitting us over the head with how we should feel like he does with some of the scenes towards the end. Has anyone counted just how many feet shots he had?
The acting in this film is one of its greatest pros. It’s not hard to tell that each actor put in everything they had into their parts. Uma Thurman really did give the performance of her career in it. I wasn’t too convinced with the first one, but this one definitely made my thoughts on that solid. It was interesting to see the performance of David Carradine, which was amazing, and trying to picture Warren Beatty pulling it off. I’m sure he could have, but it wouldn’t've been the same I don’t believe. Carradine and Thurman had some sort of on screen chemistry that is rare to find on the screen nowadays. The performance I think I most liked was Michael Madsen though. When we are first introduced to him, we want to like him… but that quickly changes. From start to finish he carries his character very well.
All in all, Kill Bill vol. 2 will deliver the much wanted answers to the first film, but, even though I wasn’t disappointed, I can see why a lot of people would be going into it expecting the “bloody satisfaction” from the first film. I guess my best advice to people who haven’t seen this yet is don’t view it as two separate films, just one that got cut in half… which technically is what it is. Just wait until the ‘ultimate’ Kill Bill DVD comes out when the both of them are combined and you get to see the film as it was originally intended, directors cut, with fifty discs of bonus features. I think then you’ll be able to fully appreciate its true art.
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