If one movie has been rumored about it’s Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds which would’ve originally starred Michael Madsen amongst other. Well the wait is over, Michael Madsen is nowhere to be found and we get treated to a fairytale of World War 2. You know, when the Nazi had Europe in their grip. But now you want to know, was it worth the wait?
HELL YEAH! Man did I have a blast when watching this film. I didn’t know what to expect as it is a World War 2 movie. Most of them are dead serious and deal with facts. Next to that the reception varied wildly and people either raved about the movie or ranted about it. As you might have guessed by now, I’m part of the raving crowd.
I assume everybody has seen the trailers or knows what the movie’s about. For those who don’t here’s a small synopsis: The Basterds are a group of American Soldiers deep behind enemy lines who kill Nazis. They are plotting to bring the war to an end by assassinating high German officials who attend a premier of a propaganda movie. Unbeknown to them is that the owner of the theater is cooking up some plot of herself as she is a surviving Jew now in hiding.
I’ve read some complaints that Brad Pitt, who the trailers were centered around, wasn’t in the movie that much at all, 20 minutes max. I have to disagree with that complaint. Sure he wasn’t in every frame and first enters the stage after 20 minutes in the movie but his appearances never feel like only 20 minutes of screen time. He shows up from time to time when the script requires him to, he has great dialogue when he’s on screen and does a lot over the coarse of the movie. His character serves the plot instead of the movie revolving around his character just because he’s a big name in Hollywood. Compare his role to Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction. He was only in two segments but everybody remembers him.
Another character that can be compared to Samuel L. Jackson is Colonel Landa played by Christoph Waltz. He is totally convincing and very eerie as a man nicknamed “The Jewhunter”. His performance reminded me not only that of Jackson but also that of the late Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight. Every now and then an actor comes along who embodies a role, who knows just to ham it up to the right tone before losing himself in overacting and making his character a joy to watch making you crave for more scenes with him. I had that with Heaths Joker, I have it with Colonel Landa. The guy was just a treat to watch even if he embodies pure evil. His character is responsible for dozens of scenes which have this great underlying tension really grabbing you by the throat and pulling you into the movie.
I loved this film and it entertained me almost its entire running time. Yup almost. The first half of the movie I found it a tad too long. Now I must admit I really needed to go to the bathroom so that might’ve clouded my judgment a little bit. But other than that this is a great movie. It’s full of memorable scenes, some memorable characters and a great plot that’s filled with cool dialogue, great tense scenes, unexpected comic relief and even some action sequences. Nothing too big though, this is Tarantino, not Michael Bay. And thank God for that!