Saturday, January 2, 2010
Inglorious Basterds -Letter to Quentin Tarantino
Bravo Quentin Tarantino!!
Thank you for taking your extremely quirky writing/directing hat off to wear a more mainstream fitting one. You are still responsible for putting in a few clips in the movie that reflect your uber-violent side just so everyone knows that you are the writer/director, but it is obvious to all that you really held back on the gory style that is you...
I want to start by the commenting on your writing! It was without a doubt, your best since Pulp Fiction. Your dialogue and character development, most especially with "The Jew Hunter" were superb. You are the master at the art of creating useless dialogue in a movie that holds and intrigues the viewer. We know that you are going somewhere with it while it is going on, but we're not quite clear until your characters finish their closing monologues where they are going with their rants. -Only you can do this as well as you do…
I love the fact that you paid for the full use of Brad Pitt in your movie, but only used him in a limited, but all together fitting role. Most directors would try to fill the screen with himto get their money’s worth, but you allowed your story to remain true to the other characters, who were just as interesting. Your characters in this movie were well balanced, and they complimented each other in a supporting role. The performances by the actors who brought your characters to life were nothing short of incredible, and I think your film should sit worthy of Oscar nominations. The fact that most of your cast were foreign actors who all spoke many languages was very reflective of Europeans, and unlike us North Americans who can only speak one language, the movie took better turns because of this language element.
The fact that most of the movie was in subtitles was a daring but brilliant ploy on your behalf. A less talented Director would've found a way to avoid this, knowing that Americans hate subtitles in their movies. I will admit that the colouring of the subtitles contrasted the colours on the screen, making it very difficult to read sometimes, AND that your warped brain must read at light speed sometimes to keep up with the subtitles, but overall, it worked well.
I want to get back to the writing on this however. Although I applaud you for your brilliant use of dialogue and story telling, I have to question how it is that you can come to write these things? One would argue that when you are watching the opening scene where The Jew Hunter is comparing a Jew to a rat and the inhumane qualities they possess in his mind, that you are stepping really close to being anti-Semitic. One would find it very odd if a Jew were to write this scene, seeing that it reflects very negative but standard views of the Nazi SS soldier during WW2. Alternatively, it doesn't leave much room for acquittal when a non-Jew could write something so offensive. The fact that it is so offensive is testament to your brilliant writing and flair for dialogue. -But still there is a part of me that must question, "where the hell do you come up with this" in my head.
There are many other attributes of your new baby that I must commend. The storyline is classic Tarantino, and it is your bread and butter, so no need to go there; seeing that it was nothing short of great. Your character development in minor roles really played out well, and they came back to add much more intensity towards the end of the film. (I could go into this in greater detail, but I do not want to give away any of the movie to those who haven't seen it.) The view that you have taken a fictitious view of events in WW2 that could've come to pass, allowed for more leeway in historical inaccuracies and storyline additions, so that seemed to work in your favour as well.
I will admit that I had to watch this movie twice to fully put everything together, but then again, I usually need a couple viewings of a movie as broad as this one. I'm also a big history buff, so I could appreciate the historical references and details that you threw in there for good measure, but I would imagine that the average person would not notice them. But then again, attention to detail is key in your business, and it warrants that.
I will even say that the ending pleased me. Usually, I feel let down that a director goes the whole distance with the entire movie, only to compromise at the finale. You stayed true to your characters, and what you thought they might do, despite accountability. This made your characters truly take on a life of their own, and it was the difference from a character being great on paper as opposed to coming to being loved or hated on the screen.
So overall, I would say that your form was great. Your back was slightly arched on the dismount, but you certainly stuck the landing. -I will give it a 9.5
I hope this settles our previous disagreements with some of your previous attempts in the film category (we're keeping your personal life out of this for the moment) I hope to be able to see many more films like this from you Quentin, and I applaud your patience and hard work on Inglorious Basterds. It was well done!!
Your kissing ass wanna be friend,