Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill – The Whole Bloody Affair is about The Bride (Uma Thurman) who wakes after a four year coma. She remembers the massacre at her wedding rehearsal orchestrated by her former flame and boss Bill (David Carradine) which lead to the death of her to-be-husband, friends and the baby in her own womb. Revenge is on The Bride’s mind and she sets out with a Hattori Hanzo sword to make use of the rigorous training given to her by Pai Mei (Gordon Liu). The Bride travels all over the world to kill all the five members of The Deadly Viper Assassination Squad who attacked her at the wedding rehearsal and eventually – to Kill Bill.
It is so much fun describing the plot. Imagine what would have been the fun writing it ! If any of you actually read scripts of movies, just read Tarantino scripts. It feels as if you are reading a Dan Brown novel. It is a complete page turner. Such is Kill Bill. It is an appeasing repertoire for martial arts movie fans, drama movie fans, or just people who love movies. You may wonder why I am reviewing the whole series than Kill Bill – Volume 2 since I did review Kill Bill – Volume 1 solo. The thing is that I recently pondered over that review and found it to be extremely badly written. I don’t blame myself for this, because Kill Bill – Volume 1 doesn’t have a story, it is one literally bloody entertaining scenario which paves the path for another entertaining scenario. Even look at Ebert’s review, he hasn’t actually talked much about the movie, but has elaborated on the references.
But this is the film that proves Tarantino as a great film-maker. At first, the second half of Kill Bill was disappointing. After the first half, which had set me on the mood for another two hours of illogical, darkly-comic and wildly entertaining violence. But what I got was …….. melodrama. Tarantino experimented with something he had never done before. It was a huge risk considering the pulse set by the first half. But he came, he saw and he conquered.
I think the first half is what made the movie a Tarantino movie, the second half is what made the movie a great movie. At the beginning of the movie, just before Bill puts a bullet through The Bride’s head, he asks, “Do you find me sadistic ? This is me at my most masochistic.” That is the perception we have initially about the story. We are led astray in world of blood, and what we make out form the plot-less first half is that sometime before, The Bride was employed by Bill, with who she ended up doing the dance without her pants, but you just can’t trust those rubbers, can you ? She got pregnant. And she left the job to look after her baby and Bill turned out to be a cold-blooded killer who killed his child and girl without giving a second thought. But, the second half made me sympathize with Bill. He was desperate. The girl he had so closely clung onto had apparently left him as if he was just a one-night stand for her at a nightclub in Taiwan. He wanted vengeance as well. Revenge is one her mind, but it was one his mind as well. He wanted to settle the scores as well. It was the first time Bill had fell for a lady, and she just dumped him after showering with love and affection. It was unbearable for Bill.
The first half has the power to stand on its own, the second half lacks it. But, the first half can stand on its own but will be on the same line as Vin Diesel movies, but second half completes it. Second half is much about the psychological tension between the characters. The troubled relationship with Bill and Budd, Bill and Bride, the rivalry between Elle and Bride and so on. It is a stupendous closing for a great story.
Tarantino’s references to other movies is well apparent in his movies. He is paying homage to hundreds of movies in a single of his. That is why I think the energy channelled into each of his movie is so inordinate that each of his movie feels like a film festival of its own. Tarantino manipulates the audience. He makes us laugh at the bloodiest scenes, and think at conversations about goldfishes. The dialogue itself works as an audio-book of its own. Beautifully written, with constant references to movies and also a touch of formality. The panache in them is unforgettable. But, the first half leaves us with a perception that the second half is going to be an explosion on the scale of Krakatoa eruption. But the climax is something heartfelt, rather than an epic fight on the mountains against the rising sun.
Emotionally tense, vibrant, darkly-comic and entertaining, Kill Bill – The Whole Bloody Affair is and always remain a standing testament to the sheer genius of Quentin Tarantino.
Rating : 9.4 / 10
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