Knee-jerk review: "Inglorious Basterds"

1. Audacious.
2. We're not sure, but this may be something of a minor masterpiece. Pulp Fiction remains the gold standard for QT, of course. But this could be a close second. In case you're wondering, Kill Bill loses points because Volume 2 isn't as sleek and steely as Volume 1.
3. Some critics have called Brad Pitt's performance as a hillbilly solider lazy or one-note. We don't understand these people. He's great.
4. There really aren't many writers out there who can write dialogue like Tarantino. It seems so easy, doesn't it? Trust us, it ain't.
5. It would be easy to dismiss the whole thing as pop culture regurgitation, a self-conscious blending of cheesy B-movie genres. That all may be true, but this is also a movie with layers and subtext. Complex questions about cinema, about war, about language, about nationalism, about racism.
6. Christoph Waltz? Genius. Look for him as a Best Actor nominee. He walks away with the whole movie. And he knows it.
7. We probably could have done without the Mike Myers cameo.
8. Who knew that Germans gestured numbers with their hands differently than Americans and Brits?
9. The baseball bat scene is incredibly brutal. We had to close our eyes a little. Worse than the ear cutting scene in Reservoir Dogs by about a factor of 20.
10. There are pregnant pauses in movies. And then... there are... Tarantino's... pregnant... pauses. We appreciate the ratcheting up of tension as Wait for Something Bad to Happen, but sometimes he can takes things too far.
11. Poor Max's father.
12. "And I want my scalps."
13. Melanie Laurent, where have you been all this time?
14. The ending has to be seen to be believed. And even then you may not believe it.
15. Good stuff.

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