Ethan Switch - Tuesday, 21 October 2003
Lone Cub and Wolf and about a couple of other forgotten films are all the samurai fare I've had to date and if pumping jets of blood covering the walls and ceilings were anything to go by, Kill Bill wouldn't disappoint in that respect. There was also talk of spaghetti western influence thrown in for good measure. Not sure what exactly constitutes a spaghetti western although the use of extreme close ups featuring nothing more than the expressions of the eyes seems to be key.
Julie Dreyfus, who plays a wonderful Sophie Fatale, starts looking a lot like Monica Bellucci half way through the film. Probably because she doesn't appear until half the film is already done with. But then all these comparisons aren't fore thoughts, just a mad mind driving blindly through the sand looking for the bottled ship when actually it should be paying attention to the nightmares of waking up on the fender of a truck going down the highway with a driver who's forgotten to take their no-doze pills.
Trouble from the back presented itself in the form of a laser pointer. Ones that kids think cool in the darkness of movie theatres and lecturers think doubly cool in the light of their caffeine afflicted hands. Only two appearances were made before a swift Colorado heel to the back of the troubled stranger's head solved that problem and the crowd watched on. Seats were stumbled over back down toward the dead centre of the theatre as the massive clang of many duelling swords set in. With at least three rows of unbuffered empty seats, the ear drums took a heavy beating and had blood trickled from the canals, it would have been a most satisfying fourth dimensional film. Yet, even without the blood it was a gloriously fought battle between those in for the first and those out in the second.
The R rating of Kill Bill whittled down a lot of what audience there would be on a weekday matinee showing but as always, the high schoolers found representation. In all, ten people filled the thousand strong seats of the cinema. ID was shown but only after the purchase and collection of the tickets. Eyes Wide Shut almost took out the honour of being my first cinema R rater, but comicbooks were to be read and a naked Nicole Kidman dancing in front of a mirror wasn't enough to tear away focus. The Exorcist, with an audience of mobile junkie gigglers and highly coked teenagers eclipsed Kill Bill in that R rated honour.
The opening ushers the featured presentation as "The 4th film by Quentin Tarantino" a tag I thought only existed in hype and synopses over the Internet, magazines and other media. But no, there it was in stark black and white, well, more white on black to be precise, in case I'd forgotten what I'd paid my money for. It isn't my money any way, someone else worked for it and all I do is collect it every now and then. If that isn't communism by proxy then it's welfare for the masses.
Black and white nicely screens the action in the massive melee between O-Ren Ishii's (Lucy Liu) Crazy 88's and The Bride/Black Mumba (Uma Thurman). No CGI and no colour. You could see the amount of effort they put into the timing and sword practice. Had there been colour perhaps it would have been extremely comical in a way that would detract from the sheer scale and complexity presented. That or it might have been to comment on society's nonchalant attitude toward violence. But such talk is a matter best suited to the debate over the use of entropy over atrophy.