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The first reviews of the complete KILL BILL saga

Hey folks, Harry here... KILL BILL VOL 2 is unbelievably great. In my opinion, so was VOL 1, but VOL 2 is just astonishingly more satisfying. I'm gonna get to see these back to back very soon, and I can't wait. This is gonna rock so hard! Here ya go...

Hey Harry, long time reader etc…

I just got out of a screening of Kill Bill Volumes 1 and 2 back to back, the only such screening in America to date.  I’m not sure what strings were pulled and favors called in, but that makes no difference to me because I just got out of cinema bliss.  Kill Bill Vol. 1 keeps on surprising me, and Vol. 2 blew my socks off.            

Kill Bill Volume 2 is an incredible film.  It’s funny, brutal, and in the end, touching.  The scenes between the Bride and Billadd so much depth to both characters, it’s hard to describe.  The onscreen chemistry between them really makes this film as great, which is saying a lot considering the strong performances from the supporting cast.  The fight between Elle Driver and the Bride is so devastatingly rough it made every single person in the theatre recoil in fascinated horror.  The Pei Mei training scene is hilarious and gets better with every beard tug performed by Gordon Liu.  There are so many characters that add their 2 cents into the film it’s hard to keep track of them, although there is a very, very cool cameo from an old friend.  Great.            

The fight scenes in Volume 2 seem much different than in Volume 1.  There is no grand, central fight, and when there are fights they tend to be much more gritty and real.  The real gem of this volume is the storytelling; the background of the characters are explained and fit very well into the movie as a whole.  The film clips along at a nice pace until the Bride starts to pick up on Bill’s trail.  No worries though, this slow point only lasts about 5 minutes, and leads into what I think is the best part of the film: the ending. The last twenty minutes or so are just incredible.  Here Uma shines her brightest, and the audience can see her move from student to master.  This is the best, most touching, and emotional acting of her career.  I’d say more but I don’t want to spoil it for anyone interested in this movie, which should be everyone.            

This film makes me want to talk and talk and talk about every story point, the fates of the DiVAS, the end of Bill and the future for the Bride.  But it’s late and I’d rather not ruin it for all the fans that have to wait until next Friday.  Simply put: SEE THIS MOVIE! Skip work, skip class, drop everything and run to the theatres.  My only regret about seeing this movie this early is I’m going to have to wait a week and a half to see it again.            

Well it’s late and I’ve got class early, so off to bed I go to dream of David Carradine and Uma Thurman.            

If you use this, call me the Unibomber.

And now for Mr Viking...


I just had the pleasure of seeing the first showing of both volume of Kill Bill tonight. A fundraiser for the film department of UC Santa Barbara, the screening was set up by the guy in charge of the Santa Barbara Film Festival. The crowd went nuts, and it was a great atmosphere.To say the least, it was an epic experience. Warning, there be major spoilers ahead.

Since everybody has seen the first volume already, and reviews have already hit the web regarding the second volume, I will instead post my thoughts on the entire, 4 hour + film, the way that I was lucky enough to view it.

The movie really was an epic story, and by the end I was pretty drained. Though I thought it was odd that the movie slows down to an almost crawling pace near the end, for me it worked. You can see just how masterful Taratino is with dialogue when a simple conversation can hold you enthralled, even though the first two hours were action-heavy and extremely fast. I am not a film student, nor do I profess to be an expert of film in any major way. However, from my humble experience, in movies, you tend to want to BUILD UP to a big climax. If anything, the nature of the story demanded it: the goal is to kill Bill, and damn if that doesn't imply a showdown of epic proportions.

However, in terms of action and fights, the movie blows its load with the fight with O'Ren. The rest of the movie, as most of you have heard, is dialogue. Surprisingly though, this worked wonderfully. Volume 2 was a slow-paced, but much more engaging movie. It was not shallow, which I thought the first half of the movie to be. The first volume sets up the Bride as fighting powerhouse, and she dispatches the villains that are more loosely tied to the events in El Paso. The second half, though, creates REASON for all remaining characters. Together, they complement each other perfectly; The Bride gets the big stuff out of the way, and it is now time for the more personal confrontations. The second half MAKES it a more personal story, and fixes the problems that many had with the first. Thanks to Taratino's gift with words, the film takes a breath and doesn't hurt because of it. The Bride's final conversation with Bill, for example, is LONG, but it was my favorite part.

I also would just like to say that Carradine is the MAN. This was his movie, really. Seriously, what a badass.

I have some complaints with the movie, though. First of all, I wish they had introduced Budd more into the film earlier on. I am not sure if this is a result of the film being split into two parts (I really don't know the history behind that)in order to create at least some closure at the end of Volume 1, but I thought his character was by far more interesting than the other members of the squad, excluding Bill. He just sorta shows up, and it turns out he is the most complex viper assassin dude. In my opinion, he got the shaft. Also, *HUGE SPOILERS*

The introduction of the daughter was so devoid of emotion and poorly done, I actually got pissed. I can't really explain it very well, but all of a sudden, the kid is there and The Bride doesn't really seem to be that surprised, just really happy. WE, the audience, may know that the kid is alive, but The Bride, who killed a bunch of damn people partly because of the death of her daughter, didn't. The revelation that the daughter was alive was a great twist, but the payoff for that twist was pretty weak. It SHOULD have been the emotional climax of the movie, but it just sorta happened. Booo

But really, in the grand scheme of things, these are pretty petty problems, and I urge anyone with the chance to see both volumes to do so. Rent the first one, and go see the second immediately after. It will give you a very good idea of just how much the first one, as good as it was, fooled us. A very human story, it, amazingly enough, seems to be the most real out of all of Taratino's movies.

Anyway, go see Kill Bill.

Mr. Viking.

and now - we have Space Pope's look...

Hey Harry.

I caught a Kill Bill double feature at Campbell Hall on the UC Santa Barbara campus tonight. From what the Santa Barbara Film Festival people said, it was one of few - if not the only - back-to-back screenings of Kill Bill, Volumes 1 and 2 in the country. It's too bad, too because watching the two halves together really makes the movie work.

Of course, it rocked. Every question I had from the first movie gets answered, most joyously the one about how Elle Driver lost her eye, but I think a lot of people are going to see Volume 2 when it comes out and feel kind of disappointed. The second half plays way differently than the first - different pacing, different level of violence, different characters for Uma to tangle with, the whole deal. The people I went with kept saying that it was like 'a whole different movie.' Yeah, it was, technically. Even if Quentin didn't intend for it to be in the first place, the two volumes got released separately. It was a whole different movie.

I think each of the film's chapters throughout both volumes has its own distinct feel, and excluding House of Blue Leaves, there's not a significant reduction in the amount of violence from one to the other. Sure, the chapter Elle and I (good pun) doesn't kill of 50-some Yakuza, but talk about brutal.

Anyway, the problem with the two volumes being released so far apart is that by dropping us off on a cliffhanger, Quentin left is drooling for what the second part was going to be like while we were still dazzled by the first part. Since the House of Blue Leaves was the last part we saw, that's what hung in our heads as the lingering image of what Kill Bill was all about. People that have been hyping the second half up are going to be kind of pissy when they realize that there is no House of Blue Leaves. House of Blue Leaves is the movie's violent climax, but not it's emotional climax; that falls in the volume two. The second part, while different, complements the first part perfectly by giving depth to the characters we just started to learn about in volume one (minus Vernita and O-Ren, of course, which is too bad because I would have liked to learn more about them).

A friend of mine saw volume one for the first time at tonight's show, then immediately got to see volume two. Lucky, too, because she didn't have to deal with that blue-ball inducing cliffhanger. She enjoyed the second part a lot, I think, because she also didn't have six months to build up expectations about how volume two would have to blow volume one away in terms of graphic, over-the-top violence. She just enjoyed the two parts as one continuous story full of distinct little subplots.

Those of us who did volume one can't help those built-up expectations, but I think in we keep in mind that volume two is about the characters and not just their body parts, we'll be able to appreciate it.

So that's my deal. I think everyone should be clamoring to find back-to-back double features. It totally improves the viewing experience.

Also, I noticed something about the DiVAS members. So you learn the Bride's name is Beatrix, and Elle refers to her as 'B.' So then there's an L and a B. Then there's O-Ren. She's O. And it doesn't seem like Vernita is a letter, if your remember that her pseudonym is Jeannie Bell, that makes her G. And those letters together spell 'glob.' That's right. Think about it.

Harry, you'd honor me if you call me 'The Space Pope.'

Here's the last lucky bum... so jealous, I want to see it like this right now! Here ya go...

hey harry.

i just got back from a screening for kill bill volumes 1 and 2 back-to-back, which i was told was the only one in the country so far, at UCSB. the film studies department working with someone from the sb international film festival got the prints from miramax and screened the films as a fundraiser for the department. it took place in campbell hall on the ucsb campus, fits something like 800 people, and it was, obviously packed. and it was quite awesome.

kill bill vol. 1 im sure eveyrone knows by now, its incredible. kill bill volume 2, while not as well-crafted as the first in my opinion, starts with something good and just gets better and better as time passes. the cruel tutelage of pai mei was incredible, the showdown in the trailer was just kickass, and bill was pretty much perfect, i cant imagine anyone else fitting the character that quentin wrote better than carradine. and thinking about beatty doing it is laughable to say the least.

the only problems i had with the film were that it not only was long, but it felt long. it felt excessive. im not surethe runtime was completely justified by the final product. but if im going to give anyone leniency, its tarantino. so that is a minor issue. then of course was the fact that the best scenes with bill were the ones left out of the movie! i dont know how many have read that leaked script, but some of those scenes would have been dynamite in this movie.

that being said, it was a great time at the cinema, and i cant wait to see it again april 16th.


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