(Review originally written at 9 March 2010)

When I first heard about the original premise of "Inglourious Basterds", years ago, I got really psyched because to me it sounded like the absolute perfect movie. The way the eventual ended up was a bit different from its original first premise and the movie also certainly wasn't as great as anticipated but nevertheless it's a great original movie, that is mostly being perfectly watchable because of that.

Well yes, the movie is set in WW II but that by no means means that the movie is being a war-flick. Foremost it's being an action/drama but a very quirky one that is, with lots of humor in it. The movie is being really creative with its story and deliberately ignores history. It's a movie that deliberately pushes itself over-the-top at times, like Tarantino has done before with most of his recent movies, that are more homages to other genre movies than anything else really.

This movie can also be definitely seen as an homage to the adventurous WW II flicks, from mostly the '70's, that focus primarily on its entertainment, rather than its credibility and realism. But foremost I still see this movie more like an homage to the western. Lots of the shots within this movie fit within that genre and basically also the story could had easily been one that got set in the wild west.

I must say that out of all the Quentin Tarantino movies, this is the one with the best look over it. Tarantino movies normally really aren't the most expensive movies to make and this is easily the one with the highest budget. It definitely shows on the screen, with its more than convincing looking sets and a great overall visual stylish look. Robert Richardson's cinematography is great in this movie.

But if I have to name some of the down side of the movies, I don't need to dig hard for it. For me the entire quirkiness and fun and entertainment level could and should had been pushed a bit further. The ending made up a lot for this though. Also the overall storytelling was not something I was too pleased about. Instead of having a real main character, the movie decided to focus on several different plot-lines, with different characters involved. Because of this some of the movie its more interesting and great characters get pushed somewhat to the background. It's approach also certainly makes the movie overlong to watch but it seems that Tarantino just couldn't get enough of it himself and this was also more or less one of his dream projects, which he had worked on to get made for years.

As always is the case with a Tarantino movie, it's a very dialog-filled movie and even though the movie is lacking some of its great and powerful, tense, written monologues out of earlier Tarantino movies, it's all pretty good of course. The entire writing style makes the movie work out, even when basically everything in it is quite ridicules and far fetched. It also gives all of the actors plenty of room to do basically whatever they want. Brad Pitt is enjoyable and even Mike Myers really works out in it. People were worried when they heard that Tarantino wanted Ben Stiller to star in this but I could definitely had seen this happen in this movie. It's script is really suitable for this. But of course most praise goes to Christoph Waltz, who acts in basically four languages throughout the entire movie and is the constant great factor within the movie.

But also kudos to Tarantino's directing for this, since the movie features quite some French and German in it. It's pretty hard to direct a sequence and actors in a foreign and for you unknown language.

A movie that is mostly great to watch due to its originality but yes, it's far from Tarantino's best or most impressive or memorable movie.


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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