Posted tagged ‘Edinburgh’

Inglourious Basterds – When Tarantino met Hitler.

September 1, 2009

Inglourious_Basterd poster

I watched Tarantino’s latest wise-cracking, fast-talking, gore-filled film-fest last week at the Odeon in Edinburgh. It was eventful as you could well hope your cinema experience to be. It’s a big multiplex, as you’d expect for a capital city, but it was abandoned. A lone ticket seller/confectionery pusher/bored student stood behind the front desk to serveĀ  my friends and I.

I asked him if anyone else would be watching the film and he said “you won’t be on your own, I’ve sold atleast 4 other tickets.” The guy sold himself short, when we got into one of the biggest screens ever we had to share it with no less than 7 other people. For shame.

The most interesting of the 7 had to be the exceptionally drunk Scottish man in the front row. About 20 minutes into the film he began to shout abuse out into the dark. After a few moments it stopped and we all thought he’d just had a rant on the phone. During the scene where Col Landa (the best part of the film, the dreaded Jew Hunter) was talking to the beautiful Shosanna about whether she liked cream on her strudel he started again. This time the abuse was aimed at us in the audience.

Inglourious-Basterds girl

He was using very colourful language that I can’t repeat here. He really plunged into the depths of his vocabulary to call us every name under the sun. He left warning us that “If I ever sees any of yews again I’ll knock your bloody jaws off!” This all distracted me from what seemed to be a very good scene. Poor Shosanna was crying by the end of it.

SO the film. It was very good.

The advertising of the film is heavily bent on the Basterds. And why not? They are what will appeal to the key male demographic looking to see some good Nazi bashin’. The scenes with the Basterds in are brilliant but they don’t appear for a lot of the film. Most of the film is taken up with some of Tarantino’s best dialogue – spanning several different languages. Far from being an Indiana Jones action-adventure, Basterds shows us the side of war which is large periods of nothing happened splattered with moments of extreme violence.


The violence in this film is at an unrivaled level. When Brad Pitt’s character needs to test the truthfulness of one of his captor, his specific technique of extracting it was too much for me. I had to look away. Moving on.

One of the story strands concerns the British sending over a spy well versed in German cinema, Lt Archie Hicox. He is played by Michael Fassbender very skillfully. He must only have 10 minutes of screen time but he has some of the best one liners. His love of whisky made me feel an instant connection with him. In researching this review I found that Simon Pegg was originally cast to play him. I am very glad that he couldn’t do it in the end. Whilst Pegg gives great performances in Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead and How to Lose Friends, I don’t think he could pull off a character like this. Nothing about Simon Pegg says super spy who could coolly chat with a very sexy movie star. Serendipity strikes again.

That covers everything I have to talk about. It’s a very good film and well worth a watch if you are a Taranito fan. I’m a bit of a QTphile so the film quickly rushed over me. My friends enjoyed it too. One thought it was a great film, if a little bloated. The other was confused as to why the Basterds had bombs on them, blaming his confusion on going to the toilet almost an hour earlier. The greatest reaction I heard to this film was when me friend went to see it with a girl on a date. As they were leaving the theatre she said, “I really liked. Was it a true story?” Some people.

Confidently doing breast stroke. Gets its 200m award with no trouble.


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