Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004)
Directed by: Quentin Tarantino | 134 minutes | drama, thriller, adventure, crime | Actors: Uma Thurman, David Carradine, Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah, Samuel L. Jackson, Lucy Liu, Vivica A. Fox, Chia Hui Liu, Michael Parks, Bo Svenson, Jeannie Epper, Stephanie L. Moore, Shana Stein, Caitlin Keats Christopher Allen Nelson
After the visual arts and music, cinema is also making the definitive step towards pop art, also known as postmodernism in neat circles. Great drama is still the reference point for the established order – if we take the average of the Oscar nominations as a yardstick – but the vanguard of the film makers has long ceased to venture into linear stories with a message. Directors such as Iñárritu and Tarantino do not hold up a perfect mirror to the viewer, but shards. Not only in structure, but also in content. It is impossible to get a clear world view.
The shards are getting better, but together they do not form a complete mirror. ‘Not yet’ or ‘not anymore’, the future will tell. Western culture is fragmented and a return to the suffering Christ (‘Passion of the Christ’) should therefore be regarded as a final convulsion of the Old World rather than an ethical revival. You really can’t get Tarantino and his viewers into the church anymore.
QT takes shape with a kind of concept album for the film. An experiment, perhaps also for himself. At a slow pace – even the always witty dialogues are spoken with a heartbeat – we go on a journey through the film world – the boyhood dream – of Tarantino. Actually in the surreal docu-style of Dogma, but then widescreen with close images of the actors. The droning tempo intensifies the dramatic effect and hypnotizes for two hours.
This is a new film, where lack of self-criticism and self-editing is actually no longer a problem. The chapters are vignettes, pop songs from a double album of varying quality. Memorable pieces are certainly in it, such as the living burial of B. (Uma Thurman), the fight scene with the pregnancy test and the one with the venomous snake. The combat training with Pai Mei (Chia Hui Liu) may also be there. The filmmakers’ pleasure is bursting with joy. With Michael Madsen, Tarantino puts down Budd, a boozing desert version of ‘the dude’ (‘Big Lebowski’), which in turn was a derivative of Lance from ‘Pulp Fiction’. Cross the road with the Coen brothers.
Casting actors in the shadows can also be left to Tarantino. Carradine can be found in ‘Kill Bill: Vol. 2’ with a Clint Eastwood and Darryl Hannah seems like a nice temp for action scenes. Uma Thurman is clearly Tarantino’s muse and seems to know it all too well. She plays with the confidence of an actress who is unconditionally adored. It doesn’t matter that her dramatic talent leaves something to be desired: ‘this is pop’ and it wouldn’t work if the viewer didn’t like her.
If there is no message at all between the shards, this twentieth-century person still wants to know. Perhaps Eastern mysticism can teach the Western world something? Or would man rather kill than reproduce? It doesn’t matter because it’s movie. Film is a silicon layer on our earthly existence and not heaven. Tarantino knows that like no other. Now that one big one where everything is right.