RELEASED 2015 RUNTIME 187 MIN LANGUAGE ENGLISH DIRECTION QUENTIN TARANTINO SCREENPLAY QUENTIN TARANTINO STARRING SAMUEL L. JACKSON, KURT RUSSEL, JENNIFER JASON LEIGH, WALTON GOGGINS, DEMIAN BICHIR, TIM ROTH, MICHAEL MADSEN, BRUCE DERN, JAMES PARKS, CHANNING TATUM, ZOE BELL, LEE HORSLEY, GENE JONES MUSIC ENNIO MORRICONE
Another Tarantino Film? Please give it to me! Hard!
The Hateful 8 ist Tarantino’s 8th film and it is a true Western (not like Django Unchained, which technically is a Southern). It takes place according to Tarantino himself 6, 8 or 10 days after the Civil war in Wyoming.
John Ruth (Kurt Russel) is a bounty hunter transporting his bounty, Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh), to the town Red Rock, where she is supposed to be hanged. On his way he meets Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson), another bounty hunter who himself is on his way to bring 3 corpses as a bounty to Red Rock. A while later they discover another drifter by the name of Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins), the Sheriff of Red Rock and pick him up as well.
Because of a blizzard they have to make rest at an Inn in the middle of wilderness where they encounter another 4 dudes already resting there: Oswaldo Mobray (Tim Roth) the hangman of Red Rock, Bob the Mexican (Demian Bichir), Joe Gage (Michael Madsen) a quiet fella and General Sandord Smithers (Bruce Dern) an ex confederate general.
Now you have the Hateful 8 stuck together in a hut and trying to solve a mystery: What’s wrong about this entire situation??
STYLE & STRUCTURE
I love this film! It is very old school Tarantinoesque which means that you have a ton of fun dialogue. In fact, this movie reminded me a lot of Reservoir Dogs stuck in a Western.
So if you like Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Jacky Brown you gonna adore this movie. It is set almost entirely indoors in a small hut with 8 guys constantly at odds with each other. Nobody trusts anybody. It is so much fun. The performances are the bread and butter of the film. For some reason Tarantino has a golden touch when it comes to his actors. It’s perfect! Everybody shines in the film.
You also have the typical structure of a Tarantino Film. It is divided in 6 chapters, with each focusing on something else. It really feels like an epic play. And epic is the word I am looking for.
I watched the film in 70mm Panavision, the format you are supposed to watch the film.
In basic words, the picture is wider than the usual widescreen and only a handful of movies have been made in this format up to this day and mostly in the 50’s.
The great thing about this experience is not only the format, which captures really nice panoramic shots, but that it is being screened on real film. Means, somebody in the screening room is actually sitting there and switching reels of real film! Crazy, huh? When have you seen a movie screened on real film the last time? Probably like 20 years ago maybe?
Because of that it also has all the cracks and roughness o real film. To give you an analogy. It’s like listening to an actual record on vinyl that has been recorded on tape vs listening to a digital file recorded digitally. Call me a hipster, but I care for that shit!
Then, besides all the technical aspects you also get a musical overture before the film starts and an overture in the break before the second half of the movie starts.
You also get a program at the entrance. So all in all it makes you feel like you are watching a play. Btw. In movie terms this format of film screening is called Roadshow.
It was used for screening movies in the golden era of Hollywood in selected theaters, usually big and pompous (which the one theatre I went to also is – ZooPalast Berlin). The movies were also shown in their longer running time version to make the experience more epic. Ben Hur, Lawrence of Arabia were among those.
The Hateful 8 also comes in at almost 3 hours of runtime. I love long movies and this one especially flew by. I could have watched another hour of it and not be bored. Especially because it gets really crazy towards the end with Tarantino signature violence that is unapologetic and tons of fun!
The score by Ennio Morricone also stands out. The theme to the movie has now overtaken my Spotify. I fucking love it. It really captures the tone of the movie perfectly. In fact, if you don’t like to read about the movie, listen to the theme and you immediately know what you are in for.
Overall this movie is great. It has become my 3rd favorite Tarantino film behind Kill Bill (yes, Vol.1 and 2. are one movie, as intended by Tarantino) and Inglorious Basterds.
It is dialogue driven old school Tarantino and if you like that this movie is for you. The acting is great, the music is great, the setting and cinematography are great and the violence is perfectly Tarantino. If you don’t like this movie you don’t like Tarantino.
Also, please try to watch the movie in 70mm. It really adds to the experience! Don’t stream it. At least not for your first viewing. Come on!