Author Topic: The Hateful Eight  (Read 6067 times)

jmbossy

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The Hateful Eight
« on: December 30, 2015, 04:48:04 PM »
First off, there are 9 strangers in this movie. I guess no one cares about O.B. And that's not even counting the entirely present Channing Tatum.

So about this movie... My movie friend and I went and watched it in 70mm, overture, intermission and all. I'm still working through how I feel about it, but suffice to say it isn't my favourite, or even a very good Tarantino movie. More than anything I felt a suspicious absence of Tarantino's signature dialogue. Sure, this movie is unmistakably his verve and humour, but the dialogue lacked a certain agility I minimally expect from Tarantino. In every other film I've seen of his, half of the fun of the movie is digesting those exceptionally witty lines read by scene chewing actors. Even with some of his more apt collaborators on board, there was a feeling of reservation in their deliveries (though, not in the direction or the cathartic violence, which are as joyously absurd as ever). The actors who stood out to me were Roth and Goggins (especially Goggins). Though the actors could only do their best with the script, which I just felt lacked the imaginatively vivid Tarantino signature.

Then there is that flashback and all of the narrative it exposes, which begs some significant consideration of the film's second third (the cabin stuff pre-tatum). The plan seems convoluted, and was executed about as poorly as it could have been. Everything that happened from the Nutshot on (until the hanging sequence) felt completely artificial and mechanical, which is strange considering the whole movie should have been setting up the mechanics of a glorious final showdown. Why would Tatum shoot Jackson from beneath the floorboard at that moment, and why would he not continue to shoot until he (Jackson) stopped screaming? Instead he pops his head out of the cellar like a gopher oblivious to the fully loaded shotgun behind him. Why did Goggins have to faint? I get he was delirious because of bloodloss or whatever, but that happened without notice, and seemingly just so Leigh could machete off Russel's forearm and create 2 extra minutes of tension...

Whatever, I digress; there are a lot of plot issues in my opinion. That's not so significant. I guess what I want to ask is, given his clear love for capital C cinema, what about this movie was worth the class Tarantino invested into it? For someone who sought out an Ennio Morricone score, who insisted his beautifully photographed movie be shown with an overture and intermission in 70mm film, what part of Hateful Eight is remotely concerned with the point those mechanics deliver? Isn't this, like, the definition of a gimmick? Using a tool because other people used it well, without understanding why that tool was necessary? I have a whole lot of respect for Tarantino as a difficult and actually important artist to modern film, but this entire movie feels like someone was trying to parody Tarantino's style, without understanding what made his past movies so effective. We'll hire Sam Jackson, Tim Roth and a bunch of older actors, shoot them on expensive film, have them monologue about blowjobs and say the N word a bunch, and then have them all violently kill each other off. Because that's why Tarantino is so successful, right?

Bondo

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2015, 05:53:57 PM »
O.B. can be excluded because he isn't hateful, but that doesn't explain Tatum's absence from the count. Nine didn't rhyme I guess.

Alongside the flashback, I didn't need a visual depiction of Jackson's story.

Melvil

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2015, 12:42:34 AM »
Probably the best example of this is the penultimate chapter of the film, told as a flashback. A less indulgent, more confident storyteller wouldn't need this chapter at all. That storyteller would let a blood stain in the present speak for itself.

I can't agree enough. This is the type of indulgent reveling in the grotesque that has ruined Tarantino's last few movies for me. It's especially a shame here, because it is already so effective without seeing it, and there's really nothing gained by laying it all out for us. The violence also becomes dulled by over-use, robbing the climactic sequences of impact.

Overall I did like the movie, I think perhaps more than his last two at least, but I'm still waiting for another home-run, or at least something that doesn't make the word "indulgent" show up in every single review of it.

1SO

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2016, 12:39:47 AM »
Seems to me that every Tarantino film ends with more of the main cast dead than alive.

Got into a discussion afterwards about that flashback and the way the film build suspense. What I liked is that the opening credits say "and Channing Tatum." So he becomes the bomb under the table. Every now and then I would remember and go "where's Channing Tatum." For a time I thought he was the son in Sam Jackson's flashback. (Imagine if that was true.) I also thought maybe this was a Tarantino fake-out since we know Channing Tatum can't possibly be in this movie. Then comes his introduction, which is the big surprise of the film. I thought this aspect was well-played.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2016, 12:43:41 AM by 1SO »
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Bondo

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2016, 12:59:03 AM »
Every now and then I would remember and go "where's Channing Tatum." For a time I thought he was the son in Sam Jackson's flashback. (Imagine if that was true.)

Haha, I thought that too and was like "how was this not being talked about online...think of the female audience this film is missing out on." But then the other character is clearly him and I was like, oh, nevermind.

1SO

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2016, 01:40:44 PM »
First off, there are 9 strangers in this movie. I guess no one cares about O.B. And that's not even counting the entirely present Channing Tatum.

Looked through my 70mm Roadshow Program and found the Eight listed.
1. The Bounty Hunter
2. The Hangman - Russell, not Roth
3. The Prisoner
4. The Sheriff
5. The Mexican
6. The Little Man - Roth, even though he is the real Hangman
7. The Cow Puncher
8. The Confederate

So O.B. is not Hateful. As for Channing Tatum, I would also classify him as hateful, but the only mention of his existence is a small photo in the middle of the centerfold spread.


This kind of playing with the numbers is similar to what Martin McDonagh did with Seven Psychopaths.
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Junior

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2016, 02:00:04 AM »
For all of the talking, I think this is more of a character movie than a plot movie. Though it is fun to follow the crazy machinations, it's infinitely more fun and more rewarding to trace the characters through their various personal twists and turns. Walton Goggins, especially, is a delight and changes dramatically over the course of the film. He's so damn good.
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1SO

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2016, 02:09:02 AM »
I've been thinking most about John Ruth, who on the surface is your good bounty hunter who brings people in alive instead of dead, which Major Warren points out is much easier and pays the same. We see how he treats Daisy, but she's such a wild savage that maybe she deserves it. The more time you spend with Ruth, the more he comes off as a sadist who enjoys the time he gets to spend physically abusing his prisoner along the journey. He sets himself above the rest while being the most barbaric.

Goggins is good, but he doesn't grab your attention like many of the others. I thought Tim Roth was at his best in a long time. Demián Bichir was the weak link for me, sometimes hitting the "stinkin' badges" accent too hard.
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Corndog

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2016, 09:55:55 AM »
Did anyone else get the sense from Roth's performance that Tarantino really wrote that role for Christoph Waltz?
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Bondo

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Re: The Hateful Eight
« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2016, 10:38:27 AM »
Very much so. It is officially the new stock "overly verbose and delighted about it" character.