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Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Writer's Life 4/30 - Eight Is Enough

I've always enjoyed Quentin Tarantino's movies. He has yet to make one that ins't, in the least, entertaining. Despite his ridiculous comments on police brutality, I choose not to privately boycott his work. I accept free speech at its worst as well as its best. If one decides to protest the liberal idiocies of Hollywood, it will take a lot of fine entertainment off the table. That said, unless a film featuring the likes of Barbra Streisand, Alec Baldwin, Rosie O'Donnell and various other know-it-alls gets raves, I will not watch. I looked forward to The Hateful Eight (2015), which I watched last night courtesy of Netflix. Set in Wyoming during a blizzard, post Civil War, it is the story of hard men in confined quarters. The pace is measured, slow, but the viewer knows a blood bath is coming. It is, after all, a Tarantino film. It is filled with his trademark, pull no punches dialogue. Profanity and the N word are used liberally. I have no problem with that, but in this instance there is a feeling of rehash. I was never bored, but neither was I completely swept up in the events as I was in Reservoir Dogs (1992) or Jackie Brown (1997). The film is appropriately titled. The characters carry enough hatred to fill a reservoir. Is there a point to it all, to the slaughter? Other than taking Americans to task for past sins, I don't see any beyond entertainment. The flick was nominated for three Oscars. The nod for Robert Richardson's cinematography was deserved. Ennio Morricone won the Academy Award for Best Score. What is remarkable about it is that there isn't a single echo of the fantastic music he provided for spaghetti westerns. at least not to my ear. Jennifer Jason Leigh, who has specialized in vile characters in her distinguished career, was a natural for the pivotal part of the woman on her way to being hanged. She was nominated for Best Supporting Actress. The rest of the cast, which features several Tinseltown veterans (Kurt Russell, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Dern, Michael Madsen, Tim Roth) performs capably. Young Channing Tatum pops up late in the proceedings. 227,000+ users at IMDb have rated The Hateful Eight, forging to a consensus of 7.9 of ten, too high in my estimation. On a scale of five, I say three. Anyone squeamish about violence or foul language should pass. The DVD version has been pared from the three-hour-plus theatrical release to about 2:45. The film did not do well at the box office, at least in the U.S., where it took in "only" 54 million on a budget of 62 million. It probably went into the black on overseas distribution and DVD sales and rentals. It might be one of those films that improves on furthering viewings. I'm hoping Tarantino, who also wrote the screenplay, comes up with something fresh next time. Perhaps it is time he filmed the work of other writers.

The floating book shop was shelved today for an impromptu family gathering.
Vic's Short Works:
Vic's 5th Novel:'s 4th novel:
Vic's 3rd Novel:
Vic's Short Story on Kindle:
Vic's Short Story Collection:
Vic's 2nd Novel: Kindle:
Vic's 1st Novel:

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