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When Quentin Tarantino played an Elvis Impersonator on ‘The Golden Girls’

In 1988, before Quentin Tarantino had sold his scripts for True Romance or Natural Born Killers, leading the way to secure a deal to direct his first film Reservoir Dogs, he appeared for a few seconds as an Elvis impersonator at Sophia’s wedding in an episode of The Golden Girls.

Tarantino discussed the appearance in a 1994 Playboy interview:

“Well, it was kind of a high point because it was one of the few times that I actually got hired for a job. I was one of 12 Elvis impersonators, really just a glorified extra. For some reason they had us sing Don Ho’s ‘Hawaiian Love Chant.’ All the other Elvis impersonators wore Vegas-style jumpsuits. But I wore my own clothes, because I was, like, the Sun Records Elvis. I was the hillbilly cat Elvis. I was the real Elvis; everyone else was Elvis after he sold out.”

Indeed, Tarantino’s Elvis look doesn’t seem too far off from the look he sports in his 1987 unfinished directorial debut, My Best Friend’s Birthday, in which a character he plays in the film seems obsessed with Elvis (a theme that would carry on through other films in Tarantino’s body of work).

See QT in action as Elvis after the jump…

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Behind the scenes shots from the bloody set of ‘Reservoir Dogs’
09:09 am


Quentin Tarantino
Reservoir Dogs

Tim Roth (Mr. Orange) and Michael Madsen (Mr. Blonde) clowning around during the shooting of the 1992 film, ‘Reservoir Dogs.’
Twenty-five years ago a 29-year-old Quentin Tarantino gave us all the gift of the blood-splattered bank robbery film gone wrong, Reservoir Dogs. Inspired by a number of Tarantino’s favorite films such as The Pope of Greenwich Village, The Taking of Pelham 123 and Stanley Kubrick’s audacious 1956 flick, The Killing, before shooting began Tarantino got a call from the Sundance Institute asking him to attend a filmmaker-centric workshop that solicited feedback on their concepts and techniques from people already deeply immersed in the film industry. 

The first group that was exposed to Tarantino’s filming technique skewered the director regarding his skills as a cameraman. However, the second group that got a peek into the future mad scientist of filmmaking included Terry Gilliam—an obviously unconventional filmmaker in his own right. Gilliam clearly saw Tarantino’s potential and became an instant fan. So if you’ve ever wondered why Terry Gilliam’s name appears in the credits under the “special thanks” category, now you know. Also, if the scenes that were shot inside of the warehouse—which was actually once a mortuary—look authentically uncomfortable, there’s also a simple explanation for that as well. The film was shot in Los Angeles during its warmer months, which in turn helped pushed the inside temperature of the mortuary turned warehouse to 100 degrees at times. Because of this while poor Mr. Orange was lying around in an ever-expanding puddle of his own fake movie blood, he would occasionally find himself attached to the floor thanks to the faux blood’s reaction to heat.

I could quite honestly fill an entire post based solely on the mythological backstory concerning this film but as I’m sure it is a favorite of our readers, I won’t go into more detail. What I will do is share with you loads of shots from the set as well as other candid images connected with the film that I really dug digging up for you. I’ve also included footage of Tarantino and Buscemi rehearsing scenes for the film together that you should watch right away before it gets pulled. And since this is Reservoir Dogs we’re talking about, some of what follows is NSFW. Much like Mr. Tarantino himself.

Quentin Tarantino, Steve Buscemi (Mr. Pink), and Harvey Keitel (Mr. White) on the set of ‘Reservoir Dogs.’

Tarantino at the LA premiere of ‘Reservoir Dogs’ in 1992.
More after the jump…

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Bizarre Japanese TV commercial for dog-shaped speakers starring Quentin Tarantino
01:03 pm


Quentin Tarantino

Americans have long found Japanese advertisements peculiar—the “Mr. Sparkle” commercial parody from The Simpsons (“I am disrespectful to dirt!”) is certainly an excellent representation of why we regard them as so strange.

In this 2009 commercial for a Japanese telecom named SoftBank, renowned director and would-be actor Quentin Tarantino makes his best pitch at being the Mickey Rooney of his generation (watch Breakfast at Tiffany’s if you don’t get that reference) when he dons a kimono, waves his hands around martial arts-style, and says a few words in Japanese.

The product in the commercial is a cell phone speaker shaped like a dog, which is SoftBank’s mascot. The dog is actually the patriarch of the family featured in SoftBank’s commercials. They are known as “the White Family,” and as David Griner observes, the family consists of “the most popular recurring commercial characters in Japan” in which “the father is a human in a dog’s body ... the son is a black American, and their maid is an alien incarnation of Tommy Lee Jones.” Hooo-kay! But then again, try summarizing any Geico commercial and you end up in Weird Town pretty fast.

See it for yourself, after the jump…

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What if Quentin Tarantino’s movies actually were pulp fiction?
10:56 am


Quentin Tarantino

It’s not news that Quentin Tarantino is a lover of hard-boiled crime fiction. His most successful movie is, of course, even called Pulp Fiction, which memorably featured a character (John Travolta’s Vincent Vega) who liked to read the first installment of Peter O’Donnell’s Modesty Blaise series while using the toilet.

Tarantino’s follow-up to Pulp Fiction, 1997’s excellent Jackie Brown, was based on Elmore Leonard’s 1992 novel Rum Punch. Tarantino threw in a shot of Robert Forster’s Max Cherry reading Len Deighton’s spy thriller Berlin Game while waiting for Jackie to be released from prison.

And Tarantino’s interest in Leonard doesn’t stop there: it’s been rumored that Tarantino has shown an interest in adapting the crime fiction master’s 1972 western 40 Lashes Less One—but considering that Tarantino’s last two movies were westerns, that didn’t seem too likely, but Tarantino brought it up again as recently as last December—it seems he might want to do it as a TV series.

Tarantino’s strengths as a filmmaker track those of the dime-store fiction category, so a French art director named David Redon had the bright idea to concoct a bunch of paperback covers for each of Tarantino’s movies. The quality is a bit variable (the Pulp Fiction one isn’t good, and come on, you have to misspell INGLOURIOUS the right way!), but I like most of ‘em just fine.

The iconic poster for Pulp Fiction actually is a dog-eared paperback cover, so this makes sense on a number of fronts.



More after the jump…....

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette to do ‘True Romance’ live reading together

For several years now, director Jason Reitman has been delighting audiences with his “Live Read” series in which a group of well-known actors convenes at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) to execute a reading of a well-chosen Hollywood classic movie. Past events have tackled Bull Durham, Boogie Nights, The Apartment, Goodfellas, and so on.

On the occasion of a 2011 Live Read of The Breakfast Club, Reitman commented that the purpose of the readings was to show audiences how actors arrive at their characters: “It’s exciting to see a role developed from start to finish.” So it’s especially interesting when Reitman lures to his events the actors who originated key roles, as has happened a few times. Sam Elliot participated in a March 2012 Live Read of The Big Lebowski, while Fred Savage and Cary Elwes took part in separate readings of The Princess Bride.

For the Live Read to take place on December 16, Reitman secured commitments from Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette to play Clarence Worley and Alabama Whitman in True Romance, which was directed for release in 1993 by Tony Scott from a screenplay by Quentin Tarantino. The rest of the sprawling cast, which included Gary Oldman, Brad Pitt, James Gandolfini, Christopher Walken and Dennis Hopper for the movie, has not been announced. According to Reitman, the two actors had the same reaction when offered the gig:  “Both said yes, but both wanted to make sure the other was in. It was very sweet. One didn’t want to do it without the other.”

Both Arquette and Slater have enjoyed critical recognition recently. Arquette is the most recent winner of the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her work in Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, while this week Slater received a Golden Globe nomination for “Supporting actor in a TV series, limited series or TV movie” in recognition of the first season of the TV series Mr. Robot.

In February 2012 Reitman assembled an all-black cast to take on Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs, while a year later, a cast of women essayed David Mamet’s manly masterpiece Glengarry Glen Ross. In early 2013 I spent a few weeks in Los Angeles, and I actually attended that Glengarry Glen Ross event, which was hugely enjoyable. The full cast was Carla Gugino, Robin Wright, Catherine O’Hara, Maria Bello, Melanie Lynskey, and Mae Whitman.

Fans who are looking forward to audio or video of the event may be disappointed, as the spectators are urged not to record the proceedings to honor the actors’ willingness to undertake an unrehearsed reading in public, while no official recording is made for rights reasons.
Here’s Gary Oldman playing the ultimate wigga Drexl in an early scene from True Romance:

via Consequence of Sound

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Alternate universe ‘Pulp Fictions’: Who else did Quentin Tarantino consider for these iconic roles?

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Alternate universe ‘Pulp Fictions’: Who else did Quentin Tarantino consider for these iconic roles?
11:29 am


Pulp Fiction
Quentin Tarantino

Casting in movies or TV is a difficult job for the ordinary viewer to get his or her head around, because the tendency to regard the finished performance as “the only way” it could have been done is so powerful, and this is true even for quite ordinary movies. When it comes to a movie as iconic as Pulp Fiction, however, it’s almost impossible to think of Vincent Vega as anybody other than John Travolta, and likewise for Jules Winnfield and Samuel L. Jackson (indeed, both actors were nominated for the Academy Award for their work in Pulp Fiction).

But such things are always more flexible than they appear, and it’s the job of casting directors to try to guess what the combination of this actor and that role is likely to produce. Yesterday there appeared on reddit an intriguing document that apparently represents Quentin Tarantino’s “wish list” for Pulp Fiction, which was to be his second feature after his successful 1992 debut, Reservoir Dogs. The list naturally contains some expected choices—including the actors that were eventually cast—but also some surprises.

On Reservoir Dogs Tarantino worked with Michael Madsen, Harvey Keitel, and Tim Roth, and it’s not super surprising that all three of those actors were Tarantino’s choice for the roles of Vincent, the Wolf, and Pumpkin, respectively—Keitel and Roth, of course, did end up playing those roles. For Vincent, Tarantino wanted Madsen for the part but effectively considered Travolta to be a co-front-runner for the role. Tarantino’s list reads as follows: “Wrote part for Michael. ... John Travolta (strong, strong, strong second choice).” It turned out that Madsen was committed to Lawrence Kasdan’s Wyatt Earp starring Kevin Costner, which freed up Travolta for his career-altering turn as Vincent. 

(click for a larger view)
The application of image filters on the page reveals some hidden text behind the page, specifically:

Harvey Keitel***
Wrote part for Harvey, if unavailable other possibilities:
Warren Beatty


The main image on reddit, which covered the casting of Pumpkin and Honey Bunny, Vincent, and drug dealer Lance and his wife Jody, did not include the key roles of Mia Wallace, Marsellus Wallace, the Wolf, and Butch and his girlfriend Fabienne. In the comments on the same page on reddit, however, is a four-page fax dated July 14, 1993 (faxing a document apparently typed up on July 2, 1993), which included Tarantino’s cast list for those parts as well as others. Surprisingly, an actor who played a career-defining role in Pulp Fiction and is well known as one of Tarantino’s very favorites, Uma Thurman, was not on the director’s original list for Mia. Rather, Tarantino wanted Virginia Madsen (Michael’s younger sister), with Marisa Tomei, Patricia Arquette, and Bridget Fonda also mentioned—Thurman’s name is nowhere to be found.

Similarly, Bruce Willis was not on Tarantino’s mind for the role of Butch: Matt Dillon was Tarantino’s first choice, with Sean Penn, “Nick” Cage, and Johnny Depp on the list as well. Depp, who filmed Ed Wood around the same time as Pulp Fiction was filmed, was Tarantino’s second choice for Lance, the drug dealer played by Eric Stoltz.

Samuel L. Jackson was not Tarantino’s first choice for Jules Winnfield—Laurence Fishburne was. Tarantino sprinkled Jackson’s name all over the document, considering him as possible for Marsellus, Captain Koons, the Wolf, and Lance. For Vincent, the Wolf, and Captain Koons, Tarantino let his imagination run wild, with some big-ticket casting ideas. Tarantino threw out the names Alec Baldwin, Michael Keaton, Denzel Washington, and Sean Penn, while for Capt. Koons, Tarantino considered Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Tommy Lee Jones.

It’s awfully fun to imagine a version of Pulp Fiction with Denzel Washington as Vincent, Eddie Murphy as Jules, Johnny Depp as Butch, Danny DeVito as the Wolf, Marisa Tomei as Mia, Michael Keaton as Lance, Pam Grier as Jody, and Robert De Niro as Capt. Koons. One wonders if such a movie would ever have gotten nominated for seven Oscars…...





Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
If Quentin Tarantino directed ‘Ghostbusters 3’

This could be a highly watchable cinematic mash-up of blood, guts and spooky goings-on: Quentin Tarantino directs Ghostbusters 3, as imagined by claymation wizard Lee Hardcastle.

Via Popbitch

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Quentin Tarantino, Jim Jarmusch, Martin Scorsese and Tim Robbins discuss Samuel Fuller

Ah, Samuel Fuller. The great director, on some levels, exists in his very own category, creatively hitting up in the Kubrick/Kurosawa/Bergman leagues and yet hardly most people outside of serious film geeks have ever heard of him.

Arguably, Fuller has been largely ignored historically because, even in the 50s and early 60s he was cranking up the intensity to levels that simply could not be tolerated by most cinema-goers or even movie critics. Confronted with Fuller’s incendiary vision, American society collectively slapped their hands over their ears and repeated, No, this can’t be the way things are. But they were that way, and Fuller presented it in such a way that you couldn’t deny it. Forget about mom, apple pie and the postwar American dream, Samuel Fuller’s films metaphorically lifted Marilyn Monroe’s skirt to reveal a maniacally grinning demon underneath.

For instance, here’s white supremacist Trent from Shock Corridor, and remember this came out in 1962:

See what I mean? If you’ve never experienced that scene before, right now you’re probably saying, “Holy Shit…”

Sam Fuller was a classic cigar-chomping old school man’s man who’d been a crime reporter in the 1930s and then shipped off to World War II. He fought on the beaches of North Africa, Sicily and Normandy before helping to liberate the concentration camp at Falkenau, where shot some of his earliest film footage.

By the time he made his first movie in 1949 at the age of 37, Fuller was already loaded for bear with levels of life experience most of us would never even wish for. His films combined newspaper sensationalism sprinkled with bits and pieces from his own life. Although not nihilistic, Fuller didn’t have heroes or villains in the classic sense but populated his films with real characters with good and bad all mixed together. You know, like in real life.

Like any artist or writer or, well THINKER worth a damn, you can’t easily pigeonhole his world view. In Sam Fuller, The Typewriter, the Rifle and the Movie Camera, a documentary about Fuller’s life, Jim Jarmusch describes the iconoclastic director as an “anti-totalitarian anarchist,” though Fuller took heat from both the right and left for Pickup on South Street (which was accused of “Red baiting” and anti-Americanism at the same time!). In the film you can also see Fuller describe both the fascists and mid-20th century communist regimes as “Enemies of humanity.”

Like Luis Buñuel,  Fuller got kicked to the curb for a number or years for just going too damn far, with the controversial White Dog—which never did see a US release—about a dog trained to hate black people [A neighbor of mine in Brooklyn had a doberman that hated black people, so this isn’t as far-fetched as you might think], whereupon he moved to France, where he was, of course, hailed as a genius, and finished out the rest of his creative career.

Here’s the entire film about Fuller, shot during his lifetime so that there are plenty of classic quotes from the man. Just as amusing are the shots of Quentin Tarantino and Tim Robbins rooting around in Fuller’s pre-France work-space, uncovering all sorts of Fuller’s old treasures, even as they imitate him and invoke his spirit at a distance:

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Quentin Tarantino’s father really really sucks as an actor
12:46 am


Quentin Tarantino
Tony Tarantino

There’s no love lost between Quentin Tarantino and his father Tony. In fact, it’s probably fair to say that Quentin pretty much loathes his dad. The elder Tarantino abandoned his son and his son’s mother when Quentin was still in his mama’s belly. Tony apparently wasn’t the domestic type.

As is often the case, the estranged father started to express an interest in his son when Quentin started making money. The color of green stirred up Tony’s paternalistic impulses. He started to morph into Mike Brady, if Mike Brady had been played by Tony Montana. But all attempts at bonding with his son were spurned. The one time he actually confronted Quentin in person, he was told to get lost. He left, but he didn’t get lost.

Well, I never knew my father. That’s the thing. I never knew him. He wanted to be an actor. Now he’s an actor only because he has my last name. But he was never part of my life. I didn’t know him.” Quentin Tarantino

Nothing has stopped Tony, least of all shame, from trying to cash in on the Tarantino name. He claims to be an actor and a director, but based on this clip from the movie Blood Money, which he co-directed and stars in, the talent gene seems to have bypassed him and gone directly to his son. Though, I must admit, Tony’s right index finger shows some promise.

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Quentin Unchained: Should Tarantino answer questions about movie violence?
06:16 pm


Quentin Tarantino

Fan art by Daz Tiibles, via downwithfilm
Quentin Tarantino is not your slave and you are not his master.

That’s what he told newscaster Krishnan Guru Murthy on the UK’s Channel 4 News today, in a tense and very awkward interview.

In response to questions about violence in movies, and in particular whether people who enjoy violence in movies also enjoy violence in real life, the director stated that he is not Murthy’s monkey and that he can’t be made to dance to that particular tune.

To be fair, he kinda has a point, as this line of questioning always comes up in his interviews. Then again, as horrific acts of violence erupt more often in public, and as Tarantino keeps releasing mass-marketed films containing horrific violence, aren’t these questions more relevant than ever?

I was actually expecting this interview to be worse, a potential storm-out situation (maybe it’s Murthy’s ever-so-level-headed British demeanour that keeps it together, or maybe I had too many expectations after Piers Morgan and Alex Jones), but as Quentin gleefully points out, the broadcasters are looking for any kind of controversy that will bring them more views, and in reality this television spot is just an elongated commercial for Django Unchained.

True enough, but I’m not sure if this particular commercial makes me wanna go and see it. Don’t get me wrong, I have a strong stomach for gore and “edgy” subject matter. It’s more about the director himself, and the cult that surrounds him, a cult which facilitates his often over-indulgent film-making. If the truth is that he actually CAN’T answer these questions, if he doesn’t even have a stock answer prepared, then why in hell should I sit through almost three hours of him working that shit out on a big screen?

Reservoir Dogs was one of the key movies that sparked my undying obsession with films and film-making, and I would still class it as one of my favorite films, so I have been there with the Tarantino idolation. As the years have gone by, as I have seen a shit-ton more films, and as I have gotten a lot older and a little wiser, I have been less and less impressed. British critic Mark Kermode absolutely nails the problems with Tarantino and his work in this review of Death Proof (ironically, the last Tarantino movie I enjoyed).

Essentially I feel that Tarantino is film-maker who has nothing to say. Nothing to say except for having seen more movies than you. And that’s not the best reason to be acclaimed as an auteur, and certainly not the best reason to begin tackling such weighty events as World War 2 and the slave trade.

But, hey, that’s just my opinion. And I probably will end up going to see Django Unchained, if only to make my mind up.

Enough about me though, what do you think?

Is Quentin Tarantino a genius film-maker? Was he right to “shut” Murthy’s “butt down” in this interview? Should he be expected to answer questions about violence in movies? Or is that not part of his responsibility as a director of violent movies?

Here’s the clip. After a tense start, the pan really boils over from the 4:30 mark:


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Like a scene from ‘Pulp Fiction’: Would-be robber ends up as captive sex slave

The headline says it all:

Robber who broke into hair salon is beaten by its black-belt owner and kept as a sex slave for three days… fed only Viagra

The Mail reports on a Russian man who is said to have tried to rob a hair salon, but soon ended up as the victim when the female shop owner overpowered him, tied him up naked and then used him as a sex slave for 3 days.

Viktor Jasinski, 32, admitted to police that he had gone to the salon in Meshchovsk, Russia, with the intention of robbing it.

But the tables were turned dramatically when he found himself overcome by owner Olga Zajac, 28, who happened to be a black belt in karate.

She allegedly floored the would-be robber with a single kick.

Then, in a scene reminiscent of Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, police say Zajac dragged the semi-conscious Jasinski to a back room of the salon and tied him up with a hair dryer cable.

She allegedly stripped him naked and, for the next three days, used him as a sex slave to ‘teach him a lesson’ - force feeding him Viagra to keep the lesson going.

The would-be robber was eventually released, with Zajak saying he had learned his lesson.

A blurred image of Olga Zajac, who allegedly held would-be robber Viktor Jasinski prisoner for 3 days in a back room of her hair salon, where she fed him Viagra and had sex with him “a couple of times”

Jasinski went straight to the police and told them of his back-room ordeal, saying that he had been held hostage, handcuffed naked to a radiator, and fed nothing but Viagra.

Both have now been arrested.

When police arrived to question Zahjac, she said: ‘What a bastard. Yes, we had sex a couple of times. But I bought him new jeans, gave him food and even gave him 1,000 roubles when he left.”

All far too reminiscent of that famous scene from Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction


Thanks to DM reader Tom for posting a link to Kiri Blakely‘s blog on Forbes, which explains that this story is over 2-years-old:

The entire wacky incident happened over two years ago, in April of 2009. Here is the Moscow Times story on it. The story wasn’t exactly underreported, either. Google “sex slave Moscow hair salon” and over 200,000 results come up, all of them dated April 2009.

The Daily Mail also acts like the Russian sex slave incident just happened today. Was there some new news here that would entail [the Daily Mail and Gawker] republishing this two-year-old story? Maybe a trial or sentencing or something? Not from what I can see in either the Gawker or Daily Mail pieces. It’s the same old story—though granted, it’s a good one!

Read the whole article here.

Via the Daily Mail

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Quentin Tarantino’s seldom seen first movie: ‘My Best Friend’s Birthday’
12:36 am


Quentin Tarantino
My Best Friend's Birthday

My Best Friend’s Birthday is the first film directed by Quentin Tarantino. Shot in 1984 for $5000, the rough cut was 70 minutes long before a fire at the processing lab destroyed all but 36 minutes of the film. It’s never been officially released.

Co-written with Craig Hamaan and photographed by Roger Avery, My Best Friend’s Birthday stars a motley collection of Tarantino’s video store co-workers and friends from acting class.

The stylistic foundations upon which Quentin built his career -Scorsese, Godard, Cassavetes, blaxpoitation and rock and roll - are evident in this clumsy but fun little flick. And the dialog is unmistakably what was later to become known as Tarantinoesque.

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Quentin Tarantino’s Trunk Shots
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A Basterds Antidote: Kobayashi’s The Human Condition

Although I found parts of Inglourious Basterds entertaining (especially the acting), Quentin Tarantino’s rewriting of World War II’s end days left me, as a whole, both confused and disappointed.  I can understand film as wish-fulfillment (that’s why we go to movies).  I can also recognize the appeal of what-if scenarios (The Man In The High Castle, anyone?).  But fighting genocide with genocide, and showing it triumph, over Hitler and History, strikes me as infantile, and reduces to cartoonish dimensions the very real horrors of the time.

And if you’re of the camp that thinks QT’s commenting, like, ironically on this stuff, that would mean you could detect, amid all the gunshots and carvings, a trace of regret here and there—even some ambivalence.  Well, you can’t.  Not in a single, gleeful frame.  It would also presuppose some recognition on Tarantino’s part of life beyond film—of film as a reflecting pool that’s capable of bouncing back at us something more than the shards and slivers of other films.  I’m not sure he’s that self-aware.  I’m not sure he cares to be.

For me, the war film, or, more specifically, The Nazi War Film, best conveys its horror when its full dimensions haven’t yet been realized.  As something approaching on the horizon, dark and inevitable for the film’s participants.  I think that’s why the below clip from Cabaret chills far more effectively than anything in Basterds or Downfall; why a Weimar-era Aryan youth singing as he salutes freaks me the fuck out far more than the table-banging Hitlers of Wuttke and Ganz.

So, with all this in mind, I read with great interest Grady Hendrix’s Slate piece about this week’s Criterion release of Masaki Kobayashi‘s The Human Condition:

Deep where Basterds is shallow, expansive where Basterds is puny, and profound where Basterds is glib, Kobayashi’s humanist triumph is finally getting the Western exposure it deserves.  Based in part on a six-volume novel by Junpei Gomikawa and, in part, on Kobayashi’s own wartime experiences as a pacifist trying to survive in the Japanese army, The Human Condition is as grand in scale and scope as that other anti-war classic, Gone With the Wind.  Like the South, Japan lost a war and can’t stop talking about it.  Every great Japanese director has a movie about the traumas of WWII under his belt, but none is as ambitious as The Human Condition.

Before you rush to queue this up, though, Hendrix also warns that the movie runs nine-and-a-half hours (albeit spread over three films), and is so “monumentally painful to watch, that it stands as the Grand Canyon of despair.”  Well, for those of you willing to commit yourselves to only, say, the San Fernando Valley of despair, the following trailer for Part I clocks in at just under 5 minutes.

Posted by Bradley Novicoff | Leave a comment