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Thoughts on Hateful Eight

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Hateful-Eight-posterHateful Eight was the last movie I saw in 2015 and I have some thoughts that I would like to share. Like any Quentin Tarantino film, it was fantastic. It had it all: great script, brilliant dialogue, fluid, near perfect performances, and excellent cinematography. Where it ranks in the Tarantino canon is still up in the air.

A period piece, taking place in post-Civil War Wyoming, it’s Tarantino’s third such film. The other two, of course, are Unglorious Basterds, set during World War II, and Django Unchained, set during pre-Civil War South. Tarantino said he wants to be known as a Western director and plans two additional movies set in the West, so expect more.

And like Unglorious Basterds and Django Unchained, Hateful Eight is a meditation on race. There’s no doubt where Tarantino stands on the issue. He has the police squarely in the crosshairs with his comments protesting police brutality. People forget the context of race these days: Race still matters; we are not living in a post-racial world as some would like to believe. You just have to follow the Black Lives Matter movement to figure out why.

Another interesting thing to note about Hateful Eight is the portrayal of women. Of the eight main characters in the film, only one is female, Daisy, and she’s detestable. Even though she’s a criminal, a racist, and a cold-blooded murderer, she inspires sympathy because she is abused—by a man!—throughout the movie. Is society sympathetic to abused women simply because she’s a women regardless how vile a human being she might be? And if a man was vile as Daisy, and was abused like her, would he be equally as sympathetic? I guess Tarantino wanted us to think about it because he doesn’t answer the question for us.

Lastly, like all his other films, Tarantino engages in genre-bending with Hateful Eight. It’s a mystery movie wrapped in a western, wrapped in a political polemic. And as usual, it works brilliantly.

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Written by niraj

January 5th, 2016 at 8:21 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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