Topic: Quentin Tarantino
Y'know, I actually think I'm starting to like the films of Quentin Tarantino a lot more than I used to!
I remember way back in 1994, I first saw Pulp Fiction when it was playing in a local theater. I enjoyed watching it, but I felt somewhat ambivalent about the overall artistic sensibility of this Quentin Tarantino guy. (At that point, I hadn't yet seen Reservoir Dogs.) And it's kind of difficult for me to put my finger on exactly why I felt this way.
Perhaps it was because I thought that Tarantino's overall style was just a little too clever and contrived. Don't get me wrong, I like the non-linear method of storytelling a great deal, but to me there seemed to be something almost self-consciously cinematic about his whole approach, and it kind of took me out of the story. Also, the whole shooting-the-breeze conversational quality of the dialogue sort of had the opposite effect from the one that Tarantino intended. I know that he was trying to be realistic by having his characters talking about matters unrelated to the plot-related business, but it just came across as a bit of an affectation to me.
However, little by little I've been slowly warming up to Quentin's whole style. I liked both of the Kill Bill movies (mainly because I looked at them as a kind of post-modern stylistic exercise), and I also had a fun time at Grindhouse. (Although I must confess to liking Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror much more than Tarantino's Death Proof.)
In spite of Tarantino's strong dislike of what was done to his original story, I've always been a devout fan of Oliver Stone's controversial Natural Born Killers. (And believe me, Quentin's stylistic fingerprints still remain visible no matter how many changes Stone made.)
I've always been a big fan of horror movies, and Tarantino's horror connections have also played a key role in my warming up to his work. I saw Robert Rodriguez's From Dusk Till Dawn (which he starred in and co-wrote) in the theater in 1996, and enjoyed it very much. His own film company re-released Lucio Fulci's 1981 zombie classic The Beyond in 1998, and more recently he was the executive producer for Eli Roth's Hostel films, which I personally believe are modern classics of the more "extreme" variety of the genre.
So Quentin Tarantino is still not one of my all-time filmmakers, but it's hard to argue with his talent, his enthusiasm, or the sheer uniqueness of his work. The best thing you could possibly say about any filmmaker is that you just know when you're watching one of his films even if you've never seen it before and missed the credits!
Last edited by Darth Pazuzu (2007-07-23 18:30:44)