Tuesday, September 1, 2009

More "Basterds"

I'm sure all of you would love to read what I think about District 9, Big Fan, and The Final Destination - and I would love to finish the reviews I have half-written for them - but I just can't get Inglourious Basterds out of my head. I knew there was only one solution to this problem, so I saw the movie again. It's even better the second time around. I can tell that this will be the kind of film that will increase enjoyment because of the known experience, gaining a richness through repetition, an even greater greatness through familiarity. During the second viewing, tension was joined by anticipation. Not only was I still nervous about character's fates, but I was anticipating lines, shots, scenes, set-pieces, and music cues with giddy delight. I nearly laughed out loud at how much fun I was having. This is a great movie.

With so much to praise, and so much to contemplate (take a look at the spoiler-heavy epic conversation hosted by Dennis Cozzalio), it's not strange that one of its greatest attributes is quite simply that it is an incredibly fun movie. It's also not strange to discover that I left out some praise in my initial review. I was shocked to discover that I barely mentioned the character played by Michael Fassbender, and neglected to mention his name. He's great; a charming and cool critic, as Archie Hicox, he's instantly one of my all-time favorite screen portrayals of the profession, right up there next to Addison DeWitt and Anton Ego.

I was also shocked I failed to mention characters played by Daniel Bruhl and Jacky Ido. As a German war hero and a French projectionist, respectively, they don't have large parts in the film but their performances are wonderful, and their relationships with Soshanna are important to her behavior. Also doing good work with small roles - as mostly silent Basterds - are Til Schweiger (HUGO STIGLITZ!), Omar Doom, and B.J. Novak.

This is a great movie. I already want to see it again, but now my head is clearer and I can move on to the other reviews. I (probably) won't get sidetracked again, and I definitely don't want to get further behind in my posting, but no promises.

As a certain Basterd said so well, "Arrivederci!"

Update (9/2/09): In this post, I singled out actors for praise that I neglected to give in my initial post on the film. Today, I am struck by my neglect (twice over) to mention August Diehl, who is excellent playing a Nazi officer who is a large part in the third chapter's now-famous bar scene. My apologies to Mr. Diehl.

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