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Kill Bill, Vol. I rant - Open Knowledge — LiveJournal

Apr. 28th, 2004

01:43 am - Kill Bill, Vol. I rant

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So I finally saw Kill Bill, Vol. I....



I love to see action films in which the characters abide by the laws of physics/physiology, there are no internal inconsistencies, and characters actually do things for logical reasons.

Kill Bill, Vol. I is not that movie. Yes, I know that it's intended as a live-action Manga strip/homage to '70's chop-socky kung fu movies. But it still bugs me.

* When did airlines begin allowing you to carry giant samurai swords on-board? Even before 09/11, I think it's something they'd frown upon.

* Why was she still driving the "Pussy Wagon"? It's not exactly an inconspicuous car, and when the body of the orderly and his pal were found, you can bet that there was an apb out for it.

* You know the scene--our hero slashes the villian, and at first, it appears nothing has happened. Maybe the villain even smiles or talks. Then the villian's head falls off/torso falls off/body collapses into small chunks. Okay, maybe it was cool the first time. But by now, it's cliche--Star Wars/EP1, Resident Evil, The Cube, Underworld, Ghost Ship--all of them have that scene (and probably many others that I'm forgetting at the moment). Note to Quentin Tarantino--it's impossible make complex sentences with a missing frontal cortex. Also, the brain gets 30% of the body's blood supply--you cut the top of someone's head off, and you're gonna get blood everywhere.

* I understand that samurai swords are cool and all, but surely someone in the yakuza owns a gun?

* Where were the Japanese police? If a crowd of people comes out screaming that a blond woman just hacked off someone's arm, you'd think that the police would've sent someone over.

* Goddamnit, if your enemy collapses to the ground, hurry up and finish him/her off. Don't stand there waiting for her to get up again.

* After four years in a coma, it's highly unlikely that anyone would be strong enough to kill two burly men with his/her bare hands immediately after waking up.

* For that matter, why didn't she just get a gun? A Glock 30 is going to be more effective than any sword, Hattori Hanzai steel or no.

* Gorgeous, tall asian women dressed in cherry red spandex body suits are going to be noticed. Same for 6 ft. tall statuesque blond nurses with eye-patches. For once, I'd like to see an assassin who looks like a dumpy diner waitress.

Comments:

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From:killerweasel
Date:April 28th, 2004 06:31 am (UTC)
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LMAO

You liked it about as much as I did!

You telling me gushots in a house in a neighborhood like that, and none of the neighbors are out on their lawns looking to see what's going on?

A friend of mine also saw it, and we were wondering why no one had noticed that there were 2 dead guys in the room. She was out in the parking lot for what, 13 hours or something? and no one notices?
He says: she must have moved the bodies.
me: how? dragged them to the closet with her teeth?

And why weren't her arms as dead as her legs? If her legs were atrophied, her arms should have been too!

For being this deadly gang in Japan, the minions certainly sucked. What are the requirements to be in the gang? Black mask, sword, and a suit. Hey, you're in!

The main thing that bothered me though, was I know he was using stuff from the older action movies. But! the older movies didn't have huge budgets and blue screens and wires and highly paid actors. They had people that were actually that damn good at fighting.
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From:crasch
Date:April 28th, 2004 07:20 am (UTC)
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I figured her legs were more non-functional due to the bullet wound. However, even if that was the case, no matter how good her PT, her arms would still be too weak to do anything to those guys.
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From:bkleber
Date:April 28th, 2004 12:53 pm (UTC)
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her arms were more functional because of the fly bite that woke her up. Obviously.
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From:galith
Date:April 28th, 2004 06:58 am (UTC)
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Kill Bill vol 1 not so good. Decent action movie if you get in the mood for it.

Kill Bill vol 2 MUCH better. Not an action movie. More psychological, gets inside your head. Still has lots of unbelievable stuff, but motivations makes a lot of sense. And the characters are actually developed.
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From:crasch
Date:April 28th, 2004 07:21 am (UTC)
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I thought Kill Bill was okay. But it could've been so much better.
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From:pbrane
Date:April 28th, 2004 08:49 am (UTC)
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wow - you must *hate* comic-book movies...
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From:crasch
Date:April 29th, 2004 07:44 pm (UTC)
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It depends on the comic book movie. I didn't care for the Batman movies, but I liked X-Men (I and II), and Spiderman.
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From:polyanarch
Date:April 28th, 2004 10:50 am (UTC)
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I liked it. It was a comical farce. It wasn't supposed to make any more sense than the Kung-fu movies it was a tribute to.

Sitting 13 hours in the hospital parking lot in the bloody dead victim's 'pussy wagon' while recovering from 4 years worth of coma and head injury and not being noticed (or the wheelchair she jettisoned getting in) was a bit much for me too.

Blood spraying like a water fountain every time someone was chopped with the sword was kind of over-the-top too but it was meant to be. Japanese katanas are not meant to ever contact other blades. They are too fragile. True masters avoid such contact and swordplay is mere maneuvering to make that 'perfect strike' where the enemy will NOT be able to parry as the enemy has incorrectly changed positions to meet yours. But it was still come cool swordplay even if it was fantastic.

I just saw it last night for the first time. I guess I just missed the whole hoopla when it came out last year. I can't wait until the second one comes out on DVD.
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From:dorei
Date:April 28th, 2004 11:55 am (UTC)
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I loved it. It reminded me of the silliness of all the kung fu flicks of the 60's and 70's. Especially the blood spurting out of the various wounds.
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From:andysocial
Date:April 28th, 2004 12:31 pm (UTC)
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You forgot about Wile E. Coyote - he got sliced into little pieces pretty regularly. :-)
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From:discopete1
Date:April 28th, 2004 12:35 pm (UTC)
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I haven't seen either and don't plan to unitl I can get them for free on HBO or something. I prefer Charlie Kaufman's writing to Donald Kaufman's any day.
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From:lucystag
Date:April 28th, 2004 04:02 pm (UTC)
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Haha, wow...You noticed stuff I never did. But it's all very true.

I thought it was a decent movie, entertaining...Not the masterpiece the five males I saw it with seemed to think, though.

Volume 2 is better as well.
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From:kitnish
Date:April 28th, 2004 05:25 pm (UTC)
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I loved it. :) (Just saw it last night with polyanarch) I think it was intended to be unrealistic. When did people start expecting movies to be so realistic? If I want realism, I'll go stand on the street corner. Er...go to the mall...or something. ;)
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From:crasch
Date:April 28th, 2004 08:28 pm (UTC)
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I don't expect realism--I expect internal consistency. The movie was set in modern U.S. and Japan, and there was no explanation for why those characters would not be bound by the same laws of physics, physiology, and social context that such a setting implies.

I can accept fantastical elements as long as there are some explanations for them. For example, I can accept that she was supernaturally skilled because there are flashbacks to her training with some martial arts master. I could also accept that her blade was better than all others due to it's construction by a master swordsman, Hattori Hanzai.

But given that guns exist in that setting, choosing to go after her enemies with a sword in the first place just seems stupid.
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From:kitnish
Date:April 28th, 2004 08:40 pm (UTC)
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It struck me as being kind of comic-booky. There are lots of things that are unexplained in those kinds of genres. The reader/watcher is just expected to accept that, even though there are many similarities to modern culture, it's not the same universe, though that's often not explicitly stated.

I have a high threshold for "suspending disbelief." I may notice things (like the sword on the plane), but I just ignore it and watch the movie for its own merits. I liked the fact that it was unrealistic. Blood squirting everywhere, heads flying, supernatural martial arts...the unrealistic is what allows me to watch a pretty gory and disturbing movie and enjoy it for the artistry of different shooting styles, use of color, music, etc. without being grossed out too much.
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From:jimbojones
Date:April 28th, 2004 10:10 pm (UTC)
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Everything you complained about in Vol 1, which I enjoyed (though noting all the things you did) is just as present in Vol 2... only, instead of keeping you in sensory overload with non-stop action so you don't have to think too much about how incredibly silly it all is, in Volume 2 you get treated to ENDLESS 15-minute segments of not a god damn thing happening at all, so you have PLENTY of time to get FAR too bored to overlook how dumb what you're watching is.

I torrented Vol 1 last night, and saw Vol 2 today in the theatre. I wish I'd done it the other way around.
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From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 29th, 2004 06:35 pm (UTC)

Jesus Christ

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Nitpicking about any film in this manner, let alone an entertainment flick like this is pitiful. I cannot IMAGINE how annoying you people must be in person.
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From:fare
Date:May 2nd, 2004 12:44 pm (UTC)

I loved that movie

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I enjoyed the movie quite a lot, despite my noticing all the things you said, and more. For instance, the bride can fight quite well with a more than skin-deep wound on her right arm, and in the end, with a more than skin-deep wound in her back (wow!) -- let's forget about all the kicks and blows she otherwise takes. And she spits while in coma, and remembers a few thing from that state, too. Obviously she is not a mere human -- she is a superheroin. And she's bulletproof, too, as demonstrates her early survival -- which is probaly why the yakuza chose to fight her with swords. As for the police, it's only there to inspect crime scenes on the day after.

As for supernatural physics, what about the plane that flies much too near the ground? What optical phenomenon makes the ground seem even nearer through the window? Obviously the physics of that world is not that of ours. Not to tell about the way the world turns black and white in the middle of a fight -- I never heard of the real world turning black and white, ever, however momentarily.

Most important inconsistency: there is no Dr. Lawrence Bell who ever lived with his wife and daughter in Pasadena. Doesn't that make the movie outrageously unrealistic? To me, that's a killer.

The secret to enjoying a movie is to let go and accept the premises. If I wanted an immersion in rationality, I'd read an Ayn Rand essay (not even one of her novels, except maybe We The Living).
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