After not seeing any movies for a while (no particular reason, mostly friends had already seen everything I was interested in seeing) I got around to seeing two movies this last week. The first was the fantastic Lost In Translation. I don’t know what to say about this if you haven’t seen it. In fact I don’t really want to say much because that could be ruining parts of it. I will just say that Bill Murray gives a fantastic performance, he definitely deserves accolades and nominations for this (unlike the zilch that he got for his performance in Rushmore). Scarlet Johansen was much better here than in Ghost World (I just thought her acting was flat in GW, but that could have been her character). The direction was right on and the settings were great in evoking the feeling of alienation one would expect from being in Japan and not knowing the language or customs. If you like touching movies and like Bill Murray at all the I suggest you go see Lost In Translation.
The second movie I saw was Kill Bill, Vol. 1. In his other movies I would say I was so-so on Tarantino’s other films. Reservoir Dogs has been my favorite of his thus far. Pulp Fiction was well written and I enjoyed it, but Jackie Brown while written and shot well, just didn’t do anything for me. The first thing people say about Kill Bill is that it’s very bloody or gory. Well, they’re right. At some points it is a bit comical with the blood spraying around and limbs flying, but it’s all very well done. I’m actually looking forward to the second half of the movie so I can see how it all ends. Some of my favorite parts of Kill Bill are the allusions to cult classic movies and directors. Following the boots walking on a hardwood floor like Sergio Leone. The fights that are reminiscent of Chang Cheh and Bruce Lee movies. All well done and very fitting. Anyway, if you can put up with the blood (which apparently some people in the theater couldn’t) then Kill Bill might be okay for you to go see, but it’s really hard to tell because some people just aren’t going to like the style of the movie at all. For those that are wondering, there is one fight sequence that is converted to black and white. Apparently that was to keep the film from getting an NC-17 rating in the good ole U.S. of A. I expect it will be available in full bloody color on the DVD, but only time will tell.