Browse all reviews by letter     A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0 - 9

USA 2003/2004
Directed by
Quentin Tarantino
106 minutes
Rated R

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
2.5 stars

Kill Bill, Vols 1 & 2

Quentin Tarantino’s long-awaited follow-up to Jackie Brown (1997) is a stylish homage to Hong Kong action movies but beneath the splash and splatter there is nothing but a surprisingly uninventive revenge movie with Uma Thurman’s character, “The Bride”, indefatigably working her way through a line-up of killers, members of the "Deadly Viper Assassination Squad" responsible for the death of her to-be husband, his friends and her unborn child at her wedding ceremony.  

Originally conceived of as a single movie by Tarantino but released in two volumes a year apart by Harvey Weinstein (a decision acquiesced to by Tarantino) this may have hurt the movie theatrically but for home theatre audiences this is not an issue. Even so it’s hard to get very excited about the progressive elimination of Bill’s Squad  - Vernita Green a.k.a. Copperhead (Vivica A. Fox), O-Ren Ishi a.k.a. Cottonmouth (Lucy Liu), Budd a.k.a. Side Winder (Michael Madsen), and Elle Driver a.k.a. California Mountain Snake (Daryl Hannah) with the Cottonmouth episode in particular being overlong and its wire work not especially well-done. Bill (David Carradine) is left to last and one hopes that Tarantino will have saved up something  special but disappointingly the ending is rather anti-climactic.

Tarantino’s trade-mark pop-cultural jiving is simply not here and his characterisations are far from his best, being more cartoonish than is usual for the director. Probably this is a result of the limitations of his chop suey models. If you don’t share his fondness for geysers of blood sewing from severed limbs (particularly in the Cottonmouth episode) the film is unlikely to float your boat.  The various formal tricks he falls back on in the generally overlong Vol.2 don’t amount to anything much either.  Fortunately Tarantino’s good taste in pop music is in evidence but even so Kill Bill Vols. 1 & 2 are a disappointment.




Want something different?

random vintage best worst