When this first came out I wasn’t entirely sure that I wanted to see it. As I’ve said elsewhere, I don’t really go for war movies, but I do like Tarantino and the clips of Brad Pitt suggested that I might want to see more of what was clearly going to be an idiosyncratic performance. Decision taken out of my hands by the Book God who was overwhelmed by curiosity.

So hopefully it’s not a spoiler to say that Inglorious Basterds is set in an alternative WWII, where Brad Pitt as Aldo Raine brings together a band of Jewish American soldiers to wreak havoc behind enemy lines in Europe, scalping Nazis wherever they find them. In parallel, Shosanna, a French Jewish woman who has survived the murder of her family by the film’s arch-villain, Hans Landa, has now taken on the identity of the owner of a cinema in Paris where the premiere of a propaganda film will be held in front of a number of major Nazis, possibly including Hitler himself. Cue an opportunity to bring the war to an early end in a blaze of glory.

So, main thoughts:

  • This is not WWII as we know it
  • Brad Pitt gives an odd but entertaining performance (probably based on someone famous that I couldn’t spot)
  • Christoph Waltz definitely deserved his Best Supporting Actor Oscar
  • Melanie Laurent is excellent
  • Mike Myers is almost unrecognisable in a cameo which given my love-hate relationship with him is not a bad thing (and to be fair he was quite good)
  • I thought Rod Taylor was dead, who knew he could play Churchill? Still love him from The Time Machine so fab to see him on screen again
  • Eli Roth should stick to directing (and even then…..)

It is as violent as you would expect but not excessively so given the subject matter. Some have said that it’s too long but to be honest I didn’t find that at all, I was absolutely fixed on finding out how it would all end, and it was rather satisfying in its own way.

Would certainly watch it again.

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