I, among many others, love WWII movies, like Saving Private Ryan and Enemy at The Gates, because we all find the subject intriguing and we all want to imagine the lives of soldiers. That’s what some historically accurate movies bring us. Inglourious Basterds isn’t one of them. A movie reshaping the course of the war and changing all important details? Many people automatically assumed that the movie would suck, and many people actually hated it. They were like “What the hell was Quentin Tarantino thinking?!” . But again, what’s historically accurate in what the director calls Tarantinoverse? Instead of giving us a moving film that would bring tears out of our eyes, or that would set our patriotism in motion, he brought us an original story line, with all the irony that can be found in a single movie. I think that even the name is written mistakenly because Tarantino wanted to highlight the fact that the movie isn’t historically accurate in any way.
As most Tarantino movies, this one is consisted of multiple chapters and multiple story lines as well: A group of anti-Nazi soldiers, most of who are Jews, are planting terror in the Germans’ hearts. The Basterds, lead by Lt. Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt), get involved in a British/American plan to kill Hitler. Shosanna (Mélanie Laurent), a Jewish cinema owner whose whole family was massacred by Col. Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz) and his soldiers.
The difference between the multiple story lines is fascinating, and the way they all collide is simple genius. The way Tarantino told his story was also awesome. Chapters.. Chapters are genius. My personal favorite was Chapter Four: Operation Kino. It was just fabulous.
You may say that the great job ends here, but it doesn’t. A good screenwriter brings you a good dialogue, but what Tarantino did is delivering us a great dialogue in more than three languages. How crazy is that? A French, an English, a German, and a small but hilarious Italian dialogue. Brilliance! That was without a doubt one of the movie’s strong points.
To add more value to Tarantino’s directing, the performance was tip-top. The actors were perfect for their roles, the casting was brilliant, and one should take in consideration that the movie required actors with fluent German, French and Italian. Michael Fassbender did an awesome job, and he was as charming as his character. But the one true chapeau-bas goes to Christoph Waltz, who in fact won an Oscar for his supporting role in the movie. The dude was charming and stole every scene he was in. The way he talked in all four languages was brilliant. The dude is just crazy.
But Inglourious Basterds wasn’t just about good directing, performance and story line, it was about sending a message. The movie isn’t about good and evil, it’s just about how ugly the war can get. No matter how fictional Inglourious Basterds is, Tarantino showed us that no war is clean, and that all people implicated would do awful and gruesome things; war crimes. However, Tarantino’s way of delivering the message was astonishing. Tarantino fans will understand better what I’m talking about. He gets us where he wants us to be by some action packed scenes, some ironic situations, and the occasional laugh (Brad Pitt talking Italian was just hilarious), instead of making an over emotional and dark movie. And I think that his approach is better than others, because, while Defiance, for example, would get boring if you watch it more than once, Inglourious Basterds would not. Instead, it’s entertaining and amusing to the very last second of it, and would be watched over and over again without ever getting old. That’s what characterizes a good movie, isn’t it?
Bottom line is that this Tarantino film was not your regular WWII movie. It wasn’t over emotional and wasn’t too serious. It was a masterpiece, entertaining all the way, with many amusing moments. More than three languages, more than five chapters, more than two story lines, all in just one movie. It’s a must watch for everyone, just like any other Tarantino movie.