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The Better Half
slokes24 September 2004
It's a matter of some debate which volume of Quentin Tarantino's "Kill Bill" is better. Let's end the argument right now: David Carradine doesn't even appear in "Volume 1." Hasn't the Academy mailed him his Best Supporting Actor Oscar already?

In the first volume of "Kill Bill," released only a few months before "Vol. 2" in the tail end of 2003, we met Uma Thurman, one peeded-off super-assassin taking out some folks from her past one at a time, with the occasional mega-posse thrown in for interest. "Vol. 1" had a lot of blood, violence, and wisecracks, and galloped across the screen like a rap video on steroids.

"Vol. 2" is way different. It makes sense it's a separate movie; the tone is such a departure from "Vol. 1" in two ways. One is style. Director Tarantino has fun stylistically quoting Sergio Leone and chop-fu cheapos from the late 1960s and early 1970s. Cinematic sampling is something he's good at and enjoys, but in "Vol. 2" he doesn't go as overboard as he does in "Vol. 1." He pulls back and lets the plot breathe, rather than filling every spare second with a homage-cum-parody that maybe a dozen lucky fans will get. Maybe some here wish he'd pile it on a bit more, but they have to make do with the goofy Pei Mai sequence, which is a flashback and hence not jarring in its "Vol. 1"-style comic-book treatment. Throughout "Vol. 2" the emphasis is on storytelling and character-building, which is where it should be given we are now being asked to deepen our commitment of interest to these people. "Vol. 1" is okay for what it is, but its flash and action are no match for the depth and nuance of "Vol. 2."

This gets to the second different tonal difference between the films, which is emotional. It all comes back to the characters. They don't quite become real people here, but they get close enough to get under your skin. Admittedly, the opening part of "Vol. 2" tests the viewer's patience a bit, there's some long bits that show the director hasn't really mastered self-discipline, like with Thurman's graveyard struggle, but the meandering usually has a purpose. Tarantino is building toward something here that has its payoff when Thurman's character finally has her face-to-face showdown with Carradine's Bill.

From that moment forward to the end, this is the best Tarantino has ever been.

Carradine and Thurman dominate the proceedings with two of the finest performances I've seen, certainly the best Tarantino has directed, playing off the mythology we've been taught in "Vol. 1" and developing resonances with the viewer both together and apart which will surprise those expecting a casual butt-kicking affair. We finally find out what Carradine means in the first line of "Vol. 1" where he tells a whimpering victim he is being masochistic, not sadistic, and its a powerful revelation, that this sinister baddie may have a heart buried under that cold exterior. Carradine is perfect in his phrasing, his pauses, the tired glint in his eye, or the way he says "Kiddo." You can't ask for a better veteran performance. For her part, Thurman presents a brilliantly conflicted character who can not stop either hating or loving Bill, and brings us not into a world of cartoon anguish, but real human pain.

"Kill Bill Vol. 2" is slow-moving, and needs "Vol. 1" in a way few sequels do, since it assumes you know nearly all the characters coming in. That's a weakness. So are some undeniably pointless bits, including the entire sequence with Bill's father figure, Esteban Vihaio, and some business at a bar involving Michael Madsen, who plays a former assassin now gone to seed.

Madsen's good, though, and so's Daryl Hannah as another rather mouthy assassin, Gordon Liu as Pei Mei, and especially Perla Haney-Jardine as a girl named B.B. The nice thing with Tarantino is for every scene that strikes a bum note, there's four or five that hit the right mark, and some manage to do much more. My favorite scene involves a Mexican standoff in an L.A. hotel room between Thurman's character and an anonymous hitwoman, at once grippingly suspenseful, hilarious, and life-affirming. Still, it's the final moments of this film that will stay with you, as Bill and his former pupil work out their "unfinished business" and we are left to ponder the results of their decisions and actions.

"Kill Bill Vol. 2" may not reach the heights of cinema to which it aspires, the level of "The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly" quoted in its score, but it's a fine film that will make most viewers glad they stuck around for the second installment. I am.
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Glad to see the split.
WalterFrith20 January 2005
When I first heard that this film was going to be split into two movies instead of being presented as one as originally planned, I was angry. I accused the powers that be of trying to squeeze two box office triumphs out of a single project. But after having seen both 'Kill Bill' and 'Kill Bill Vol.2', I am glad because both films are extremely different even though the stories are tied together with primarily the same actors and having the same director. Containing less action than 'Kill Bill', volume 2 is intelligent, bizarre and extremely engrossing. It absorbs all of its elements equally and David Carradine's performance as Bill is the best thing to happen in movie villain history since, well, I'll leave that up to individual interpretation.
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A Tarantino Masterpiece
abacus245 July 2006
Over the last 40 years, I've seen a lot of movies. All types. Some great, some good and some mostly inedible; most left my breath with a sour smell. Westerns, sci-fi, comedies, dramas, etc. After seeing Kill Bill Vol I, I assumed that any sequel would pale to its predecessor. I, of course, was premature in my prediction. The movie was, by all means, a classic. I feel Taratino was really trying to make a great movie versus making money for his producers. To build his tasty sandwich, he took the lessons he learned from life as a movie maker and cleverly managed to meld some slices of meat from Sergio Leone (subtly), Akira Kurosawa (very subtly) and, I'm stretching it here, Ridley Scott, to create a great sequel to an excellent first movie. He used some great, almost forgotten actors (Daryl Hannah, Micheal Parks, and David Carradine to create a memorable meal. It was only a sandwich, but what morsel it was. I was full and wanting more. Very rare to find this type of film in our corporate world. He must wield some real power in the movie world. I don't know of anyone who has saw this movie who hasn't given it great feedback. And I know all types of viewers. My wife, who really doesn't like anything that is not overly melancholy or dripping with sentimentality, actually liked the whole movie. That in itself is an endorsement. Well done. Mr. Tarantino, you will be hard placed to match this gem.
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Tarantino's Triumph: Volume Two
Coventry22 April 2004
Rarely known a movie I've been looking forward to so much than Q.T's resumption of the Kill Bill saga. I, as well as millions of others film-freaks, awaited Uma Thurman's further adventures with wicked anticipation. And of course…Tarantino didn't disappoint. Volume two is a completely different movie than volume one, but it's equally brilliant and the director's trademarks are shown more than obviously. Volume one merely was homage to the Eastern Martial Arts movies, with delightfully over-the-top splatter and gore while Vol. 2 fully focuses on ancient westerns and rural horror. There's more dialogue, more twists ‘n turns and the anti-chronological structure results in more depth and involvement. Some unexplained elements from Vol.1 become clear now and even the entire background of Thurman's character gets unveiled. For the very first time, (as far as I can remember) Tarantino really knows how to create an unbearable tension! There's a sequence in which Uma is buried alive and trapped under the ground…Through simple methods, like a completely black screen, Tarantino arises claustrophobia among the audience! Truly terrific filmmaking.

The actors in Kill Bill aren't Hollywood's best, but they each have their charisma and their typical Tarantino characters do the rest. The camera viewpoints are brilliant at times and – as usual – the tiny absurd elements are a joy to discover. Tarantino's entire Kill Bill achievement may easily be considered as one of the most creative and dared film-projects ever! Do yourself a favor and watch them! …Over and over again.
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Different Yes, Bad, No
no_math923 October 2004
This movie is completely different from the first. Unlike the first with fast paced action and extreme entertainingly super-stylish gore, Kill Bill vol. 2 is everything that was missing in th first.

The Bride's revenge is burning strong and we can see it in her eyes. We discover the truth behind the wedding massacre and all questions from the 1st movie are answered. We discover why the Bride is the deadliest woman in the world. We discover why Elle is missing an eye. We discover who Bill really is. We discover the Brides name. And finally we discover the truth of the secret revealed at the end of Vol. 1.

Her first target is Budd. The loser bum ex-deadly assassin living in a trailer in the middle of nowhere. The short confrontation ends with one of the most terrifyingly claustrophobia-inducing (sp?) scenes ever...specially if you watch it in the dark. Then we are taken to the journey of how the Bride became the deadliest person in the world. We see the story between her and her hard-hitting very mean master Pai-Mei.

After a while there is the confrontation with Elle Driver...the Battle of the Blonde Uma Thurman referred to it in an interview. This one fight scene is almost as exciting as watching the Bride battling off tons of the Crazy 88s from Vol. 1.

Then the battle we were all waiting for. For Uma Thurman to Kill Bill...well I won't spoil it for you. Basically vol. 1 was 95% style 5% substance while vol. 2 is 95% substance 5% style. Very emotional and touching movie with a few key gore scenes...definitely a must see...
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Master film-making!
uds323 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Kill Bill: Vol 2 is a whole new ball-game. Whether you assess the film by virtue of its incisive dialog, its brilliant direction, acting par excellance or simply its `appeal,' there is but one factor - Tarantino. QT is to cinematic originality what Kubrick brought to deep space, and beyond the infinite!

A lifetime of forgettable movies excepting BOUND FOR GLORY and arguably Scorcese's BOXCAR BERTHA, is erased for Carradine overnight thanks to Tarantino. As Bill, Carradine has handed in his greatest performance to date.that is to say, QT drew it out of him. The `Old Grasshopper' conveys charm, menace.all the wordly acoutrements his profession would have brought to him. Playing the reed flute that he carved himself from a bamboo plantaton he actually set-up while still making Kung-Fu episodes, Carradine's first appearance outside the small church in El Paso set the scene for the entire movie. He commands our attention from that moment on. His last line, `How do I look?' was delivered with such believable sincerity and emotive sadness, it closed a chapter in Beatrix's and the viewer's recent experiences with remarkably good taste. The smallest part in this movie, from Samuel Jackson's cameo thru Bo Svenson's preacher to Michael Parks' gifted little turn as the crafty old Esteban is just flawless acting of the highest calibre.

QT 'regular' Madsen also scores with arguably his best portrayal in years as the alkified retired gang-member Budd (aka Sidewinder). He really looked the sad dead-beat that he had become.

The flashback sequences are never overlong, out of place or anything but chronologically correct. Everything from Volume 1 is explained. Beatrix's Kung-Fu training sequences with Master Pai Mai might be considered by many, the high point of the film. Certainly Tarantino's love of old Samurai flicks is evidenced throughout, especially in the brief but beautiful silhouette-shots of Master and pupil training. Nice touch too towards the end (I don't wish to give anything away here) where `X' and `Y' are watching SHOGUN ASSASSIN.

The final twenty minutes of the movie fully justify the term `awesome.' At the point Beatrix finally confronts Bill, no-one in the audience would be expecting to see what they do. All I will say is that the `little girl' involved is the most appealing and touchingly innocent little thing I have ever seen in a film. It was a master-stroke of casting, scripting and cinematography. A lot more I would like to say but cannot, without ruining the film for any future viewers.

In my opinion, no film ever made betters this!
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A masterpiece by Tarantino.
daria841 September 2004
I've been waiting to see this movie for so long, and when I finally saw it, I loved it! it was worth the wait.

Vol.2 picks up pretty much where Vol.1 left, except for some flashbacks explaining what really happened with the characters. Uma Thurman is back as The Bride, and we get to know her real name finally. Also Daryl Hannah comes back as Elle Driver, the one-eyed killer, Michael Madsen plays Budd, Bill's baby/loser brother, and the infamous Bill is played by David Carradine. The performances are just great, Uma Thurman delivers a great performance as The Bride, we finally get to know her character a little better and the true reasons why she wants to "Kill Bill". I also have to say that David Carradine was perfect to play Bill. He has great charisma and he's so smooth, it's impossible not to like him. Daryl Hannah's performance was great too, and Michael Madsen's too.

Once again the music plays a key factor in this movie, is very well selected and for every single scene the music fits perfectly. And of course, the dialogue. In this movie, we get a lot more dialogue than brutal fighting like in Vol.1, this movie is more centered in explaining what led Bill to do what he did, it pretty much focuses in the past, explaining the whole thing. I especially liked the dialogues between Bill (Carradine) and The Bride (Thurman), I thought they were clever and just great, like all Tarantino's dialogues. Also the locations were excelent, I have no idea where they shot the film, but the landscaping was great, I truly enjoyed it.

Well it would be better to see Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 as one movie, not different, because in the end, you must see them together to understand. So I give this movie a 10/10, I loved it, it was great, great dialogues, great performances, great fighting sequences, everything was great! And I think that Uma Thurman and/or David Carradine (at least him) should be nominated for an Oscar, they were perfect and they deserve that international film makers acknowledge that. Tarantino you are the best!!!
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Honestly better than the first
gmorgan-424 July 2004
Kill Bill Volume 2 is the astonishing follow-up to perhaps 2003's best film, Kill Bill Volume 1. Quentin Tarantino once again demonstrates a mastery of dialogue in this homage to the great western and kung fu movies that inspired him from his video clerk days.

Simply, this film is as entertaining as hell. Tarantino unabashedly takes the viewer for a joyride, and the end result is a movie with intense action, tempered with some of the best dialogue I have ever heard.

Some have pointed to this film as inferior to the first volume of Kill Bill: I disagree. Whereas Tarantino is a great action director (the scene in the first film with the crazy 88s is one of my top five favorite battle scenes of all time), he even surpasses this talent in his ability to write witty, intriguing dialogue: and this film really delivers it. One scene in particular, with David Carradine as Bill, near the end, speaking with Uma Thurman's The Bride while he makes a sandwich, is unforgettable and insightfully interesting. There are few points where the film drags, and the movie ultimately creates the impression of a visceral experience. 10/10. Go see this film, it is by far the best film released so far this year.
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On the whole, so to speak, or by itself, the second part of Kill Bill fits the Tarantinian psychology
Quinoa198422 August 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Although, as a film buff myself, having a whole Kill Bill epic in one sitting would've been satisfying, like the first part that was split Vol. 2 works extraordinarily well. In terms of storytelling it's direct and (of course) unconventional, in style Tarantino pays homage/borrows (or depending on your point of view steals) from most of the films that stew around in his arsenal. And with dialog, in maybe a couple of moments it doesn't seem up to par, but it's not often. And the acting is in the greatest tradition of B-movie, spaghetti western, shaw-brothers, kung-fu et. all. If you look at both Kill Bills it's fascinating as a movie buff to discover things you haven't seen before (i.e. the whole blood-coated style of the climax in vol. 1) and things you recognize right away (i.e. the unmistakable songs of Ennio Morricone, who is just as creditable as Leone for Tarantino's style).

What's there to say about the story, except that it picks up where it left off? Sort of- as usual, the non-linear story aspect kicks in, and two sections of the film derail from the continuing story of revenge on the DIVAs and Bill (the squad members this time being the perfectly paced in tone and presence Michael Madsen as Budd, and Daryl Hannah's most vindictive role as Elle Driver). At first, we get a stark, black and white view of what the "Massacre at Two Pines" was like, and right away we're introduced (finally) to Bill, played by David Carradine, one of the most calm, affecting film villain performances in recent memory. The other derailment is to tell the immensely entertaining story of The Bride's training by the heavy-duty Pai Mei (Gordon Liu, in one of his performances in the whole KB saga). This could be counted as the funnest part of the film, aside from a few key moments, as the camera sweeps from medium to close up happen every thirty seconds or so.

In the acting department, as I've said, Tarantino gets a big boost- this could be counted as being one of the key performances of not only Carradine's career, but Thruman's as well. They elevate the mood of Tarantino's (sometimes) tongue-in-cheek dialog, but they're also pro's that do their best when it comes time to the showdown, with monologues that come close to being QT's most memorable (although not his best- as cool as it all sounds, it doesn't hit the Pulp Fiction marker). When it does end, the whole operatic sense of the film seems to work, and to the audience it will either be a fitting end or a disappointment. It is, at least, the most ambitious action/comedy/drama/kung-fu/western/romance film (this is referring to Vol. and both volumes together) in many a moon; it's a lot like opening up the filmmaker's skull, and getting a scrambled up dosage of his memories and references, and it works much more often than not. Oh, and how about a bit of applause to Bob Richardson and Michael Parks! A+
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Kill Bill? Should be Kill Tarantino, more like...
Rob_Taylor30 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Awful, boring, slow and tedious are just a few words that spring to mind when I recall having to sit through Kill Bill Vol 2. And those are the kindest words I can think of. A few more choice words would be crap, s***e, rubbish or just plain retarded.

Now, I admit, I wasn't expecting KB Vol 1 rehashed, but I did expect something not too dissimilar from Vol 2. KB2 is to KB1 as The Sound of Music is to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The first film's non-stop action has been replaced almost entirely by non-stop dialogue. And not particular good dialogue either. In fact, I'll coin a new term here - dire-logue. The film is littered with it. Any film requires a certain amount of exposition, and even mystic claptrap like that in the Matrix movies. But KB Vol 2 takes claptrap to a new level that makes the Matrix movies look positively Spartan in terms of jibber-jabber. But the worst thing about the chatter in KB2 is the total and utter meaninglessness of most of it. It just drones on and on. A character makes a point verbally then, instead of getting on with the movie, the character is forced to belabour the point over and over until you're practically screaming at them to shut the Hell up and get on with it!

Nor do the pointlessly long (and in fact, just pointless) extra scenes add to the film in any way. For example, we learn that Bud (Bill's brother) lives in a trailer and has a crappy job at a local bar as a bouncer. He's become a loser - a far cry from his assassin days. What I've just summarized in two sentences is dragged out on film over the course of perhaps twenty minutes or more, including an entirely tedious and unnecessary set of scenes involving Bud at work that add absolutely nothing whatsoever to the film and introduce characters that have no bearing on the movie at all. Another scene involves the Bride talking to one of Bill's old colleagues in order to find out where Bill is located. This scene drags on terribly and gives the viewer pointless information on this character which again has precisely no bearing on the movie at all. The only scene which is worthy of inclusion is the obligatory training scene. This is a direct homage to many old Kung Fu movies, right down to the beard stroking sensei. But even this goes on unnecessarily and has you shifting uncomfortably in your seat. And although this scene ties in with the finale and burial scenes, it only serves to remind you that, whilst the Bride was seemingly unable to master punching her fist through a piece of wood, she was apparently highly enough thought of by Pai Mei (the sensei) that he taught her the "hand of death" trick which he had previously never taught to anyone. Hmmm.

The action sequences are brief and entirely unsatisfying for a movie based around the concept of revenge. Bud isn't even slain by the Bride, but by Elle using a Black Mamba (we know it's a Black Mamba because, as Bud is writhing in his death throes on the floor, Elle gives us a tedious five minute exposition on the snake). Elle isn't killed by the Bride, but rather maimed and left after a fight that was very scrappy and not at all elegant. And finally Bill, who is killed by the Bride (after endless boring dialogue about superheroes) in one of the most anticlimactic and disappointing "final encounter" scenes I've ever witnessed.

The truth of this movie is that it's really not a movie at all. It's the extra half-hour that they had to cut from the first film, padded out to two hours or so to make a sequel. With not even particularly brutal editing, KB2 could be distilled down into 30 minutes of relevant, interesting scenes and tacked on to KB1 to make that movie complete. Otherwise this bloated monstrosity is doomed to obscurity in the way that so many sequels so often are - due to over hype and audience expectations being too high.

Quentin Tarantino is to be commended for his movie efforts on the most part. However, KB2 is little more than self-indulgent twaddle wrapped up as a film and served up for consumption on the strength of its predecessor. It's destined to become one of those "I liked so-and-so, but the sequel was rubbish" type of deals. This is even more certain in the light of certain comments I read by Tarantino where he made a big deal of telling everyone that he was sparing no effort in the editing room. If this film is an example of his editing skills, I'd say he needs to be evicted from post-production facilities and the door locked securely behind him to ensure he can't get back in.
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Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Bill
lonicelee8 May 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I opted to see "LadyKillers" instead of this movie recently. But after a few people said it was so great, I decided to give it a chance. Wrong move!!! There were a few nice action sequences but it was like watching paint dry waiting for them. I'll go ahead and mention spoiler alert now since my comments may spoil it for those who enjoy this type of movie. I nodded off a few times so they might have answered the only question I had which was how Bill got the daughter from the pregnant mother he tried to kill. By the time they showed the daughter, I really didn't care. At least 30 minutes of useless dialog should have been removed. It even took an eternity for Bill to die. And why was Uma crying after striking the fatal blow??? It was about as dumb as her going after everyone with that sword even though she was an expert marksman with a gun. Although LadyKillers wasn't as funny as I had hoped, it was the better movie of the two. My recommendation is that you skip both of these and read a good book if you want some real entertainment.
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It transcends its genre and becomes Tarantino's most thoughtful and sophisticated work
PlutonicLove15 April 2004
In my brief, initial review of 'Kill Bill Vol. 1.' I made the regrettable mistake of dismissing it as exceedingly pleasing yet unsubstantial stylistic masturbation, lacking the profundity and characterizations of Tarantino's previous works. Rarely have I been happier to be proven wrong.

What once seemed like somewhat incoherent cinematic recklessness has, after viewing the second part of Mr. Tarantino's saga, revealed itself to be wild, imaginative and brilliant filmmaking. As a whole, 'Kill Bill' is utterly unified (not despite but because of the radical shift in tone), possesses a strong, dramatic ark, and, above all, stands as quite possibly the most passionate, loving tribute to cinema I have ever seen. While part one pays homage to Brian De Palma, Dario Argento and the Shaw Brothers, part two cites, among many others, Jean-Luc Godard, Sergio Leone, and Robert Siodmark.

But that's far from all.

In his critical essay 'The Cinema of the Cool', Kevin Murphy suggests that Tarantino must move on and grow up to fully realize his potential as a filmmaker. In my opinion, with this piece, he has done so. Those merely seeking the blood-splattered, broken-bone action of Vol. 1 will be severely disappointed by Vol. 2, which is infinitely more thoughtful, pondering the nature of violence, both in cause and effect. While the action in the first installment was great, comic book fun, here it becomes severely unpleasant, cringe inducing, and never without consequence. If anything, it reminded me of the great Akira Kurosawa's work. Remarkable.
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A bunch of rubbish with the worst anti-climax ever!
dave_taylor9992 July 2004
Warning: Spoilers
This really is a poor film in my opinion. I really can't understand all the hype. The fighting is poor, and doesn't know what it wants to be. Half-kung-fu, half-comedy, and competent in neither. If you want a decent kung-fu fight, watch a kung-fu film, not this commercialised rubbish.

And the story and characters are pathetic. The premise is simple, a long quest for vengeance blahblahblah. But this simple story is somehow spread out over about 4 hours of viewing time (and indeed, this review could easily apply to the first film). Quite how boring I found this, as well as the insertion of pointless scenes (e.g. Budd in the nightclub - why add it if I can't even empathize with the character?), is indescribable.

And Tarentino's directing, particularly certain camera styles, is also way below-par. If I had seen this film and none of his others, I wouldn't think he was a half-decent director. Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction fortunately make up for this, but I feel that those films contributed to the misplaced hype surrounding this film.

And finally, the ending, which can be summed up in one word: "WHAT?!". I was expecting something, anything, from the ending, maybe a huge fight or some half-decent dialogue. What did I get? Some pointless ranting and the worst 'move' ever. The Five-Finger-Majiggy. Not only is this outrageously unrealistic (take four steps, talk for ages, another step and, ooh, he's dead. What a shocker) but it really did let down the film and was a wasted opportunity. I can only assume the script-writer gave up and they had to hire monkies to finish it off.

In climax (unlike the film), a massive letdown. This film doesn't belong in a genre (some people for some unfathomable reason call it a thriller) and doesn't belong in a cinema as far as I'm concerned. I have enjoyed many films which have a lesser reputation far more than I enjoyed this.
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subtly disturbing
kiehlchristie24 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
So the second half of Tarantino's epic Kill Bill promised to be the pick me up the first required to stand up and be validated. It failed miserably in that attempt. Beware, there may be some spoilers.

Kill Bill 2 suffers from a shift in directorial tone so drastic that much of what Tarantino so effectively did in the first one was lost. In the second installment the audience is shown the softer side of Thurman's character. Instead of the spectacle of Thurman out slaughtering hundreds of people in enacting her heroic vengeance, we see her succumb to the psychological trauma that would naturally follow from what she had just participated in. The empowered woman of the first installment (which is a problem in itself: giving a woman a sword and implying that she's empowered) had all together fallen apart and assumed the role of the helpless and weak.

Kill Bill 2 lacks the elaborately sarcastic violence that made the first volume close to palatable. The second is filled with an overtly sadistic misogyny that is disturbing to watch, for example, Budd shooting Thurman in the chest with rock salt and burying her alive after threatening to fill her eye-sockets with mace. All of this in an uncomfortably close quarters with Thurman so that we can watch her suffer. Where the first movie had fun with its overblown violence; the second relishes in a much more terribly painful place.

Kill Bill 2, does however; include some instances of rich dialogue. There is a scene where Carradine and Thurman discuss superheroes and why it is that they are popular. The audience learns the appeal of superman, where he differs from other super heroes. Instead of a human that changes to an alter ego, superman is an alter ego that changes into a human. This conversation is reminiscent of Tarantino's older works, but is short-lived.

One of the problems with the Kill Bill movies may actually be with more than just the movie. Tarantino champions the middle-class white male perspective, and this perspective becomes visible if we consider the stereotypes adopted by each character. For example in the first movie we see a juxtaposition of two kinds of stereotypes imposed on Japanese women by American men. The first is the school girl, adopted by Oren Ishi's body guard, and the other is Oren herself, dressed in traditional Japanese garb for the final battle with Thurman. In the first installment, Tarantino effectively wrapped these stereotypes and issues into a sardonic and nearly humorous violence. In the second, Tarantino disregards that tone. So what the audience is left with is a plot that very subtly declares a deeper malaise beyond the movie. It exposes an unspoken evolution in American racism and sexism, and I believe it does so unintentionally.

Half of what made me feel ill when I left the movie theater last Sunday was the movie, and the other half was its being so popular
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Kill Bore Vol. 2
extravaluejotter1 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I couldn't watch it to the end. Well, I kind of knew what was going to happen anyway. Quentin Tarantino was going to meander around, alternating pointless violence with hip dialogue until Uma Thurman's character finally got her revenge. Or not. To be honest I really didn't care if Beatrix set up home with Bill and they baked cookies together forever instead of her killing him.

Everything that was wrong with the first movie is wrong with this one in spades, despite the contributions of some talented actors and some fine cinematography. Overlong, derivative and self-indulgent, Quentin Tarantino's homage to world cinema mediocrity really knows how to outstay its welcome.

I honestly hope that Tarantino has another film like "Reservoir Dogs" or "Jackie Brown" in him. It would be tragic if the last films he ever made were as pointlessly bad as "Kill Bill" 1 & 2.
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The Moose Hole - Review of Kill Bill (Volume II)
JAKastner27 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
`Revenge is a dish best served cold.'

When we last left off, Quentin Tarantino has re-emerged onto the Hollywood scene for the first time in six years with not just one but two films to be released into theaters to an overwhelmingly awaiting cult audience. But not everyone was especially happy with the decision of both Tarantino and his distributor, Miramax Pictures, to split the tale of The Bride in two. There were some in the vast assortment of captious movie-goers that took this as a sign of continued greed amongst the `Hollywood elite' in that the decision of splitting the film into two parts was done to get the loyal fans to shell-out double the normal ticket price for essentially one film. Granted, in the end, that turned out not to be the case, as the film would actually be five hours in length and thus be deemed too long to be taken all at once, but the issue still remained whether the rest of Hollywood would follow in the foot-steps of Kill Bill and spark a brand new trend, only this time with less honorable then Tarantino did. That is still to be seen and perhaps that argument is a bit overzealous . In this situation, one shouldn't question what could happen in the future but whether or not the primary influence, namely Kill Bill, did what it claimed it would accomplish, by delivering movie-goers ultimate satisfaction for dollar.

Kill Bill (Volume II) is the second, and possibly final, installment of the story that centers on a former member of a group of assassins who seeks revenge for the actions done on to her by her former colleagues. For those unfamiliar with the first installment, here is a slight recap of previous events:

A woman known only as The Bride has waken up from a four year comma after her former boss Bill left her for dead on the day of her wedding killing her fiancé, the wedding party and her unborn child. Unfortunately for the skilled assassin, he made one big mistake: he failed to kill her. Now that she has awakened from her living slumber, The Bride will travel the world picking off her attempted killers one by one including the mysterious Bill. First up on her list is O-Ren Ishi, aka Cottonmouth, and her group of Japanese underground assassins and then Vernita Green, aka Copperhead. Upon completing the task of killing her first two targets, The Bride continues on her rampage determined to kill everyone on her list, all the way to Bill.

The second installment picks up basically where the first one left off, leaving The Bride heading to her next target, Budd (aka Sidewinder), who happens to be the run-down and vastly inferior brother of Bill himself. But, for at least a few moments, Budd gets the upper-hand on the film's lead assassin by placing her in a coffin and burring her alive. In the time it takes her to escape, the audience is informed on the vast training The Bride took in order to become the superior apache she is today. Upon escaping the make-shift grave, The Bride duels with her contemporary rival, Elle Driver (aka California Mountain Snake), who not only killed Pai Mai but has her eyes set on The Bride herself. The final lag of her journey brings her to the home of Bill himself and along with him comes a little surprise: her daughter. The story for Kill Bill (Volume II) is quite arguably vastly superior to the one written up for the first installment in that this one deals not so much with action but dialogue and meanings discovered behind actions made by characters throughout this film as well as the previous installment. Once again Tarantino demonstrates his remarkable filmmaking skills by back-tracking the story at precise moments that by doing so will explain actions yet to come. Few writers can pull such an effect successful and Tarantino does so brilliantly.

As was said with the previous installment, a relative bunch of low-profile actors and actresses make up one of the better casts of the year for this film, but this time around we introduced to a slightly different lot from the last film. Michael Madsen gives a dead-on (no pun intended) performance as Budd, a run-down and subjacent version of his former self now that he is no longer in the hit-man business. Madsen gives a sense that the character really contemplates on what he has done and whether or not he feels remorse for those actions but at the same time showcases the scoundrel that still lives within him. Daryl Hannah is quite intriguing as Elle Driver, clearly the most ruthless and baneful character in the film series. The only problem with her role was the dreadfully over-the-top performance given when her character's eye was plucked out. Granted having one's eye plucked out isn't a pleasant manner but what Hannah presented on screen was unconvincing and quite annoying after some time. Uma Thurman's role in the second installment can't be complimented more then her role in the first . She gives an absolutely brilliant, witty, and exhilarating performance that works every moment she is on screen. And David Carradine, best known for his Kung Fu television series, gives a `sweet', vibrant, and utterly perfect performance as the title character, Bill. He shines in every scenes he is presented in and works exceedingly well with Uma Thurman . There isn't much to say other then `Bravo'!

Overall, Kill Bill plays out much like the concept of revenge itself - actions and instincts engulf us at first, but as time goes on and the journey rampages toward its ultimate conclusion, truth and meaning quickly take over. Where Tarantino starts off with a bang, he rightfully finishes off with a shock to our system - maturity and philosophical contemplation on the subject of revenge and what it means for those involved. Those who were truly engulfed by the blood and gut spilling actions of the first film will be greatly disappointed by the second installment unless you are one of those geeks who enjoy dialogue far more then comical violence, which may not be too many. But if there is even just a few then that will demonstrate the true essence of maturity amongst the movie-going public. Despite a pacing that made the feature feel a tad longer then was probably necessary, Kill Bill (Volume II) serves as a fitting conclusion to Quentin Tarantino's near perfect masterpiece . a masterpiece that may take quite some time to surpass but if the young filmmaker keeps putting out work like his previous films, his cult audience is more then willing to wait.
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JonSnowsMother3 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
The movie wasn't bad and i am not saying you should avoid it. But after a thrilling and great first movie i was expecting this to be just as good but even though Tarantino did a good job and some impressive acting by Uma Thurman. What the film lacks is the poor storyline. If you've seen the first film you will realise the lack of fights which was shocking enough.

Like i said earlier the film has a weak storyline and the only way to make it better is a good screenplay and even though it starts off quite good it turns poor near the end.

One thing the movie did do very well was the acting Uma Thurman and David Carradine give good strong performances. One problem with the movie is a big twist happens near the end and it is poorly done for such an important scene. This film isn't bad just that if you enjoyed the first film don't get so excited but i am sure most big Tarantino fans will enjoy it.
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Great ending to a brilliant epic
benturkalj7 October 2005
Kill Bill Vol 2. is an awesome conclusion to a great movie double. If you liked the first one, you should definitely get a kick out of seeing the remaining members of the viper squad killed.

This is more like a Tarantino of old, and has all of the witty dialog we have come to expect from the modern master. There's a great deal of it to, but that is not to say that there aren't any great fights in this. If anything, the battles are just as enjoyable here, though they are certainly more concise.

Everything about this film is fantastic. The acting is great from everyone, particularly Madsen and Carradine. The characters have a load of depth, much more then the first part, and even the lesser known characters will be remembered. The score is up to the usual high standard, with some really cool references to some other classic films by a certain Western Director.

If you are able, it is best to watch the two flicks back to back: both are easily some of the best to come out in modern times. An instant classic.
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lissotrichous15 September 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Lamest sequel ever!

I kind of liked Kill Bill 1, but this ruined all of it.

It didn't have the same over-the-top stylization, humor, anything original.

It'll be on Lifetime forever, cuz it's all soap opera drama about the cliché man-who-done-her-wrong; "I told you it was your baby (boo-hoo, why didn't you believe me when I said you were the only one)?" I was not expecting baby-mama drama, and a lengthy girl-power sermon.

How does anyone like this movie???

It's too corny for guys, yet too violent for girls. It tries to please everybody, but that just tells you what you should have already known : Tarantino's a no-talent sell-out brown-noser.
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Much ado about nothing...
derboiler18 August 2004 the title of a Shakespearian comedy. This movie reflects it. There's a lot of blabla but without any deeper meaning. It is Tarantino style dialogue which is meant to sound cool. The only problem is that there's too much of it. This movie lacks of everything the first movie had: Suspense, good action and interesting ideas like i.e. the anime part. On the other hand it has everything the first didn't need: Lots of gibberish dialogue which prolongs the movie endlessly. It all would have been a great 3 hour movie if u packed the first and second part together. If you get to rent the dvd I would recommend watching the deleted scene. This scene contains what everybody was waiting for and what Kill Bill Vol.2 should have been like.

I gave the first part a 10/10. The second part gets only 5/10. Mildly entertaining.

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Exercise in Self-Indulgence
bighand99-125 April 2004
All I have to say is WOW, what a big let down. After loving the first Kill Bill, i went into this with high hopes. Knowing it couldn't have been better that Vol. 1, i wasn't expecting the best. But i had no idea it could be this bad. The film, although not exactly horrible, is by far the worst Tarantino movie i have ever seen. The dialogue, pacing, and acting all work together to solidify this movie has one of the biggest letdowns in film history (far behind the matrix revolutions, of course). This movie seems like pure self-indulgence on Quentin Tarantino's part. He draws out scenes to the point where you want to shot yourself. Now, i'm not saying it is horrible, i really enjoyed about 10 to 20 percent of it. But the rest is horribly written crap. None of the characters can get a whole sentence out before they pause 4 or 5 times to let the audience catch up to the previous three words they just said. Don't even get me started on the overrated David Carradine. I don't know how anybody thought he was good in this film. Maybe good for David Carradine, but not good for any other legitimate actor. Uma did ok, but her line delivery wasn't anything to cheer about. Michael Madsen was tolerable as was Darryl Hannah, until Quentin decided to have her spat out that crap about the black mamba. I think Quentin thinks that if he draws out a scene 5 minutes longer than it is supposed to be with a monologue about snakes or comic books he is supposed to be considered brilliant. Surprisingly that is what everyone is saying, but i found it be the opposite. Alright, i am done ranting about this film. Go see it if you haven't yet and please take note of what i am saying. Oh and the cinematography and camera angles are good, as is the music. There is the 10 to 20%
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sound, fury and absolutely nothing else; I'm embarrassed to have contributed to its gross takings
t-h-flint18 January 2006
Everyone is anxious to underline how clever Tarantino is at paying homage to a broad range of cinematic influences. Whilst I'm sure that these references must satisfy those members of the audience who recognise them, they wholly fail to make up for the misery suffered by those who don't. Neither Kill Bill film has anything else to redeem it. The dialogue is woeful throughout, retaining all the style but none of the substance of Pulp Fiction or Reservoir Dogs. The performances are two-dimensional and completely un-involving, although much of the blame for that must fall on Tarantino for having penned such feeble characters. Because you don't care about anyone on screen, the violence appears aimless and gratuitous. But the worst thing about these films is that the "Tarantino" badge seems to be enough for some to excuse these terminal flaws, where any other director would be completely torn to pieces. Those of us who believe that film-making should be about involving an audience and telling a story can only hope that the aura of infallibility that surrounds the man is dissipated rapidly after these spineless and inept films. The tragedy is that they will probably only feed the hype. Whatever the fans say, style can never survive without substance; thankfully we can be sure that this meaningless rubbish will disappear into the mists of time, and the sooner the better.
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Boring - SPOILERS when it says (SPOILERS)
jdish17 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Its been a while since i watched a movie in the theatres that i actually looked at my watch as much as i watched the movie. kill bill vol 1 was an actual decent movie for tarantino, it had laughs, great fight scenes and some decent dialogue. and i don't even like him that much. so obviously i came into kill bill vol 2 expecting to be blown away by great effects, great fight scenes, and good dialogue. well the only thing i got was DIALOGUE. it was like i was watching a woody allen movie without the humor. honestly there were some parts that i enjoyed but there was too much story telling. and another thing is that in the first one she had such a hard time getting to the people she wanted to kill and then the scenes were creative and well made.

in this one (SPOILERS) she doesn't even kill one of the people on her list and the fight scene with elle driver had little fighting and although the ending was creative it wasn't pleasing. and finally the death of bill was awful, we never even got to see this man fight he just dies by some BS technique. what a bore-fest 3/10
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Worst piece of crap in the history of Hollywood.
KBGuthrie23 April 2004
I wish I knew the words that could convey my hatred of this second installment. All I can say, is that if you liked the first movie, just walk away from the second movie. Of the 2+ hours I sat in that chair, I'd say perhaps 10 minutes of it was worth my time.

That may be generous. I'm not sure it was that good.

I'm seeking Hypnotherapy to see if I can have that thing expunged from my long term memory.
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Master and student should not reverse roles
winner5526 June 2006
Kill Bill I was a delightful surprise, living up to its hype as Tarantino's comic-tinged homage to Chinese and Japanese action-genre films. I could easily imagine all the old directors from Toei Studios having a blast watching Tarantino's final sword-fight scene, a loving imitation of all their samurai reincarnation or Shogun's Ninja films. Then Tarantino had to go and release this pap and spoil everything.

There are two principle problems with this film. First, Tarantino decided he didn't want to do genre any more. KBII is a "serious" film, about such weighty topics as guilt and redemption and love and death and all those other philosophical topics Woody Allen used to poke fun at before he decided to become a "serious" filmmaker, too.

Well, maybe Tarantino could have pulled that off - he didn't do so bad in Pulp Fiction - but he makes what for me is one of those mistakes a film fan can not forgive another film fan for making: he trivializes his predecessors.

Although this film has a large chunk at the beginning paying tribute to the old Shaw Bros. studio (which the first film promised but never got around to), the principle references in this reference-laden film are to the films of Sam Peckinpah and Sergio Leone. And unfortunately, in deciding to make a "serious" film, in order to deal with these references, Tarantino decides that Peckinpah and Leone made typical genre films (i.e., not "serious" films), and that therefore it was up to a better director (himself) to make a "serious" film from their raw materials.

Well, here's the news, Quentin. The Wild Bunch is the American version of Homer's Iliad, and all you've managed to come up with is a Hallmark greeting card that doesn't rhyme. Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West is the Cistine Chapel of a modern Michaelangelo, and all you've given us here is a color-by-numbers Norman Rockwell copy.

What in the name of heaven could Tarantino have been thinking of by trying to "out-serious" directors we know perfectly well he admires?What we get here are cartoon versions of moments from Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia and Once Upon a Time in the West. And that stolen Ennio Morricone music! sure it worked in KBI, because that was homage to Asian genre films and Asian genre films did that sort of thing all the time; but if you're going to get serious, it's time to get original; and, for heaven's sake, Morricone is still alive, I'm sure he'd have been glad to write a new score.

Finally, I should mention an obvious influence on this film that Tarantino would probably not want mentioned - the films of the Coen Brothers. Although they started earlier than Tarantino, they are still technically of the same generation as he. I'm not talking plagiarism - the Coens have done their share of "homaging" with and without credit to the originals. But Tarantino can't afford to try to "out-serious' filmmakers still making films. Especially since the Coens know how to do an homage with respect.

What Tarantino ends up with here is a bunch of scenes that keep banging into each other like box-cars on a (slowly) derailing train. Better it wasn't made. Skip it.
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