A/V Room









Kill Bill - US reaction

Compiled by: Jack Foley

CRITICS across America seemed to delight in the return of Quentin Tarantino to the form approaching his early, breakthrough work. Hence, Kill Bill has drawn as many favourable reviews in America, as it has in the UK.

Entertainment Weekly leads the way, declaring that ‘Kill Bill may have little on its mind besides pop extravagance, yet you can feel the movie tracing a transition in the world - from West to East, from male to female rule’.

JoBlo’s Movie Emporium, meanwhile, stated it is ‘an inventive, exciting, ballsy, violent, entertaining, stylized and brilliant’.

Village Voice opined that it is ‘fun and smart, but undeniably thin’, while Ebert and Roeper hailed it as ‘the ultimate movie for kung-fu drive-in geeks...’.

Glowing, too, was Newsday, which felt that it is 'an eye-popping, blood-soaked, ingeniously choreographed thriller and Hong Kong homage that ultimately adds up to ... not much'.

While the Chicago Tribune declared that it is 'the most gorgeous B-movie ever made'.

CNN, meanwhile, opined that 'the violence, blood levels - and just plain cheesy gore - in this film are extreme, but Tarantino's sharp dialogue and expert editing leaves you breathless'.

While the Chicago Sun-Times felt that 'Kill Bill: Volume 1 shows Quentin Tarantino so effortlessly and brilliantly in command of his technique that he reminds me of a virtuoso violinist racing through Flight of the Bumble Bee ..."

Of the negative notices, one of the most vitriolic has to rate as Slant Magazine, which wrote that ‘Kill Bill: Volume 1 is essentially a pop culture wanker’s failed multimedia experiment, a vacuous junk heap of dorky gags and riffs, violent anime and offensive slapstick’.

While the Los Angeles Times felt that 'for the first time in Tarantino's filmmaking career, the written story - both in word and development - proves the least interesting part of the whole equation'.

The New York Daily News, meanwhile, felt that 'there's a lot to admire in Kill Bill, and a lot that should have been lopped off like the arms and legs and scalps that go flying'.

While the San Francisco Chronicle went a little worse, stating that 'it boggles the mind that after six years of silence, all Tarantino has to offer is this garbage'.

The positives return with the Detroit Free Press, however, which observed that 'Vol. 1 is a shot of pure adrenalin on celluloid, headed for the heart and the gut, not the head'.

While the New York Post wrote that it is 'a maddeningly uneven spaghetti Eastern that's well worth seeing for his technical mastery, even as it challenges you with the geeky auteur's boundless self-indulgence'.

And the Toronto Star concluded that 'not only is this the work of a major and vital talent in full bloom, it's the most thrillingly entertaining American movie so far this year'.

The final word, however, goes to the Washington Post, which declared that Kill Bill: Volume One 'has matched, if not eclipsed, the power and scope of 1994's Pulp Fiction'.

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