The Hateful Eight
No doubt about it that this is a Quentin Tarantino film. Not only in terms of over-top-violence, but also the humor and style. However, unlike his more recent outings, this film was actually smaller in scope but yet more immediately entertaining. But then it also presents another dilemma in that it was shallow at its core. Essentially, it boiled down to being an Agatha Christie-esque Taranatino-styled Western whodunnit, all mystery and thriller without any sort of central theme. It would make a great stage play in the vein of Mousetrap, but The Crucible this ain't.
Although by golly, the score was seriously amazing as was the gorgeous cinematography. And for once, at this stage, I can safely say that Ennio Morricone deserve to get the Oscar for this utterly visceral work. The score was a palpable creature onto itself throughout the film and it really set the tone, and gave the film an almost frightening vibe - Roman Polanski's Rosemary Baby kept springing to mind throughout.
Similarly, Robert Richardson's lensing was superb. The use of Ultra Panavision 70 and 65mm film really gave this bottleneck story a sense of intimacy and space although most of the film was set in just one room. Richardson definitely have a shot at the Oscars here.
Despite a flawed second act that felt rushed through and was stylistically different from the first act, this was a good whodunnit screenplay. So it was surprising that Tarantino did not get any love from the Academy this year. Not even at least for Best Original Screenplay. I guess his spot must have been taken by the scribes of Straight Outta Compton.
Jennifer Jason Leigh, on the other hand, absolutely deserved her nomination for Best Supporting Actress. She was a total standout and the best player of the bunch! Barely recognisable and bordering of psychopathic, she was a hoot to watch from start to finish. Whereas others like Samuel L Jackson was interesting in the beginning and then became farcial and ended up boring. The rest of the hateful eight were rather one-dimensional and flat. Even at the big reveal they still seemed like caricatures. Bruce Dern was the only one that really got interesting.
The Hateful Eight was a Quentin Tarantino film through-and-through albeit one of his lighter fares but surprisingly entertaining nonetheless.