Infinite Respawncast – The Hateful Eight

Chris and Dylan lock themselves in a haberdashery to hash out some discussion on The Hateful Eight – Quentin Tarantino’s eighth film. Chris thought Demian Bichir was Edward Norton, which is a crazy thing to think, but he did it anyways. Meanwhile, Dylan tells Chris all about Star Wars box office records, what film Tarantino really liked this year, which band did a theme song for Spectre, and can’t explain why Christopher Nolan’s next film is a WWII film. There are a handful of new releases, most notably Bone Tomahawk. Then Chris talks about Joy and Point Break, while Dylan explains his feelings on Making a Murderer. The show, not the act. Next week we’re back with the first of two end of the year podcasts that we are doing. It is very difficult for it not to be extremely compelling.

Show Notes:

(2:12) The Hateful Eight Review
(29:14) The Hateful Eight Spoilers
(50:50) Tarantino really liked Mad Max: Fury Road
(53:01) Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens is still destroying the box office and its records
(55:07) New Releases
(61:45) Radiohead did a theme song for Spectre for some reason, and then released it.
(64:01) Christopher Nolan is doing a WWII film, because why not? That genre hasn’t been done to death.
(65:51) Joy
(73:59) Making a Murderer
(78:16) Point Break
(85:00) Closing Comments including what we’re doing next week. Hint: It’s End of the Year time.

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Kingsman The Secret Service Review

Matthew Vaughn seems to be a fan of comic books. And violence. And crass humour. And subverting old cinema tropes. But I after seeing Kingsman: The Secret Service, I don’t think I mind all that much. Vaughn isn’t a stranger to the comic book film. After Kick-Ass, X-Men: First Class, and Stardust, he’s shown how well his kinetic style can work in the comic universe. He knows how ridiculous it all is. Nothing is taken too seriously and he thankfully recognizes how absurd his films are. Valentines Day weekend might seem like a weird weekend to release it, but with how female centric the holiday seems to be, Kingsman is the perfect counter-programming to the equally ridiculous sounding, 50 Shades of Grey.  Continue reading

Django Unchained Showcases Tarantino’s Newfound Fascination with Christoph Waltz, if Little Else

Django Unchained Theatrical Poster

Django Unchained Theatrical Poster

TitleDjango Unchained
Genre(s) Action, Drama, Western
Director(s)Quentin Tarantino
Release Year2012
Rotten Tomatoes: 88%

Quentin Tarantino’s career has thus far been one punctuated by numerous highs and very few noticeable lows; a man who has seemingly never struggled to get what he wants in the industry he so enthusiastically inhabits. Some will call him a genius in the way he essentially makes new tapestries out of old, cherished rugs, while others will categorize him as a spoiled brat whose prestige and success have clouded his ability to conjure up anything fresh. Whatever the stance, it’s safe to say that Tarantino films have a certain style to them, running through nearly every technical facet and often resulting in characteristically old-school and exploitative ingredients coming together as a more polished and professional piece; 2009’s Inglourious Basterds, a tale of personal and cultural retribution or vendetta, showcased a concise balance of excess and weight and illustrated a slightly more mature auteur behind the camera. Why is it then that Django Unchained, the latest taboo-laden vehicle from this self-professed exploitation film enthusiast, feel like such an ultimately minor and undistinguished work, despite its unquestionably entertaining moments and sequences?

Taking place in 1858 in the sunny plains and winter-struck mountains of the deep American South, Django Unchained is, all in all, a fairly straightforward tale of retribution and bloody vengeance. Through an effective and appropriately old-fashioned opening montage, we are introduced to Django (Jamie Foxx), a slave held by conjoined shackles, roaming the frigid Texan countryside with his fellow men and their traders. Upon reaching the woods, the caravan runs into a lone man, dentist and bounty hunter King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), who inquires about Django against his owners’ wishes. Not content with backing down, he humorously disposes of the men and takes Django with him on a quest to hunt down multiple slavers and collect their bounty; in return for his help and sacrifices, Schultz promises to help him track down his wife, Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), from the clutches of the extravagant Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio). While its revisionist nature and headstrong dive into the taboo reeks of Tarantino’s signature pastiche, the resulting story is a surprisingly uninvolving and detached affair, in part due to a selection of poor characters. Take Broomhilda for example; while we’re briefly made aware of her long-term relationship with our titular hero, her development as a character essentially starts and stops there, instead being substituted with copious scenes of torture that are meant to make us feel empathy. They undoubtedly do, yet we never get a better glimpse at who she is, being essentially reduced to a damsel in distress and nothing more. It’s a considerable disappointment given Tarantino’s usual array of strong and empowered female characters and, as a result, many of their scenes of suffering and pain, while unmistakably brutal and unflinching, are only measured in winces. 

Check out the rest of the review after the jump.