Inglourious Basterds

Film Review by Michael Lawson | 25 Nov 2009
  • Inglorious Basterds
Film title: Inglourious Basterds
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Starring: Brad Pitt, Christoph Waltz, Mélanie Laurent
Release date: December 7 2009
Certificate: 18

Tarantino’s superb genre pastiche is the cinematic equivalent of Woody Guthrie’s guitar case: a defiant, aggressive and life-affirming two-fingered salute to fascism. After the overblown Kill Bill and indulgent Death Proof, QT is back doing what he does best and possibly better than he’s done it before: this confirms his status as American cinema’s most exciting formalist, a lover of cinema, life, and most importantly, his audience. The five-chapter structure fleshes out a truly three-dimensional cast of characters (Waltz magnetically embodies evil: the best movie villain of the decade!) and runs the gamut of WWII film scenarios, at times excruciatingly suspenseful and genuinely unpredictable. Is the film in bad taste? Absolutely, but as Mel Brooks and Chris Morris have frequently shown, bad taste can be a powerful tool, and given this year's success of the BNP and a worrying acceptance of prejudice in pop culture and society, the UK box-office success of such a ferociously anti-Nazi fantasia must be applauded. [Michael Gillespie]