“You only need to hang mean bastards, but mean bastards you need to hang.”
Ambitious and pretentious in equal measure, Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight handholds and spoon-feeds his vision of a modern spaghetti western, with predictably violent results.
Tarantino has openly stated his desire to take his latest project into theatres and it seems born for the stage. The exterior scenes lend themselves to the screen, allowing for the beautiful disaster to swirl around the characters, and ensnare them to the interiors. The interiors however are threefold, stagecoach, stables and cabin, and would all make perfect stage sets.
It is not only the locations but Tarantino’s script that will also fit the stage. People move in straight lines, crossing and recrossing interior parallels, floating from background to foreground with a graceful ease.
Thankfully however, The Hateful Eight came to the screen first, allowing power, precision and a perfectly familiar collection of actors to inhabit Tarantino’s script. Dern and Jackson’s aged race relations flicker with an untamed rage whilst Roth’s discussions of justice with Russell and Jason Leigh are a civilised precursor to the removal of such civility later in the picture.
The Hateful Eight’s first act simmers with a bubbling pressure in the hotpot haberdashery, reflected by the swirling snowstorm; only getting worse before it gets better. Tarantino’s inclusion of an intermission comes at the perfect moment, releasing a deluge of accumulated tension, allowing the audience to recover and reflect before the rip-roaring second act.
This is all tied up by Ennio Morricone’s masterful score. Perfectly performed, Morricone’s score sets the scene in the overture and clears the path for the action to flow into. The Hateful Eight is truly given its weight, depth and atmosphere by its score and the rich and expansive Ultra Panavision 70mm screening, and is a truly unique experience.
Header courtesy of hdwallpapers and image courtesy of hitflix respectively.