Kill Bill -- Vol. 2
Even among Quentin Tarantino's fans, whose fawning stops just short of licking his buttocks in public, the response to splitting "Kill Bill" into two volumes released six months apart was met with the kind of skepticism usually reserved for infomercials and predictions of a Cubs World Series appearance.
With the release of "Kill Bill: Vol. 2", it's clear that the Miramax marketing monkeys have indeed put one over on filmgoers. Tarantino has so little material with which to construct a second film that the result is paced slower than C-Span on Sunday. Given Tarantino's worship of Uma Thurman, the entire foray may be the most overblown attempt to get into a woman's pants since the invasion of Troy.
Having already dispatched with Vernita Green (Vivica A. Fox) and O-Ren Ishii (Lucy Liu), The Bride (Uma Thurman) continues her quest to avenge the near-death wedding rehearsal fiasco orchestrated by her former boss, Bill (David Carradine). Standing in the way of a final showdown are Budd (Michael Madsen) and Elle Driver (Daryl Hannah). Like "Pulp Fiction," the story is told out of sequence, but here it's a liability along the lines of having Joe Eszterhas tied to your leg. There's only one fight scene longer than a stab and the characters drawl more inane, slow dialogue than bums spending the night in a detox cell.
Wasting time is the rule, not the exception. The simple fact that Budd lives in a mobile home should be enough to convey the point that his life is in the dumper, but Tarantino treats us to a useless scene in an empty strip club to drive the message home - 10 minutes of my life I'll never recover. Almost every dialogue sequence is doubled through interminable pauses and lingering camera shots. We're also treated to a lengthy recounting of the wedding rehearsal, a scene that is pointless plot-wise and serves only to give Samuel L. Jackson a cameo. It becomes painfully obvious after less than fifteen minutes that "Kill Bill: Vol. 2" needed more editing than Jayson Blair. It's like Tarantino is paying homage to himself.
Watching this film is like watching the deleted scenes from a "Kill Bill" DVD that doesn't exist. Most of them would be far more interesting as CD-ROM fodder or as filler on a "Kill Bill" extended cut with Tarantino commenting that "here's a scene I really liked but just couldn't use." "Kill Bill: Vol. 2" reminds me of a history paper I once wrote where I increased the font size from 8-point to 16-point, thereby turning a crappy six page paper into a crappy twelve page one.
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