Yeah, I suck. I should trade in my "I am Tarantino's bitch" card. I finally saw Kill Bill 1 and 2 this weekend with Mark and Jeff. And I have to say, that I still think that the man's at the peak of his game.
While Kill Bill 1 is more violent and gratuitous, I think it's because the movie is an homage to the late-night Saturday Kung Fu flicks that I'd watch as a family.
The reason we watched those movies is because they were the only things on TV showing Chinese people in a cool way. "Hey look! We gotta watch Game of Death! It's got Chinese people and they're not saying, 'Ancient Chinese Secret!'"
But I digress. I do like KB2 a bit more for the heart and soul behind it. It's not as violent and gory as KB1, and David Carradine rocks as Bill. He's got an old-school, mentor/lover/fucked-up teacher vibe that's just plain wonderful. I can see how The Bride fell for, loved and left him. As well as how he has a hold over Elle Driver and the rest of the Deadly Viper assassination Squad.
I can't picture Warren Beatty or Kevin Costner in it (actually I can, and it sucks).
The movie (because I really don't think that you can call them two movies) has a lot of heart to it in my mind -- but it really shows up on the second half.
The one flaw with KB1 is that without the story from KB2, it's hard for most people to like that movie. Frankly, I saw KB1 as more of the chop-socky tribute to spaghetti westerns and all the films Tarantino probably saw as a child. A lot of the late night Kung Fu flicks I remember more for the gore and violence, not the plot.
But I think that it works in a funny way. Most people would be amazed, horrified and drawn in by the gore -- and right before you get numb from the violence, there's the emotional core of the film to suck you back in.
Even though I saw both of them together, I almost want the movie to be released on DVD stitched together as one. It'd be more than four hours -- but hell, I saw through Return of the King four times (and still enjoyed it). Storywise, it might help people that were put off by KB1. It's hard for me to completely judge the movie, or either movie for that matter, knowing that it's supposed to be one film that was chopped into two flicks.
Not to mention, his choice in music still rocks. The RZA scored KB1 well, and Rodriguez also did a nice job. Finding the Japanese group the 5,6,7,8's was really awesome. I've never heard them before, but they were really cool. I've been singing to myself, "I talk like Jayne Mansfield."