Quentin Tarantino Defends Inglourious Basterds
08.18.09 by BJSprecher
With the opening of Inglourious Basterds only a few days away, Quentin Tarantino fans will once again be able to get their fix of excessive violence and snappy dialogue, this time in the form of Nazi-hunting Jewish "scalp hunters." While Tarantino recently said that he plans to retire at 60 to become "a man of letters," as of right now he's still a filmmaker and one of his own best promoters.
In a recent interview, Tarantino said that "revenge" is the essential ingredient that earns Inglourious Basterds a special place among WWII movies.
Revenge isn't usually an element of World War II films — there may be a hint of it, but it's not usually what they are about. I think that's what makes this movie rather unique.
It's the fun of the Jews getting revenge against Nazis — I've seen the other story ad nauseum.
Tarantino defended his extensive use of subtitles and dismissed other movies (Tom Cruise's WWII action movie, Valkyrie, comes to mind) in which foreign characters speak English.
I think the other style — with everybody either speaking English, or Germans speaking English with a German accent — those are the things that made World War II movies for the last couple of generations old-fashioned.
Often criticized in the past for the amount of excessive violence in his movies, Tarantino refused to apologize for it and said that he likes to "squirm" in movies.
I will never feel squeamish about my own movies, because I know them and I know how we achieved the effects.
As for the scalping — those guys are already dead, it's about taking mementoes.
When asked about working with Brad Pitt, who stars in the movie as Lt. Aldo Raine, the Nazi-hunter recruiter, Tarantino said, "It was kind of a love affair." Tarantino explained that Pitt remained in character there entire time he was on set, so it was like being around one of his own creations all day.