Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Film Intuition's August Poll Results: What Is Quentin Tarantino's Best Directorial Effort?

Before QT Produced His
Inglorious Basterds

We Asked The Question:

"In anticipation of his newest release--
considering the following films, which movie would you select as Quentin Tarantino's finest directorial achievement so far?"

The Choices:
(in chronological order)

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MovieBlips: vote it up!

The Results:

Pulp Fiction 37%
Kill Bill: Vol. 1 24%
Reservoir Dogs 19%
Jackie Brown 14%
Kill Bill: Vol. 2 4%

Jen's Take

When the poll began at the start of August, Kill Bill: Vol. 1 had an enormous lead and it seemed like it's greatest rival would be Reservoir Dogs but the sword turned as the month went on, making it a three way race between winner Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and Reservoir Dogs.

I was surprised to see Jackie Brown pick up some momentum but then again, I've always found the underrated film to be his most accessible work for all generations and QT has even gone on to acknowledge that he has so many mothers come up to him and say, "My kid loves ____ but I love Jackie Brown." This reviewer's mother would probably agree although she is partial to Kill Bill as well so much that when a surprise advanced screening of Vol. 2 popped up on Easter Sunday, I asked her to come along as my guest. Films first, food second is our family's motto!

I'm a bit stunned over the paltry 4% vote given to Kill Bill: Vol. 2 but grant that it is missing the action-packed sequences of the first including that final masterful--man, nearly hour long showdown-- as Uma Thurman takes on endless villains including my personal favorite, Go-Go Yubari and not just because she has my hairstyle.

I still feel that Pulp Fiction is one of the greatest films of the '90s and I'd have to agree with it being Tarantino's best especially because it's a wonderful gateway movie for film buffs to study what it was about it that made it so unique including breaking the traditional Syd Field preached three-act screenplay structure and using all of the films he'd seen before him as his own version of film school. Instead of the "film school generation," the "film geek generation" was born and suddenly people realized they could become self-taught minus the student loans by analyzing his influences especially the French New Wave which became a new obsession of mine after viewing Quentin's stunning Fiction.

Although we had to suffer endless copycat filmmakers in the '90s as well as QT's over-exposure as he spread himself far too thin. However, the demand was there and so was QT which perhaps led to his decision to adapt an Elmore Leonard novel as his feature-length follow-up film since-- with so much success so soon-- the pressure has to be insane. Yet to his credit and our great amazement, he continued to produce truly excellent works.

While they were indeed controversial as I still remember the Spike Lee/QT battle over Jackie Brown (and can see and appreciate both sides) and a few ensemble projects including his post-Fiction uneven Four Rooms and his superior half of Grindhouse with Death Proof (that I feel I'm the only person on the planet who genuinely dug).

However, when he unleashed the opus of Kill Bill onto masses, a whole new younger generation felt the same thrill we'd experienced with Fiction and hopefully began turning towards the Criterion Collection and Dragon Dynasty DVDs to discover just which movies had led to the work that introduced us to a memorable Bride who (unlike Francois Truffaut's) did not wear black but that awesome yellow suit to exact bloody revenge.

Whether you love him or hate him or hate or love his movies, his influences and the films he's influenced by are a vital part of our cinematic landscape and American moviemaking, in my opinion, has become all the better for it.

Thank you for making this our most successful and popular poll so far-- September's topic will be announced soon.

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