I have always been a big fan of Quentin Tarantino. Not only is his visual style unique, but the dialogue of his characters is always so different from what your’e used to seeing in a movie. His characters will often sit around and talk small talk forever, yet I am so caught up in the amusing dialogue that I really enjoy it. That isn’t something every director can do.
The Hateful Eight stars Kurt Russell as John “the Hangman” Ruth, a bounty hunter on his way to Red Rock, Wyoming to claim a bounty on the notorious outlaw Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh),whom he has captured. Kurt Russell picks up two men looking for a lift along his journey. The first is Major Marquis Warren, a civil war veteran turned bounty hunter played by Samuel L. Jackson. The second is Chris Mannix, the new sheriff of Red Rock played by Walton Goggins.
These characters eventually arrive at a lodge called Minnie’s Haberdashery, where we meet even more oddball people. Due to the snowstorm outside, our entire cast is trapped together in this lodge. We soon learn that not all these characters are here by chance, and that some intend on breaking free the outlaw Daisy Domergue.
To my surprise The Hateful Eight has this mystery element to it. Sam Jackson acts almost like a detective in a whodunit scenario. I found myself having the most fun with the film right around this part. Attempting to deduce who the murderer could be was half the fun, it made me feel even more . Towards the end of the film when I thought I had it all figured out, I was still wrong. I wouldn’t say the true murderer came as a shock, but rather a interesting surprise.
The Hateful Eight has this looming social relevancy towards racial inequality. In usual Tarantino fashion, this is done in a blunt and forward way. Many characters take racial shots at Sam Jackson’s character, and he usually fires back with something equally witty. I cannot help but feel Tarantino included this to reflect our current culture. An action I feel was both necessary and clever.
I know the last scene of the film involving Daisy Domergue rubbed a lot of critics the wrong way. They took it as a justification for misogyny, or something like that. I think those critics need not be so sensitive and uptight. I feel the scene was meant to be shocking and repulsive for the audience to see. Tarantino’s films are filled with this kind of shocking imagery and The Hateful Eight is of no exception. The fact that this scene got such a reaction from audiences and critics proves it was effective and accomplished what it was meant to do.
Prior fans of Tarantino’s work will find The Hateful Eight a fun experience. It has the compelling dialogue of Pulp Fiction and the look of Django Unchained. Both of which were great films. The Hateful Eight definitely lives up to the expectations we now have for his films and I hope we’ll see good work from him in the future.
The Verdict: A