In my last entry, I mentioned that I would take the introduction to reply to any comments that were left. Unfortunately there were none, however I would like to thank all of those who read it. Currently, that article is my most read post on Moviepilot with over 450 reads in two days. I cannot thank you all enough for reading this and I hope that at least some of you who read the last one came back to read this one. Today, the list continues with the fourth ranked movie of the year for me. I will use the format that I explained in the last article to explain this movie. Enjoy!
#4: The Hateful Eight
Coming in at number four is the eighth film from Quentin Tarantino: The Hateful Eight. If anyone who has looked at my profile can tell, I am a huge Tarantino fan. However, that does not mean this is a completely unbiased choice. The movie follows eight strangers who hold small connections to each other in post-Civil War Wyoming. Escaping from a blizzard in a stagecoach stopover, the tensions run high when rivalries form over racism, Civil War holdover, and the bounty, who happens to be worth $10,000. Things reach a boiling point when people begin dying as the blizzard rages on. In Tarantino fashion, the movie ends in madness and violence as the truth becomes revealed.
In fairness, I will admit that this movie is not the best for everyone. This is definitely not Tarantino’s best film, however that bar is set very high. For me, this movie was everything I was hoping for. It delivered great dialogue with a great ensemble cast and the Tarantino violence that made him popular. This movie felt like a mini Tarantino reunion of sorts with Tim Roth, Michael Mann and Samuel L. Jackson. In addition to those fellows, Kurt Russel and Jennifer Jason Leigh turn in stellar performances as the two play-off of each other well. Leigh has been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, which is well deserved since her performance as the prisoner is stands out among the great cast. Also, Walton Goggins is arguably the best performance in the entire movie. In his role as the sheriff, Goggins portrays the only character development in the entire film. While the entire cast of characters are brilliant in both acting and creation, the sheriff is the only transition that is apparent. Without spoiling anything about the plot of the movie, the audience sees Goggins’s character develop from his Confederate rooted persona to a man of the law (in a Tarantino way of course). His performance is one that should have been recognized at least in talks for a nomination for the Academy Award for the Best Supporting Actor. However, the best performance of the movie is Samuel L Jackson. His mid-movie monologue alone is the best one of the entire year. Some may say it is simply Jackson being Samuel L Jackson, especially since it’s a Tarantino movie. That opinion is not unreasonable, but his performance lends itself to more complexity than that. Jackson’s character is the one who drives the movie along for both the characters and the audience. He is the one who kick starts the action at the tail-end of the first half. While I am not going to say that one actor should replace another in nominations (especially when I have not seen all of the nominated movies), but I will say that I would compare Jackson’s performance on the same level as Matt Damon’s from The Martian.
One aspect of movies that I normally do not pay too much attention to is the music/score. While I acknowledge that it is important to a movie, it never stands out to me usually unless it is an iconic score. The score for this movie was amazing and it forced me to give it the respect that is deserves. From the opening credits, the music set the tone for the entire movie. Bravo to Ennio Morricone! Moving away from the music, the movie was shot beautiful in every scene. I wish I could have seen this movie in the 70mm style that it was shot in because the amount of work that must have been put into it is impressive. Tarantino is known for taking time and truly caring about the work that he presents to the audience. Although this is not one of his best movies, the work can clearly be seen in every scene. The man prides himself on not putting out something solely to make money.
Like I said previously, I wanted to see this movie in the 70mm format. The problem was that the closest place to view it in 70mm was 45 minutes away. Also, I wanted to see this movie the first night that it came out, which unfortunately happened to be on Christmas Eve and only in the theater 45 minutes away. So I impatiently waited until it was released in the local theater and saw it in standard digital format. It was late and I was tired, but I was still able to fully enjoy the movie. The beginning is a little slow since there is a lot of plot development to set up. For me, it was enjoyable and delivered in Tarantino dialogue. It entertained me personally, but I can see how some people might have been bored or felt it dragged on. Either way, the movie does pick up immediately in the second act when things begin being revealed. This is where the movie shifts in top five of the year for me. The revealing of the plot secrets and the corresponding actions that follow make the movie intense. Plus, Channing Tatum appears for a brief amount of time (much like Michael Fassbender or Michael Meyers in Inglorious Basterds) in the best role I have seen him in. It is amazing to me how Tarantino pulls the best of out the actors that are casted in his roles. By the time the end credits begin to roll, I barely have realized how much time has passed. It is a three hour movie that does not drag on for too long. Even if one believes the beginning is slow, the second half of the movies flies by through the climax and resolution. Continuing the trend of fourth, I would say this movie is Tarantino’s fourth best movie. Why is this movie only fourth of the year when I am a fanatic of Tarantino? While I did thoroughly enjoy The Hateful Eight, the beginning did feel not as good as the ending. The beginning is still good in my opinion, but the ending outdoes it in every way. The top three movies on my list were on the same level of greatness throughout. If this movie stayed at the level of the beginning throughout, it would have been an honorable mention. However, if it was like the ending the entire time (ala Pulp Fiction), this movie would easily be number one.
My fourth favorite movie of 2015 was The Hateful Eight. What did you think of this movie? Do you agree with me or think I am completely wrong? Thank you all who have read this. Please feel free to comment below with any opinions about this movie, my list so far, or anything that you feel. I will post my third favorite movie of 2015 in the next couple of days as well as an article about my reaction to Oscar nominations. If you are enjoying what you are reading, follow this page on Moviepilot or follow me on Twitter @talkmoviestome.