- Actors: Uma Thurman, Lucy Liu, Vivica A. Fox, Samuel L. Jackson, David Carradine
- Directors: Quentin Tarantino
- Format: NTSC
- Language: English, French
- Region: Region A/1
- Number of discs: 2
- Studio: eOne Films Distribution
- Release Date: Aug. 11 2009
- Average Customer Review: 82 customer reviews
- ASIN: B002BYYA86
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #75,889 in Movies & TV Shows (See Top 100 in Movies & TV Shows)
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Kill Bill: Volume 2 (Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack) [Blu-ray] (Bilingual)
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"The Bride" (Uma Thurman) gets her satisfaction--and so do we--in Quentin Tarantino's "roaring rampage of revenge," Kill Bill, Vol. 2. Where Vol. 1 was a hyper-kinetic tribute to the Asian chop-socky grindhouse flicks that have been thoroughly cross-referenced in Tarantino's film-loving brain, Vol. 2--not a sequel, but Part Two of a breathtakingly cinematic epic--is Tarantino's contemporary martial-arts Western, fueled by iconic images, music, and themes lifted from any source that Tarantino holds dear, from the action-packed cheapies of William Witney (one of several filmmakers Tarantino gratefully honors in the closing credits) to the spaghetti epics of Sergio Leone. Tarantino doesn't copy so much as elevate the genres he loves, and the entirety of Kill Bill is clearly the product of a singular artistic vision, even as it careens from one influence to another. Violence erupts with dynamic impact, but unlike Vol. 1, this slower grand finale revels in Tarantino's trademark dialogue and loopy longueurs, reviving the career of David Carradine (who plays Bill for what he is: a snake charmer), and giving Thurman's Bride an outlet for maternal love and well-earned happiness. Has any actress endured so much for the sake of a unique collaboration? As the credits remind us, "The Bride" was jointly created by "Q&U," and she's become an unforgettable heroine in a pair of delirious movie-movies (Vol. 3 awaits, some 15 years hence) that Tarantino fans will study and love for decades to come. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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"As opposed to jetting around the world, killing human beings, collecting vast sums of money?" her one-time employer asks.
Yes, Arlene is actually The Bride (Uma Thurman), a.k.a. Black Mamba, one of the Deadly Vipers Assassination Squad (D.I.V.A.S., for short). And, yes, the man with whom she's sharing her future plans is Bill, the enigmatic, shadowy D.I.V.A.S. commander who never showed his face in "Kill Bill, Vol. 1."
Bill, played to diabolical perfection by David Carradine, is visible throughout "Kill Bill, Vol. 2," and that's only one of the many changes between the first and last installments of writer-director Quentin Tarantino's epic saga of revenge and retribution. "Vol. 1," which took place largely in Japan, was a magnificently gory, almost operatic homage to the Hong Kong and Japanese cinema of the 1960s and 1970s; "Vol. 2," set primarily in Texas and Mexico, is considerably more controlled -- although no less stylish -- and moodier, paying tribute to the unconventional Westerns of director Sergio Leone and, in its black-and-white flashback sequences, recalling such late-1940s/early-1950s thrillers as "Gun Crazy" and "The Big Heat."
No one ever accused Tarantino of being shy when it comes to laying out his catalog of influences.
Cinematographer Robert Richardson's all-seeing camera swoops, slithers and moves stealthily around each scene, just like our unstoppable heroine, then throws in some extreme close-ups that feel like a fist between the eyes. Editor Sally Menke and production designers David Wasco and Cao Jui Ping do wonderful work as they recreate everything from "In Cold Blood" to the washed-out-looking, jumpy Chinese chop-socky films of the 1970s.
But far from being merely imitative, "Vol. 2" features a few breakthroughs for its creator as well. A prolonged sequence involving a character who is pummeled, drugged and buried alive is one of the most gripping episodes of Tarantino's career, and The Bride's apprenticeship to merciless martial arts master Pai Mei (Gordon Liu), a deceptively wispy-looking type with a strong chauvinistic streak, is outrageously hilarious. "Your so-called kung fu is really quite pathetic," Pai Mei taunts as The Bride tries -- and fails -- to impress him with her moves. "Like all Yankee women, all you can do is order in restaurants and spend a man's money!"
The finale of "Vol. 1" was a blood-drenched, wickedly hilarious free-for-all, with The Bride dispatching scores of would-be hitmen in a showdown in a Tokyo nightclub, but the last half-hour of "Vol. 2" is a shocker of an entirely different kind, as Tarantino aims for the heart instead of the funnybone. He tried something somewhat similar in the bittersweet wrap-up of "Jackie Brown," with mixed results. He's much more successful this time out, partly because he's created a steadier build-up to the crucial emotional crescendo (set to a marvelously trippy remix of The Zombies' "She's Not There") and partly because the tension Carradine and Thurman generate in the pivotal scene, as bloodlust collides with memories of happier days, is utterly riveting.
Tarantino's cast fills out a classic rogues' gallery, dominated by Carradine's Bill, a psychotic who conceals his sadism beneath a calm, paternalistic exterior. Daryl Hannah's one-eyed Elle Driver and Michael Madsen's Budd, both of whom were briefly seen in "Vol. 1," get ample opportunity to prove their worth as antagonists of The Bride. The face-off with Elle, in particular, is so delightfully demented only Tarantino could have conjured it up.
Was the director wise in turning "Bill" into a double-bill? Absolutely. For one thing, he must have realized he had made an extravaganza that would have been too intense and certainly too emotionally exhausting for most audiences to process in a single four-hour sitting. Also, he obviously knew he had a second half that would be well worth the six-month wait.
"Gargantuan -- always liked that word; so rarely have a chance to use it in a sentence," the icy-hearted Elle murmurs at one point. Try this on for size: The frenzied, funny and unabashedly ultraviolent "Kill Bill" saga represents a gargantuan achievement in action cinema.