Quentin Tarantino’s 8th film, coincidentally titled The Hateful Eight hits theaters in January and in 70mm on Christmas Day and it is one hell of a ride.
The post Civil War film we first meet bounty hunter John Ruth and his fugitive Daisy Domergue who are trying to get to Red Rock where Domergue will be brought to justice. On their way, a blizzard hits and they’re forced to post up at Minnie’s Haberdashery to wait out the storm. Along the way to Minnie’s they pick up two strangers – Major Marquis Warren played by Samuel L Jackson and Chris Mannix played by Walton Goggins. When they arrive at Minnie’s they encounter four unfamiliar faces and as the storm takes over, the eight travelers get to know each other and we’re left to wonder who will make it to Red Rock alive.
First, lets just go ahead and say – make sure you use the bathroom before seeing this and stock up on snacks. The film is a long one, with the 70mm Road Show run time being 3 hours and 2 minutes with an intermission and the digital version running is about 5 minutes or so shorter. The first half of the film is very dialogue heavy and sometimes it can be hard to follow because everyone’s accents are pretty thick, but the dialogue is intriguing. Now, I like movies that give a backstory and you feel like you know the characters, and in this you definitely get that but at times it might just be too much. However, it’s written smart and witty which helps to balance out the slow pace of this first half. Also, as with Django and other Tarantino movies, the dialogue is filled with the topics of race and laced with a lot of mother f***ers.
The second half of the movie is when things really go up a notch and the bloody fun begins. This half was my favorite because, it felt like a real western mixed with the best of a whodunnit mystery. You sit trying to figure out who is telling the truth about who they are and who is shady. Who will be the first to pull the trigger? Who is working together and who isn’t? It’s fun and you get invested in it.
All of the performances are great, especially Walton Goggins and even Jennifer Jason Leigh who doesn’t say a whole lot but is fascinating in the way she handles Domergue’s situation. I also surprisingly liked Channing Tatum in this. I’m a fan of him, but it’s not usually for his acting. He’s not really known for being a fantastic actor as far as I know, but he played his role well and it might be the best I’ve seen him even though his part is short.
Now if you’re going to see the film in 70mm beware – you could run into some screening problems. At our press screening, a 70mm showing at the Crest Theater, the projector messed up so the whole first half was blurry but in 70mm. The second half they showed us in Digital which was great because it was clear but it did lose a bit of the magic of the movie. Being shot in 70mm, you really do get that old western feel and you get to really feel like you’re in Minnie’s because you can see what everyone is doing in the background. You can keep tabs on them. This also might be a bit distracting but your eyes always have something to focus on. I’d say if you choose to see this movie, try your hand at the 70mm to get the full experience.
So overall, this is a gritty, fun, whodunnit movie with a fantastic ensemble cast. I’d say definitely go see it in theaters. Watching it on a little TV later just won’t do it justice.
Let me know your thoughts about The Hateful Eight below and click here to get some more insight into the movie from our recent trip to the press conference for the film.