Kill Bill Volume 2, Love Among Murderers
We all know that REAL Tarantino fans would have watched Kill Bill Volume 2 before the first one. That way you get the full effect. And watch out, because this one’s got a pair of big old flashbacks stuck right in the middle. Volume 2’s considerably less violent than the first, focusing more around the Bride and Bill’s relationship. It’s an excellent conclusion, if not a bit cheesy, and bound to please those who enjoyed Volume 1.
After a quick recap of the last few chapters of her story, you find the Bride driving down the road to meet Bill for their final confrontation. Before that happens, it flashes back to the Two Pines Wedding Chapel, where the Bride is rehearsing a wedding with her friends and Tommy, her husband to be. To her surprise, Bill is on the scene. Worrying that he’ll start something up, she makes him promise to be nice. He declines, but says that he’ll be sweet. Enter four members of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. They kill everyone in the chapel, save for Beatrice and Bill.
Flashing back to the present, Bill is talking to his brother Buck, warning him that the Bride is going to hunt him down and kill him with a Hattori Hanzo sword. Buck doesn’t seem to care that much, mentioning that he sold the Hattori Hanzo sword that bill gave him for $250.
Then you see Buck go to work. Apparently, his job is shitty, he doesn’t like it, yet he does nothing about this because he’s a pushover. Upon returning home, he notices something amiss. Not soon after this, the Bride is shot full of rock salt and buried alive. With only a flashlight and a few inches of space, she must escape her grave of earth and wood.
Second flashback! You get to see a bit of the Bride and Bill before the shooting and scheme and revenge. They appear to be pretty normal for murderous assassins, and very much in love. Bill mentions a Chinese kung-fu master known as Pai Mei, a man who demands respect while giving none to his students until they absolutely earn it. The Bride decides to train under him. Time passes, and under Pai Mei’s cruel tutelage, she learns several combat techniques. In particular, she learns how to punch through a wood board not more than three inches away from her.
And that’s how she escapes. The one-eyed Elle gets a call from Buck, who wants to sell her the Bride’s Hanzo sword. She agrees to pay him one million dollars for it, on the condition that he makes sure the Bride, now revealed to be Beatrix Kiddo, suffers to her last breath. Beatrix manages to see Elle as she arrives at Buck’s trailer, and infiltrates as soon as Buck dies to the Black Mamba hidden in the briefcase full of money.
Beatrix enters the trailer to find Elle wielding her katana, and a grand fight ensues. The cyclops reveals that she killed Pai Mei after he plucked her eye out for calling him a senile old fool. So, Beatrix plucks out her other eye and leaves her to die.
Then, finally, she follows a trail of names back to Bill’s final location, the place where she would complete her revenge. To her astonishment, Bill isn’t the only one there. Also present is her daughter, initially thought to be dead. End synopsis for spoilers.
Kill Bill Volume 2 doesn’t feel particularly long, though some of the scenes drag. The action is rather sporadic, as some of the characters change their tones on a dime when Beatrix makes too sudden a move. Exciting to a fault, I suppose. Overall, the conclusion is rather quiet and much more emotional than that of the prior volume. I personally enjoy it, but that may just be because I thoroughly enjoy Tarantino’s works. Maybe a second opinion will help.
Brian’s Film Review Blog can provide just that. The theme of humanity is given priority over the thrill and the gore, though the latter two each have a notable presence. As far as sequels go, Kill Bill Volume 2 seems to have taken a very minor hit in the realm of quality. But that tends to go without saying. Check out the micro-review by Brian here: http://www.bpdreview.com/2009/02/five-really-really-short-reviews-1.html