Revisit: Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill Franchise

Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill” franchise is more than what meets the eye, besides being a fantastic film that’s high on style, violence and substance with characters that still remains immortal in our memories.

Deadly Viper Assassination Squad members. From Left to Right: Elle Driver (Daryl Hannah), Vernita Green (Vivica Fox), Budd (Michael Madsen) and Oren-Ishii (Lucy Liu)

Kill Bill revolves around a woman name Beatrix Kiddo (played remarkably by Uma Thurman) who, earlier referred as Bride in the first part, is seen seeking revenge on the gang of Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. Beatrix, a heavily pregnant bride, was once rehearsing for her marriage in the El Peso Texas Cathedral and that’s when the gang members – consisting of Oren-Ishii (Lucy Liu), Vernita Green (Vivica Fox), Budd (Michael Madsen) & Elle Driver (Daryl Hannah) gate-crashed the event, gun-fired everyone EXCEPT the bride whom they personally taken to task, brutally and mercilessly beaten her black and blue and with Bill (late David Carradine), the gang leader, shot a bullet into her temple. Immediately bride slips into coma only to get revived back after 4 years, and vividly remembering the horrific incident that led her to coma, decides to settle scores with every member who dared to murder her and to wipe them off from the face of the earth including Bill.
Watching blood splattering sequences on screen can be the most daunting experience for most of us (including me) but the manner in which filmmaker Quentin Tarantino treats violence is commendable, not only making it viewer-friendly but also exciting to watch. One of the best action sequence has to be the one where Beatrix single-handedly knock out all the crazy 88 members in Tokyo, logically it’s not possible however it was very well choreographed believably and more than the sword-fight, it was Uma’s enthusiasm and her fearless act that made it worth watching and we sensed she’d a helluva of time.

late David Carradine (Bill) – Leader of Deadly Viper Assassination Squad

Story is narrated in a non-linear pattern switching effectively between the past and present breaking into several chapters. Part 1 was kind of confusing because we’d no idea what was happening but it was heavily compensated with it’s artistic depictions of characters, it was from Part 2 onward, a film more focused on the plot than actions scenes, we were able to join the dots and the entire picture got more clear on why the bride embarked on a journey and roared and rampage with revenge. While we can keep praising about the film’s technical department, one thing that I take away from Kill Bill is the message it has imparted without making it obvious.
In Part 2, we come to know that Beatrix Kiddo was actually the part of the Deadly Wiper Assassination Squad and was involved in a romantic relationship with the leader Bill. As a former assassin, she would indulge in deadly stunts, apparently kill people as per the order given by Bill. One day while carrying out a task, She discovers her pregnancy, secretly give up her assassin life and escape to a different world changing her identity so that she could never get caught and can easily live a dignified life not only for herself but also for her unborn baby and we know how awfully her plan went topsy-turvy.
I believe faithfully in a phrase that whatever energy a person puts out into the world, be it positive or negative, will be returned to that person three times. Quentin Tarantino, with his violent representation, imparts a message that if you’ve screwed up other’s lives with a malicious intent, no way you will be spared and you will,in return, be screwed more mercilessly than you could ever think. He wants us, audience, to read between the lines and get what he is trying to express.
He is urging us to draw our own conclusion from the film and what I conclude from it is that, without justifying the mercilessly conducted bloody violence, Beatrix must’ve killed a lot of people with a less yet brutal impunity in the past that brought her to justice although she took an earnest attempt to sever ties with the crime world. Unfortunately, that’s how life is. Once you get trapped into the bad and ugly world of crime, it’s hard to break away because these are the forces who never appreciate honesty and good work because all they need is a scapegoat whom they can take advantage of till they’re of use.
Here, the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad are those negative force and Beatrix is that person who choose a wrong path. Similarly all the members of the Squad got what they deserved – Death except one-eyed Elle Driver (who killed her own brother Budd out of greed to access his money and ultimately got her second eye pulled out by Beatrix leaving her completely eyeless and blind).

Uma Thurman (Beatrix Kiddo a.k.a Bride) knocking out crazy 88 members in the sensational action sequence in Part 1.

There is a scene in the onset of Part 1 where a 4-year-old Nikki witnesses her mother Vernita Green get killed by Beatrix in her home in Pasadena. Girl is stunned and gazes continuously at Beatrix, who on the other hand, was initially startled as she didn’t intend to kill in front of her yet empathetically offered an opportunity to seek revenge when she grow up. I wouldn’t be surprised to know if a film gets made, in the near future, on showdown between the grown up Nikki and much older Beatrix where the latter will get killed eventually.
That’s how Karma work. Indeed, Karma is a bitch.

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