In German-occupied France, young Jewish refugee Shosanna Dreyfus witnesses the slaughter of her family by Colonel Hans Landa. Narrowly escaping with her life, she plots her revenge several years later when German war hero Fredrick Zoller takes a rapid interest in her and arranges an illustrious movie premiere at the theater she now runs. With the promise of every major Nazi officer in attendance, the event catches the attention of the "Basterds", a group of Jewish-American guerrilla soldiers led by the ruthless Lt. Aldo Raine. As the relentless executioners advance and the conspiring young girl's plans are set in motion, their paths will cross for a fateful evening that will shake the very annals of history. Written by
The Massie Twins
B.J. Novak had to take leave from appearing on The Office (2005) in order to play Private First Class Utivich. His absence on the show was explained by his character going to "Thailand with friends from high school". See more »
The theater in Paris is shown brightly lit at night and street lamps are on. All occupied cities within range of Allied bombers were under strict nighttime blackout. The cinema is also lit inside during the afternoon, but there were severe power restrictions in Paris from January 1942 until after the war. See more »
This review gives everything away, so see the movie first.
It is neither allegory nor satire, the two finest categories in both fiction and cinema, and yet it approaches perfection anyway. It is of a nature I have no name for, but it is a nature that reveals truth and undermines falsehoods.
Nothing is more cloaked in falsehood than the victor's depiction of past wars. It is especially true of the children of the victors--especially the children of US WWII veterans, like myself.
We get our view of the war from movies like Audi Murphy in To Hell and Back or Saving Private Ryan. Nothing but praise for our heroes and cheers for killing the enemy.
But QT exposes this hypocrisy by engineering a film where we are disgusted first by the excesses of the enemy and then by the excesses of our heroes. That is the first instance. The hypocrisy is slammed home in the second instance where we are first disgusted by the sight of American after American being shot dead by by a German sniper hero and secondly brought to revel in the butchery of several hundred enemy at the hands of our heroes. Tit for tat.
It fits the pattern of praise for our heroes and cheers for killing the enemy, but because it is presented both ways the hypocrisy becomes self- evident. This is why so many people hate the movie--even if they fail to realize it. High art, true art, 10 of 10.
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