As far as I’m concerned, Quentin Tarantino hasn’t made a bad movie. Sure, some are better than others, but every single film is extremely good to great. If you had told me twenty-three years ago that the guy who just blew my mind with Reservoir Dogs would sometime in the future make two of my favorite westerns and one of my favorite WWII films, I would have laughed in your face. I might have been able to imagine him making two of my favorite kung fu action/revenge films, but probably not. Anyway, I wrote a short piece about Tarantino’s eighth feature film, The Hateful Eight, for our Top Ten Favorite Movies of 2015 and I think one line truly sums up the film in a way that everyone can understand: At its most basic, The Hateful Eight is the tale of a racist white man and a racist black man coming together to defeat an international coalition of bastards set on rescuing one of their leaders and ravaging the countryside. That about does it. Okay, a little more, then. The film is set an unspecified time after the Civil War and features an ensemble cast of Tarantino veterans and a few new faces (to Tarantino films, anyway). Samuel L. Jackson plays Major Marquis Warren, a current bounty hunter and former cavalry officer with a dark past that involved killing as many white people as humanly possible. Kurt Russell is John “The Hangman” Ruth, a bounty hunter whose claim to fame is always bringing his prey in alive for the hangman to finish off. His prey this time is Daisy Domergue, embodied by more than played by Jennifer Jason Leigh, who is perhaps the most compelling, complex, and frightening character in the film. The rest of The Eight are played by the legendary Bruce Dern, Walton Goggins (of Justified fame), Demián Bichir, and Tarantino vets Tim Roth and Michael Madsen. James Parks is in there too as the stagecoach driver O.B. Jackson, and steals more than one scene along the way. All of these people are holed up at Minnie’s Haberdashery to wait out a blizzard that’s keeping “The Hangman” from getting Domergue to trial. The majority of the film is structured as a bizarre closed-door murder mystery as Warren and Ruth try to figure out who they can trust in order to make it through the storm alive because somebody else in the cabin has plans to rescue Domergue. This all works itself out in a series of brilliant monologues and psychological games that climaxes in a gloriously over-the-top gorefest of blood, bone, teeth, and hate. I love this film. The Disc: This is an AVC encoded 1080p transfer in 2.75:1 shot with Ultra Panavision lenses that hadn’t been used since the mid ’60s and every frame is amazing. Detail is fantastically clear throughout the film, shadows are deep and dark, colors are rich, and when the film ventures outside of Minnie’s Haberdashery the landscapes are things to behold. Quite simply, this is one of the most beautifully transferred films in my collection. The sound is an immersive DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track that doesn’t seem all that special while the film stays indoors, but as with the visual elements, out in nature, the sound comes to life in stunning fashion. Dialogue is consistently clean and Ennio Morricone’s score comes up subtly and beautifully. This is a spectacular disc regardless of what one might think of the film itself. As an added bonus, not only is there the typical Scene Selection option to jump through the film, you can also explore the film via Music Selection, taking you to the beginning of each of Morricone’s pieces (as well as Jack White’s “Apple Blossom”). That’s the proper respect for Morricone’s Oscar-winning score. The Extras: There really isn’t a lot to look forward to, here. Both featurettes are short and lacking the depth that would make them must-see additions to the release. Combine that with the fact that there’s no commentary track, I can’t imagine anyone looking at these extras and deciding to buy the disc based on what they bring to the table. Behind the Eight: A Behind the Scenes Look (4:58): This is a short and sweet fluff piece featuring interviews with the cast talking about how fun it was to work with each other and Tarantino. There’s not really anything “behind the scenes” about it, other than a short clip or two. You can easily skip it. Sam Jackson’s Guide to Glorious 70mm (7:49): Sam Jackson provides the intro and wrap-up for this short piece plugging the Christmas 2015 Road Show release of The Hateful Eight. The real value here is hearing Tarantino and Director of Photography Bob Richardson talk about the history of road shows and their work with Panavision to make this only the 11th film to shoot in Ultra Panavision. The Hateful Eight was shot in 65mm and then projected in 70mm, which is nearly twice the size we’re now accustomed to seeing on-screen, and Ultra Panavision is the widest ever film size. The lenses hadn’t been used since the mid-60s and Richardson says he found them on a back shelf collecting dust. After getting approval to use them – and after determining that they still worked – the work began at retrofitting the cameras to make the lenses usable. This is the sort of behind the scenes stuff I was hoping for with this release, and while it’s not a lot, it was welcome. See larger image The Hateful Eight [Blu-ray] New From: $5.00 USD In Stock Advance Review: The Hateful Eight (2015) Blu-rayPaul's Rating5.0Overall ScoreReader Rating: (0 Votes)Share this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.