Review: ‘Kill Bill Vol. 2’

Someone old, someone bled, someone killed, someone dead.

Picking up exactly where we left off after Vol. 1, The Bride (Uma Thurman) continues to hack her way through her list of five victims: two down, three to go. Unfortunately, the rest all know full well that she’s coming and that she’s determined to finish her task, and the Deadly Vipers Assassination Squad doesn’t intend to go down easily. The Bride will have a few surprises in store for her before she’ll finally get her chance to kill Bill, but she wouldn’t have it any other way.

Writer/director Quentin Tarantino unloads the second part of his fourth film, Kill Bill, and the only crime here is that it shouldn’t have been hacked into two parts to begin with. Brimming with dialogue that automatically garners an R-rating, Tarantino happily spends entire chapters of scenes just to explain one plot point, all the while filling it with revelations that come back to haunt the characters throughout the film. It’s more of what you expect, and it’s never dull.

Don’t look for more Anime cartoons this time around; in this half, Tarantino goes straight for the classic Saturday afternoon matinee Kung Fu theater. We learn how The Bride became so formidable while hinting at the beginning of the end for the Deadly Vipers Assassination Squad (well, before The Bride started taking them out, that is). Fans of the first will find more Bill killing to love the second time (or second half) around.

Michael Madsen playing Budd (aka Sidewinder) excels as a washed-up former shadow of himself, which creepily looks exactly like Mickey Rourke on the bottle. Daryl Hannah reprises her role as Elle Driver (aka California Mountain Snake), and while she may not be as convincing as a vicious hard-core assassin, she’s more than willing to dirty herself up for her showdown with The Bride. And, still cool after all these years (in his own words, “I’ve always been cool”), David Carradine as Bill shows us why Bill needs to be killed and why the best is definitely saved for last.

Uma Thurman continues to bask in the glow of the character she co-created with Tarantino; no surprise there, except Thurman finally getting the chance to do so. The credits are as much fun as the film, and there’s plenty of people to credit all the way to the extra post-credit bits before the lights come up. But the question is, will this be the end or could there be further adventures in store for The Bride (aka Black Mamba)? Guess that’ll be the difference in whether it?€™s a prequel or a sequel…!

(a three skull out of four recommendation)

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