The Hateful Eight

December 31, 2015 - Quentin Tarantino calls on some old friends and some new ones for this black comedy bloodfest set in post-Civil War Wyoming. Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell and Jennifer Jason Leigh head the cast. Also starring are Walton Goggins, Tim Roth, Bruce Dern, Michael Madsen and Channing Tatum.

As the movie opens, it's the dead of winter and a stagecoach is trying to outrace a blizzard. Inside the stagecoach are bounty hunter John Ruth (Russell) and his captive, Daisy Domergue (Leigh). Ruth is taking her to Red Rock so she can be hanged and he can collect his $10,000 bounty. Along the way, they pick up another bounty hunter, Major Marquis Warren (Jackson), and the soon-to-be sheriff of Red Rock, Chris Mannix (Goggins).

The approaching blizzard forces them to stop at Minnie's Haberdashery, an isolated inn and store outside of Red Rock. Minnie's not there, but several other people are, including an old Confederate general (Dern), a chatty Englishman (Roth) and a mysterious man named Joe Gage (Madsen). Ruth immediately suspects that one (or more) of these people are actually in cahoots with Domergue and plan to help her escape. Boy, does he turn out to be right.

Overall review: *** I'm generally a fan of Tarantino's work, and I did like this one. I was a little wary of the 2:48 run time, but, honestly, it didn't feel that long. If you've seen any of Tarantino's previous movies, you'll recognize some elements here: the sprays of blood, the camera shot through the floorboards, the circle of people shooting at each other. But, the acting is good (especially Jackson and Leigh), and I would like to see it again to see what I missed the first time.