Kill Bill Volume 2
|Kill Bill: Volume 2|
|Directed by||Quentin Tarantino|
|Produced by||Lawrence Bender|
|Written by||Quentin Tarantino|
|Story by||Quentin Tarantino
(character The Bride)
Vivica A. Fox
|Music by||Robert Rodriguez
|Edited by||Sally Menke|
|A Band Apart|
|Distributed by||Miramax Films
(Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
|Running time||136 minutes|
Kill Bill: Volume 2 is a 2004 action film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. It is the second of two volumes that were released several months apart. Kill Bill was originally scheduled for a single theatrical release, but with a running time of over four hours, it was separated into two films. Kill Bill Volume 1 was released in late 2003, and Kill Bill: Volume 2 was released in early 2004.
The story follows a character initially identified as "The Bride", a former member of an assassination team who seeks revenge on her ex-colleagues who massacred members of her wedding party and tried to kill her. Her actual name is revealed in Volume 2.
The film opens with the same scene from the first film, of Bill (David Carradine) shooting the Bride (Uma Thurman). The Bride herself then appears behind the wheel of a car, briefly recounting the events of the previous film and stating she is currently on her way to kill Bill.
In a flashback, the Bride—visibly pregnant—and her groom, Tommy Plympton (Chris Nelson), rehearse their wedding. Bill, her former lover and leader of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad, arrives unexpectedly and wishes her well. It is revealed that the Bride had retired from assassination and left Bill in order to give a better life to her unborn daughter. Moments later, the other assassination squad members arrive and attack the wedding rehearsal on Bill's orders.
In the present, Bill warns his brother Budd (Michael Madsen), a former Deadly Viper and now a bouncer, that he will be targeted next. The Bride arrives at his trailer and bursts through the door, expecting to ambush him, but Budd is expecting her, shooting her in the chest with a double-barreled shotgun blast of rock salt, then sedating her. Budd calls Elle Driver (Daryl Hannah), another former Deadly Viper, offering to sell her the Bride's Hanzō sword for a million dollars cash. He then seals the Bride inside a coffin and buries her alive.
A flashback shows Bill and the Bride camping one night, when Bill tells her a story of legendary martial arts master Pai Mei (Gordon Liu) and his Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique, a death blow Pai Mei has so far refused to teach any of his students. Bill then takes the Bride to Pai Mei's temple to be trained by him. Though Pai Mei initially ridicules her for being a Caucasian American woman (three things that, according to Bill, Pai Mei utterly despises), she eventually gains his respect and learns a number of techniques, including the art of punching through thick planks of wood from inches away. She uses this skill to break out of the coffin and claws her way to the surface.
Elle arrives at Budd's trailer for their transaction but has hidden a lethal black mamba with her money, out of envy that Budd earned the credit for killing the Bride. After the black mamba kills Budd, she then calls Bill and tells him that the Bride has killed Budd by putting the black mamba in his trailer, and that Elle has killed the Bride; it is at this point that the Bride's name, Beatrix Kiddo, is finally revealed. As she exits the trailer, she is ambushed by Beatrix, who had arrived there soon after Elle. In the middle of an all-out battle in the trailer, Elle taunts Beatrix with the news that Elle, who also trained with Pai Mei, had poisoned him in revenge for his snatching out her eye when she called him a "miserable old fool." Beatrix then plucks out Elle's remaining eye and leaves her screaming and thrashing about in the trailer with the black mamba.
Beatrix subsequently travels to Mexico to interrogate an elderly gentleman, Esteban Vihaio, about Bill's whereabouts. Esteban, who is the proprietor of a brothel, was purportedly a father figure to a younger Bill. Regardless, Esteban willingly divulges Bill's location, stating that Bill "would want [him] to."
After finding Bill deep in the Mexican countryside, Beatrix is shocked to find her now-four-year-old daughter B.B. (Perla Haney-Jardine) alive and well. She spends the evening with Bill and B.B. After B.B. has gone to bed, Bill shoots Beatrix with a dart containing a truth serum and interrogates her. A flashback recalls Beatrix's discovery of her pregnancy while on an assassination mission, and her resulting decision to call off her assignment and leave the Deadly Vipers. While on an assassination assignment to kill Lisa Wong, Kiddo discovers she is pregnant with Bill's baby. Immediately after, she is confronted by Karen Kim, an assassin sent by Lisa Wong to kill her. However, Karen narrowly misses her shot. During the resulting stand-off, Kiddo convinces Karen to pick up the positive pregnancy strip from the floor. The two mutually agree to abort their missions and go home.
Beatrix explains that she ran away without telling Bill in order to protect their unborn daughter from him and his life. Though Bill understands, he remains unapologetic for what he did, explaining that he's "a murdering bastard," and that "there are consequences for breaking the heart of a murdering bastard." They fight, but although Beatrix loses her weapon, she disables Bill with Pai Mei's Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique, which he had secretly taught her. Bill makes his peace with her and dies. Beatrix departs with B.B.; later they are seen watching cartoons in a hotel together after Beatrix gives thanks.
- Uma Thurman as The Bride / Beatrix Kiddo (Black Mamba): A former member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad who is described as "the deadliest woman in the world". She is targeted by her former allies in the wedding chapel massacre, and falls into a coma. When she awakens four years later, she embarks on a deadly trail of revenge against the perpetrators of the massacre.
- David Carradine as Bill (Snake Charmer): The former leader of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. He is also the former lover of Beatrix and the father of her daughter. He is the final and eponymous target of Beatrix's revenge.
- Lucy Liu as O-Ren Ishii (Cottonmouth): A former member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. She later becomes "Queen of the Tokyo Underworld". She is the first of Beatrix's revenge targets.
- Vivica A. Fox as Vernita Green (Copperhead): A former member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. She later becomes a homemaker living under the false name Jeannie Bell. She is the second of Beatrix's revenge targets.
- Michael Madsen as Budd (Sidewinder): A former member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad and brother of Bill. He later becomes a bouncer living in a trailer. He is the third of Beatrix's revenge targets.
- Daryl Hannah as Elle Driver (California Mountain Snake): A former member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. She is the fourth of Beatrix's revenge targets.
- Julie Dreyfus as Sofie Fatale: O-Ren's lawyer, best friend, and second lieutenant. She is also a former protégé of Bill's, and was present at the wedding chapel massacre.
- Chiaki Kuriyama as Gogo Yubari: O-Ren's high school bodyguard
- Sonny Chiba as Hattori Hanzo: Revered as the greatest swordsmith of all time. Although long retired, he agrees to craft a sword for Beatrix.
- Gordon Liu as Pai Mei: An immensely powerful and extremely old martial arts master. Bill, Beatrix, and Elle all train under him.
- Stephanie L. Moore, Shana Stein, and Caitlin Keats as Joleen, Erica, and Janeen, Beatrix's best friends who are present at the wedding rehearsal.
- Bo Svenson as Reverend Harmony: The minister who was to officiate at Beatrix and Tommy's wedding.
- Jeannie Epper as Mrs. Harmony: Reverend Harmony's wife.
- Chris Nelson as Tommy Plympton: Beatrix's fiancé who is killed in the wedding chapel massacre.
- Samuel L. Jackson as "Rufus": The organist who was to perform at Beatrix and Tommy's wedding.
- Larry Bishop as Larry Gomez: The abusive manager of the strip club at which Budd works.
- Sid Haig as Jay: An employee at the strip club where Budd works.
- Michael Parks as Esteban Vihaio: A retired pimp. He was the first of Bill's “father figures”. Beatrix comes to him asking for Bill's whereabouts.
- Perla Haney-Jardine as B.B.: The daughter of Beatrix and Bill. She is raised by her father while her mother is comatose.
- Helen Kim as Karen: An assassin sent to kill Beatrix. Her attack comes moments after Beatrix learns that she is pregnant.
- Lawrence Bender (uncredited) as Hotel clerk
As with Tarantino's previous films, Kill Bill features an eclectic soundtrack comprising many musical genres. On the two soundtracks, music ranges from country music to selections from the Spaghetti Western film scores of Ennio Morricone. Bernard Herrmann's theme from the film Twisted Nerve is whistled by the menacing Elle Driver in the hospital scene. A brief, 15-second excerpt from the opening of the Ironside theme music by Quincy Jones is used as the Bride's revenge motif, which flares up with a red-tinged flashback whenever she's in the company of her next target. Instrumental tracks from Japanese guitarist Tomoyasu Hotei figure prominently, and after the success of Kill Bill they were frequently used in American TV commercials and at sporting events. The end credits are driven by the rock and roll version of "Malagueña Salerosa", a traditional Mexican song, performed by "Chingon", Robert Rodriguez's band.
Kill Bill: Volume 2 was released in theaters on April 16, 2004. It was originally scheduled to be released on February 20, 2004, but was rescheduled. Variety posited that the delay was to coincide its theatrical release with Volume 1's release on DVD. In the United States and Canada, Volume 2 was released in 2,971 theaters and grossed $25.1 million on its opening weekend, ranking first at the box office and beating fellow opener The Punisher. Volume 2's opening weekend gross was higher than Volume 1's, and the equivalent success confirmed the studio's financial decision to split the film into two theatrical releases. Volume 2 attracted more female theatergoers than Volume 1, with 60% of the audience being male and 56% of the audience being men between the ages of 18 to 29 years old. Volume 2's opening weekend was the largest to date for Miramax Films aside from releases under its arm Dimension Films. The opening weekend was also the largest to date in the month of April for a film restricted in the United States to theatergoers 17 years old and up, besting Life's 1999 record. Volume 2's opening weekend was strengthened by the reception of Volume 1 in the previous year among audiences and critics, abundant publicity related to the splitting into two volumes, and the DVD release of Volume 1 in the week before Volume 2's theatrical release.
Outside of the United States and Canada, Volume 2 was released in 20 territories over the weekend of April 23, 2004. It grossed an estimated $17.7 million and ranked first at the international box office, ending an eight-week streak held by The Passion of the Christ. Volume 2 grossed a total of $66.2 million in the United States and Canada and $86 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $152.2 million.
Kill Bill: Vol. 2 received positive reviews from film critics, with many praising its direction and saying Tarantino had matured as a filmmaker. For Volume 2, review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 84% based on reviews from 230 critics and reports a rating average of 7.7 out of 10. It reported the consensus, "Talkier and less action-packed than Vol. 1, Kill Bill Vol. 2, nevertheless, delivers the goods for those expecting a satisfying conclusion to this two-parter." At Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average score out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the film received an average score of 83 based on 42 reviews.
Roger Ebert celebrated the films, saying "Put the two parts together, and Tarantino has made a masterful saga that celebrates the martial arts genre while kidding it, loving it, and transcending it.... This is all one film, and now that we see it whole, it's greater than its two parts." In 2009, he placed the film on his twenty best films of the decade list.
Cultural historian Maud Lavin argues that Beatrix Kiddo's embodiment of murderous revenge taps into viewers' personal fantasies of committing violence. For audiences, particularly women viewers, this overly aggressive female character provides a complex site for identification with one's own aggression.
Uma Thurman received a Golden Globe Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama nomination in 2005 for her role. David Carradine also received a Best Supporting Actor nomination in the same year. Kill Bill: Vol. 2 was placed in Empire Magazine's list of the "500 Greatest Films of All Time" at number 423 and the Bride was also ranked number 66 in Empire magazine's "100 Greatest Movie Characters".
In a December 2005 interview, Tarantino addressed the lack of a special edition DVD for Kill Bill by stating "I've been holding off because I've been working on it for so long that I just wanted a year off from Kill Bill and then I'll do the big supplementary DVD package."
The United States does not have a DVD boxed set of Kill Bill, though box sets of the two separate volumes are available in other countries, such as France, Japan and the United Kingdom. Upon the DVD release of Volume 2 in the US, however, Best Buy did offer an exclusive box set slipcase to house the two individual releases together.
The Whole Bloody Affair
Tarantino announced at the 2008 Provincetown International Film Festival that a single film version of part 1 and 2 called Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair with an extended animation sequence was to be released in May 2009. Screenings of the complete film began on March 27, 2011 at the New Beverly Cinema. This was verified to be the original print that premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2003, before the decision was made to split the film into two parts due to the roughly four-hour length.
Oh yeah, initially I was thinking this would be my "Dollars Trilogy". I was going to do a new one every ten years. But I need at least fifteen years before I do this again. I've already got the whole mythology: Sofie Fatale will get all of Bill's money. She'll raise Nikki, who'll take on The Bride. Nikki deserves her revenge every bit as much as The Bride deserved hers. I might even shoot a couple of scenes for it now so I can get the actresses while they're this age.
According to Bloody-Disgusting.com, details emerged around 2007 about two possible sequels, Kill Bill Volumes 3 and 4. According to the article, "Bennett Walsh said at the Shanghai International Film Festival, the third film involves the revenge of two killers whose arms and eye were hacked by Uma Thurman in the first stories". The article adds that the "fourth installment of the popular kung fu action films concerns a cycle of reprisals and daughters who avenge their mother's deaths".
Quentin Tarantino said at the 2006 Comic Con that, after the completion of Grindhouse, he wants to make two anime Kill Bill films. One will be an origin story about Bill and his mentors, and the other will be an origin starring The Bride. The latter is most likely to be a prequel, but could also follow the rumored (sequel) plot reported in Entertainment Weekly in April 2004.
At the Morelia International Film Festival on October 1, 2009, while being interviewed on an Italian TV show after being asked about the success of the two Kill Bill films, Tarantino addressed the hostess by claiming "You haven't asked me about the third one" then asking the woman to ask the question would he be making a third Kill Bill film, which he replied "Yes", and claiming "The Bride will fight again!" On October 3, 2009, he further predicted that Kill Bill 3 would be his ninth film, and would be released in 2014. He said he intends to make another unrelated film before that date as his eighth film. He confirmed that he wanted ten years to pass between the Bride's last conflict, to give her and her daughter a period of peace.
In December 2012 however, Tarantino confirmed that Kill Bill Volume 3 now looks unlikely, and that he wishes to focus on other unrelated projects.
- Diorio, Carl; Hettrick, Scott (January 8, 2004). "Inside Move: 'Bill 2' delayed until April". Variety.
- "Kill Bill Vol. 2 (2004)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved June 29, 2011.
- Staff (April 19, 2004). "Bill makes a killing at US box office". The Guardian. "Kill Bill: Volume 2's total... confirmed the financial good sense of Miramax's decision to split the movie in two."
- McNary, Dave (April 18, 2004). "'Bill's' better half". Variety.
- Staff (April 29, 2004). "Kill Bill tops global box office". BBC News.
- "Kill Bill: Volume 2". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved June 29, 2011.
- "Kill Bill: Vol. 2". Metacritic. Retrieved June 29, 2011.
- Roger Ebert (2004-04-16). "Kill Bill, Volume 2". rogerebert.com. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- Roger Ebert (2009-12-30). "The best films of the decade". Roger Ebert's Journal. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- Lavin, Maud (2010). "Push Comes to Shove: New Images of Aggressive Women", p. 123. MIT Press, Cambridge. ISBN 978-0-262-12309-9.
- "The 100 Greatest Movie Characters| 66. The Bride | Empire". www.empireonline.com. 2006-12-05. Retrieved 2012-05-29.
- "Tarantino Brings Kill Bills Together". ContactMusic.com. December 21, 2005. Retrieved 2007-06-11.
- "Best DVD Packaging of 2004". DVD Talk. Retrieved 2007-06-11.
- [dead link]
- "Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair Premieres March 27".
- Lussier, Germain (2011). "‘Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair’ Has Small Changes That Produce Big Results". Slashfilm.com. Retrieved May 15, 2011.
- "Kill Bill Volumes 3 and 4 Details Emerge!".
- Rodriguez and Tarantino Present Grindhouse!, Blake Wright on ComingSoon.net, July 22, 2006. Retrieved August 7, 2006.
- SDCC '06: Tarantino Confirms More Kill Bill!, Bloody-Disgusting.com, July 22, 2006. Retrieved October 5, 2007.
- Quentin Tarantino Talks Kill Bill 3: The Bride Will Fight Again!, BadTaste.it, October 1, 2009. Retrieved October 2, 2009.
- "Tarantino Teases 'Kill Bill Volume 3'".
- Young, James (October 3, 2009). "Tarantino wants to 'Kill Bill' again". Variety.
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Kill Bill Volume 2|
- Official website
- Kill Bill Volume 2 at the Internet Movie Database
- Kill Bill Volume 2 at AllMovie
- Kill Bill Volume 2 at Box Office Mojo
- Kill Bill Volume 2 at Rotten Tomatoes
- Article from Universal Library including extended analysis
- Production I.G on the Kill Bill Anime Sequences Article from CGSociety.org