Imagine if you could go back to World War 2 and kill a whole heap of Nazis… how would you like to do it? How about get Brad Pitt to lead a bunch of Jewish soldiers as a small unit that sets out to kill them, striking fear into the heart of leadership, including Hitler himself. Now imagine you are a young Jewish girl whose family are slaughtered by the soldiers of one really nasty Nazi. And imagine you had the chance to get him and many other main Nazis… including Hitler himself. Now imagine all of that is directed by Quentin Tarantino. Yup, that is how excellent this film is.
It gets totally and utterly ridiculous at times; wonderfully, really. Funny and absurd. If you don’t like violence, it’s not going to be your cup of tea. But I would recommend watching the opening sequence – I think it is the best opening sequence of a film ever (although then there is Sexy Beast…) Christoph Waltz is utterly amazing in this role.
Inglourious Basterds won an Oscar for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role (Christoph Waltz) and was nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Achievement in Directing (Quentin Tarantino), Best Writing, Original Screenplay (Quentin Tarantino), Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Achievement in Film Editing, Best Achievement in Sound Mixing and Best Achievement in Sound Editing.
P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) wrote Mary Poppins, and Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) wanted to make a film of it. But she hates films and she hates animation and she won’t bear it. However, she is convinced to visit Hollywood and work with a fabulous team (Bradley Whitford, Jason Schwartzman and B.J. Novak) to turn it into a film. Travers hates every moment of it, from the small talk of her driver, Paul Giamatti, to the food delivered to their workspace. But the experience takes her back to her childhood in rural Australia with her alcoholic father.
Most of the film I loved. I didn’t love the structure all of the time – sometimes the flashbacks were a bit clunky and annoying, but they were so important to the film as a whole. Emma Thompson is always a delight to watch on-screen and I especially loved seeing her interactions with the Hollywood types – especially with Bradley Whitford, Jason Schwartzman and B.J. Novak trying to impress her. There was some heavy-handed make-up on Tom Hanks to make him look more like Walt Disney, and I felt that wasn’t necessary, however it didn’t bother me as much as it has in other films. And cry? Oh, so much so. And I so do enjoy a cry at a movie!
Saving Mr Banks was nominated for an Oscar for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score, a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama (Emma Thompson) and for BAFTAs for the Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film, the Anthony Asquith Award for Film Music, Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer (Kelly Marcel), Best Leading Actress (Emma Thompson) and Best Costume Design (Daniel Orlandi).