May 3, 2016


The Hateful Eight: A Western Murder on The Orient Express

Score: 9/10 

Just like how the Orient Express finds itself disabled by the snow, The Hateful Eight finds its characters stranded in a habidashery during a snow storm. The story flows like an Agatha Christie novel but with the edginess of a Tarantino movie.

It even comes equipped with its own version of Hercule Poirot, just as calculating and clever, picking up on the smallest of clues from the onset; which led me down memory lane, to a game I used to play a lot as I muttered to myself, “Colonel Mustard in the living room with the pistol”… No… “Professor Plum in the kitchen with the poison”… “Miss Scarlet in the study with the rope”…

But this version of Sleuth Poirot comes with a dark streak, which leads to one of those uncomfortable scenes that makes us cringe yet applaud Tarantino’s brilliance. He has a knack for creating stressful scenes and offering the audience a release through the use of music—like he did in that infamous Pulp Fiction scene.


The movie begins with a bondsman transporting a woman to be hanged. They pick up a hitchhiker and the bondsman is antsy because the about-to-be-hanged-woman is worth a whole heck of a lot of money and he has no intention of letting anyone take his bounty.

As time goes on, the group grows. And the audience anxiously waits to see who could be making the first move on the bounty.  Not to mention that a collection of gun wearing strangers increases the chances of this thing getting mighty ugly.


A trademark in any Tarantino film. The characters have a lot to say. It’s not an easy task to make characters compelling through dialogue; but each character has its own voice and the stories they tell conflict with the other characters, creating conflict with each sentence.

My favorite quotes:
“You only need to hang mean bastards, but Mean Bastards, you-need-to-hang!” - by John "The Hangman" Ruth

“The man who pulls the lever, that breaks your neck will be a dispassionate man. And that dispassion is the very essence of justice. For justice delivered without dispassion, is always in danger of not being justice.” - by Oswaldo Mobray

Though it makes me ponder what the theme is after seeing the conclusion to the story. Is it about the injustice of it all or is it as simple as Frontier Justice feels really good.

The down side is the excessive use of the N-word. I understand it occurs after the civil war, but it’s difficult on the ears.

Racial divide

Tarantino boldly explores prejudices as race relations play out when the chess pieces of  confederate and union soldiers are placed inside the habidashery, creating an undercurrent of tension that bubbles up and bursts through the existing dynamic that already exists. It acts like a subplot that could easily become its own entity, but is woven throughout this mystery to keep us unbalanced.

But in the end, it comes together very well in a tense filled showdown. And when it’s all over, it left me wanting to revisit the story to put all the pieces together again.


About Lisa

Passionate about movies and writing. Hopes to someday be a published writer. So when she's not staring at the tube, she's spilling her imagination onto a blank page.

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