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Kiss Kiss: An Ode to Quentin Tarantino

Few directors are so involved in their films today as to write, direct, act and produce them, ultimately shaping and sculpting the perfect vision of the story and its accoutrements. Quentin Tarantino is, personally, at the top of that list and does so effortlessly. His uncanny ability to craft a film that is not only distinctly his (re: stylized violence, spaghetti western tributes, Samuel L Jackson), but also to incorporate music that becomes synonymous with scene or character is seamless. The attention to detail and personal desire to produce films makes audiences crave for not only story and plot, but characters, effects, action and music. The stylistic and content elements draw in and capture audiences into scenes while the music and monologues linger and revitalize. And for that I dedicate him this.

Numerous Tarantino films have come and gone, each with their own definitive stand out piece. For Pulp Fiction its ‘Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon’ and the infamous diner dance sequence; Death Proof brings up ‘Down in Mexico’ and Inglourious Basterds arguably recounts ‘Green Leaves of Summer’. Each soundtrack listing is unique and eclectic, oddly commonplace within themes and moments of each respective film, while not being obvious or over played. Without a doubt, or seemingly so, Tarantino’s—and his revolving crew of production architects like the RZA and Robert Rodriguez—addition of ‘Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)’ by Nancy Sinatra as the Kill Bill Vol:I title track, has completely extinguished any references (outside anecdotal) other than that to this movie. This is the paramount example of Tarantino’s film’s abilities to take songs from either obscurity or displaced popular culture and reinvent them as integral and reminiscent of only that film. The fact that ‘Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)’ is actually a Cher song covered by Nancy Sinatra further alludes to its possessive nature; the song is synonymous to modern mainstream culture with Nancy Sinatra and in turn that version equates Kill Bill Vol: I.

To look to a director as not only a lover of film, but one of music and score, makes the movies more than just passively watching. There is an experience and moment where everything clicks, everything is perfect—if perfect was attainable—and that is the essence of film making. The culmination of trivia, style, character, plot and tributes makes Tarantino films worth watching and the added touches of soundtrack are what make them flawless. And with that this ode will end, reminded of falling snow and whistles of a nurse.

– Kaitlin McNabb