How INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS Fits into Tarantino's Film Universe
Have you ever wondered why most characters in Quentin Tarantino's films have this amazingly heightened library of film knowledge and pop culture flowing out of their lips? It would be safe to assume that during one of his signature dialogue scenes, where everyone is throwing often obscure references around like confetti at a birthday party merely stems from Tarantino's own ability to do so manifesting itself in the characters he creates. Want a cooler/GENIUS explantation for this common gripe? Thanks to our friends at FirstShowing we have one.
Our own cohort Ben P. directs us to a Reddit user's detailed explanation of how the finale of Inglourious Basterds and that film's connection to Tarantino's movie universe is the cause for everyone's obsession with movies and violence:
(This is riddled with spoilers for Inglourious Basterds, Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, and True Romance so beware.)
As it turns out, Donny Donowitz, ‘The Bear Jew’, is the father of movie producer Lee Donowitz from True Romance – which means that, in Tarantino’s universe, everybody grew up learning about how a bunch of commando Jews machine gunned Hitler to death in a burning movie theater, as opposed to quietly killing himself in a bunker.Because World War 2 ended in a movie theater, everybody lends greater significance to pop culture, hence why seemingly everybody has Abed-level knowledge of movies and TV. Likewise, because America won World War 2 in one concentrated act of hyperviolent slaughter, Americans as a whole are more desensitized to that sort of thing. Hence why Butch is unfazed by killing two people, Mr. White and Mr. Pink take a pragmatic approach to killing in their line of work, Esmerelda the cab driver is obsessed with death, etc.You can extrapolate this further when you realize that Tarantino’s movies are technically two universes – he’s gone on record as saying that Kill Bill and From Dusk ‘Til Dawn take place in a ‘movie movie universe’; that is, they’re movies that characters from the Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs, True Romance, and Death Proof universe would go to see in theaters. (Kill Bill, after all, is basically Fox Force Five, right on down to Mia Wallace playing the title role.)What immediately springs to mind about Kill Bill and From Dusk ‘Til Dawn? That they’re crazy violent, even by Tarantino standards. These are the movies produced in a world where America’s crowning victory was locking a bunch of people in a movie theater and blowing it to bits – and keep in mind, Lee Donowitz, son of one of the people on the suicide mission to kill Hitler, is a very successful movie producer.Basically, it turns every Tarantino movie into alternate reality sci fi. I love it so hard.
I love that last sentence. It's actually how I plan to propose to my future wife. A similar explanation was given last year by Cracked. That article also offers up other family relations and other connections in Tarantino's film universes. For an explanation of Tarantino's different film universes and what characters can cross between them click here. The question now is, where does Django Unchained fit into all this?
What do you think of this explanation? Do you have any other theories or thoughts?