Quentin Tarantino is a tricky bastard, or in this case, “Basterd.” Just before the director of Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill releases a new movie, cranky critics always forecast doom or predict he will finally lose his edge. Then along came this summer’s Inglourious Basterds, a movie that aspires to rewrite World War II’s history—Tarantino style. In the movie a band of Nazi hunters called the Basterds, headed by Brad Pitt, team up with a young Jewish woman on the lam (Mélanie Laurent) to burn high-ranking Nazis alive in her theater. All the performers—including Diane Kruger as a German actress working as a British spy—nail their roles, but if Christoph Walz doesn’t get nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal of the cold-hearted “Jew Hunter,” don’t even bother sitting through the Academy Awards ever again.
There will be time to bring these little Basterds home for Christmas since Universal is releasing Tarantino’s latest (and finest?) on two-disc Blu-ray and DVD editions on December 15. The extras are expected to mirror the officially announced UK version, which includes extended and alternate scenes, a roundtable with Tarantino and Pitt, the full feature Nation’s Pride, an Inglourious Basterds poster gallery and much more. Now let’s just hope this year’s Academy Awards is peppered with Basterds of a different variety for a change.