Kurt Russell and Samuel L Jackson in a scene from The Hateful Eight.
Kurt Russell and Samuel L Jackson in a scene from The Hateful Eight. Photo Contributed

Quentin Tarantino says Hateful Eight his best movie script

THE Hateful Eight is a cinematic gift that keeps on giving, says one of its stars.

Actor Kurt Russell reunites with director Quentin Tarantino in the winter western set in post-Civil War Wyoming and filmed on Ultra Panavision 70mm film.

Russell has seen the film seven times and still finds new details and nuances in the performances of his co-stars to appreciate.

"Quentin shoots a lot of things he doesn't use, so you don't know exactly what's going to be in the movie until you see it in full," Russell tells Weekend.

"I've seen the picture seven times now and every time I get to watch someone different. Once you know the story it's more fun to watch.

"I've done those movies where once the cat's out of the bag, it's still fun to watch but you're not going to learn anything new. This is a movie you're going to keep learning about it."

Tarantino calls it his best script to date and Russell, who starred in his 2007 movie Death Proof, agrees.

"He is absolutely in his prime right now," he says.

"It's going to be one of those movies, regardless of how it's perceived now, that 20 years down the road people will say writing-wise he was at the peak of his game."

Russell plays John "The Hangman" Ruth, a bounty hunter who is forced to hole up in Minnie's Haberdashery with his prisoner, Daisy Domergue, and a cast of shadowy characters as a blizzard approaches.

Everything about Ruth is big, from his booming voice to his salt-and-pepper moustache.

"He's somebody I've never done before," Russell says.

"Jack Burton in Big Trouble in Little China was kind of bombastic, but he was a truck driver. He wasn't a bounty hunter, and he wasn't someone who was living dangerously. He was blow-hardy but in a sweet way. This guy (John) is just blow-hardy. He's had to deal with these bad people for so long he doesn't care what anybody thinks about him. He's got to stay alive and keep his money.

"He also represents the cornerstone of American justice (because he takes his bounties alive). No matter what you've done you're going to have your day in court to say what you want to say."

Ruth suspects some of the strangers in the haberdashery are there to free Daisy from custody and he must rely on a shaky alliance with the two stranded travellers he picked up on the road - former soldier turned bounty hunter Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L Jackson) and the supposed new local sheriff Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins).

"He knows there's very little chance of him getting out of that situation," Russell says.

"There's a point in the movie when everything changes and suddenly it's like anything can happen now. It sets you on the Tarantino train to hell. Here it comes, I took my sweet time getting you here and now I'm going to play it out at breakneck speed."

The Hateful Eight is in cinemas now.

The Hateful Eight

Stars: Samuel L Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Walton Goggins, Tim Roth.

Director: Quentin Tarantino

Rating: R18+

Reviewer's last word: Director Quentin Tarantino combines action, humour and violence in his most well-crafted and well-written film yet.

Star Profile: Jennifer Jason Leigh

Quirky fact: After reading the script for the movie Backdraft (1991), Jennifer reportedly told its director, Ron Howard, that she wished that she could be the fire because it has the best part.

Best known for: Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Weeds, Miami Blues.

If you like this movie you'll like these: Django Unchained, Kill Bill Vol 1, The Revenant.

Quote: "I'd much rather be in a movie that people have really strong feelings about than one that makes a hundred million dollars but you can't remember because it's just like all the others."

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