Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill was edited for content and length prior to its theatrical run, but Netflix’s The Hateful Eight: Extended Version proves the earlier film could finally be shown in its unedited glory. The initial release of Kill Bill was split into two volumes for logistical reasons, and the famous Crazy 88 fight scene was largely presented in black and white to avoid an NC-17 rating. There is a complete cut of both Kill Bill volumes presented as one movie called Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair, but aside from a handful of screenings, it has never seen a proper release.
Tarantino’s The Thing-inspired The Hateful Eight had a limited “roadshow” theatrical run in 2015, which featured much of the footage seen in the Extended Version, and the episodic Netflix special adds even more footage. Tarantino has also expressed interest in doing the same limited-series format for his latest film Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood. That film’s deleted scenes and novelization demonstrate that there is plenty of content left to be seen. Tarantino is eager to show audiences as much of his creations as possible, and he should turn his focus next to one of his earlier hits, Kill Bill.
If Netflix gave Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair the same treatment as The Hateful Eight, the complete saga could finally be available in a wide release. Like The Hateful Eight, Kill Bill is already split into chapters, which would make its transition into a mini-series with 20-40 minute episodes seamless. Kill Bill also has cut content—including a fight scene with the legendary Michael Jai White—that can be added into the already epic revenge saga. There’s more to be seen in the Kill Bill universe, and now is the best time to put in out into the world.
Netflix’s content can also get away with showing more graphic content compared to an R-rated theatrical film, as evidenced by the upcoming Blonde being rated NC-17. Netflix’s freedom would erase any worries that the Crazy 88 fight scene would be too violent to show in its original intended color version, or that the length of The Whole Bloody Affair would deter viewers. Binging seasons of TV has become the norm, so The Whole Bloody Affair can be as long as it needs to be to show the complete, unedited story. The Hateful Eight was already a long movie, but it was clear that Tarantino wanted to revisit that world and flesh out the characters even further, and Kill Bill deserves the same treatment.
The fully unedited version of Kill Bill has become an anomaly in Quentin Tarantino’s career, and the distributors could not make it work theatrically back in 2003. Now, making The Whole Bloody Affair a mini-series on Netflix would be a success because of audiences’ ability to consume the sprawling story in manageable episodic chunks. Tarantino has rarely been one to reduce his work to appeal to a wide audience, and he should jump at the chance to show the world the complete saga of Kill Bill in its unfiltered glory.
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Author: Samuel Lowery