If you like Quentin Tarantino… book review
When I received the book I expected little, thinking it might be a quick cash-in on Django Unchained or yet another mediocre take on the movie universe Quentin Tarantino moves around in. I was positively surprised and read the book in a day. The “If you like…” series I am not familiar with, but I like the concept. It is in fact not a book about the movie references in Tarantino’s films (like we do in our references guide or DK Holm did with his Case Book on Kill Bill), but it is in fact exactly what the title says: A book about movies that you might like, if you like Quentin Tarantino and his movies.
Once you accept that as the premise, the book opens up as a very light read, written in funny, very colloquial language, a text however that never gets boring. You can tell that the author Katherine Rife really digs and gets Quentin and his movies, she writes it from a lot of heart and understanding. If you so will, it’s a book by a nerd for nerds, or wanna-be-nerds. While the author goes movie by movie, she jumps around a bit seeing as many of his movies have similar inspirations (for example spaghetti westerns). All the while, she manages to fascinate and convey a love for newfound genres and rare gems, goes into a bit of where to get them and in which order to watch those. She touches on Asian movies, European movies, classic American exploitation film and a lot of others, some of them you will be familiar with, a lot of them you might not.
The book has one flaw, and that’s an obvious lack of editing/lectorate. I found a lot of plain mistakes in there, and overall I feel it could be a better book had there been more feedback and quality control involved. They might have even extended it to another 20 or so pages, to include more references. For example, she does quote The Spaghetti Western Database, and a few occasions she surely read our website, but also with all the interiews and quotations, I am missing footnotes or endnotes, URLs or references, those would have helped the book.
I have to say, I enjoyed reading “If you like Quentin Tarantino…” a lot, and closed it noting that I had some homework to do, especially in the Japanese film department. You will also find yourself skipping a few chapters that touch movies you already know, but I am sure there is more to discover. That’s what I love about Quentin Tarantino and his movies: they can be a starting point to a cinematic discovery tour that will leave you amazed.