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Christoph Waltz: The glorious villain in 'Inglourious Basterds'

August 21, 2009 | 11:40 am

As a sadistic Nazi officer in Quentin Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds," Christoph Waltz is the most deliciously evil villain seen by movie-goers since Javier Bardem in "No Country for Old Men" and Anthony Hopkins in "Silence of the Lambs." Wait! Is it a coincidence that both of those roles were Oscar winners — in flicks that won best picture?

Christoph Waltz won best actor at the Cannes Film Festival in May for "Inglourious Basterds" and now "is probably also destined for an Academy Award nomination," according to Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times. But in which category? Waltz has more screen time than Hopkins, who won in lead, and a comparable amount to Bardem, who won in supporting. My guess is supporting, but I thought I'd torment the celebrated screen Nazi for his opinion.

Granted, Brad Pitt is dastardly in "Inglourious Basterds" too — ordering the beating (with a baseball bat) and scalping of German soldiers — but, hey, he's on our side.

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Comments

How does that interviewer get a job? Congratulations on your Oscar win, Mr. Waltz! You rock... can't wait to see you in many many more films.

He's a genius in acting. Nuff Said.

Mr. Waltz' performance was amazing. His thank you speech at the Critic's Awards was humble. He could give lessons. If he does not get an Oscar, then, as I suspected, the Awards are totally pointless. Instead of all of the others who are busy "campaigning", you should do an article on him and put his picture on the front page of this blog.

This man is so stunningly beautiful I want to marry him:)

Mr. Waltz was absolutely superbe in this movie!! I have not seen a performance like that in ages, especially in "hollywoodland"... but please could we stop praising the fact that he speaks more than one language! A lot of people (especially in Europe) do.
That being said I definetly think he deserves an OSCAR !!!!!

Waltz completely out-acted Pitt in Inglourious Basterds. He made Brad look bad. In fact, I think Brangelina should go back to acting school. He seemed like an infant compared to a true master. Pitt couldn't master an American accent and he's American. Waltz mastered 4 languages in the film- including Italian which he doesn't even speak in real-life. Damn, the only truly great American actor is DeNiro.

Lord almighty this guy is obtuse. Am I the only one who noticed that he wasn't listening one IOTA to Waltz's answers?? He kept trying to push his idea that Waltz should be fighting for an oscar when Waltz's responses flew blatantly in the face of that. It's as though he didn't notice!! And why the heck should an actor who's trying to make good movies, and not necessarily trying to be a celebrity, be so hot and bothered by an Oscar anyway? And the real question is why should some seventh-tier interviewer be so hot and bothered by it? This guy is a horrid, horrid waste of humanity. Oh my god. I try so hard not to hate people irrationally but people like him make it impossible!!!!!!!

I am just fascinated by this guy. His peformance was so memorable. He comes out of nowhere, but clearly he's completely comfortable in English. (And German, and French, and Italian -- just blows my mind.) I walked out of the theater thinking that he better be nominated for an Oscar -- hell, better win one! -- in whatever category.

What a great actor is Christoph Waltz. brilliant ,Brilliant!! I have seen the movie twice I aws so impressed with his language ability, I think he speaks about 4or5 languages. What a genius of a man, I vote for an oscar.

everyone is right this interviewer is a moron
as sure as i was javire bardem would win iam just a sure for this man

Dear Michael Hunter,
When giving your comments on a movie, please don't be a jack@$$ and give away the majority of the movie. As a movie lover, why would you do something so idiotic?

This is one of the most spellbinding and entertaining movies I have ever seen. I plan to see it again, and that is something I almost never say. The violence and bloodshed are merely a prop to advance the way we wish WWI had ended in a fairy tale way. What carries the show is Christoph Waltz's charmingly evil and multilingual Col. Hans Landau, toying smilingly with his victims--and the two female leads: the Jewish woman who escaped the original massacre only to succeed in helping destroy the entire Nazi High Command including the Furher; and the German actress double spy who helps in that plot and dies, literally by Landaus hands. The ending has a surprise twist, consistent with Landau's complete lack of moral grounding which is almost always masked by his ineffable charm. My main gripe is the lousy casting and two-dimensional performance of Brad Pitt. To me, Pitt played very much a bit (pun intended) part, and poorly at that. Imagine Clint Eastwood in Pitt's role! What a movie that would have been!

Terrible interview...the questions were beyond dumb.

Waltz is fantastic in Tarantino's movie. Best performance I've seen for a while. His language skills are amazing but his acting even moreso. By the way, whoever that guy is conducting the interview is an idiot.

man this interviewer is dreadful. waltz was cringing that whole time

Christof Waltz is class.
Unlike the moron interviewing him!

I have to say I still remember him playing along with Stocki and Rex on a Tv show about a dog that was working for the police. To see him in this role - I was blown away. Not just his language skills... it was the total package. He had it all and played everyone else in this movie on the wall. Amazing!

Christoph Waltz was incredible in this picture, and please, at least a Supporting Actor nomination; but please also look at Peter Capaldi in "In The Loop", which is another phenomenal performance.

I'm got the same feeling for Waltz walking out of IB on opening night as I did for Ledger after walking out of TDK last year. I wanna see it a couple more times just to watch Waltz again.

Never have I been so nervous about a villain's presence on screen and at the same time so entertained. Hated him and loved him. Scared me while all the while being very calm and soothing. Creeping me out while for some odd reason turning me on (lol).

If he doesn't win an Oscar I will divorce the Academy Awards.

what a stupid question by the interviewer...morgan freeman vs waltz....has nothing to do with the characters they are playing. it is all about the performance!!!

I saw the movie yesterday. Christoph Waltz gave one of the better performances I've ever seen. Absolutely spectacular. He should be handed the Oscar immediately. I hope to see much more of him in American films. As for the movie, I'll give it 3 1/2 out of 4 stars. Not quite a masterpiece. I think Brad Pitt was too far over the top, with too fake an accent. It seemed to me he was doing a bad impersonation of George W. Bush. I loved the Mike Myers and the Hitler characters. Very campy and with black comedy elements. I think the Mike Myers character should've been in more scenes as that scene with him reminded me a little of Dr. Strangelove andn that Kubrick black comedy style. I wish Tarantino would've made this film a straight-up black comedy. It was trying to get there but it just didn't make it. The Hitler scenes were black comedy in scope. You might think I'm crazy, but I think someone like Adam Sandler would've been better in the Pitt role. A real Jewish comedian.

The minute I walked out of the theatre I was like Col. Hans better get an oscar. In by opinion it should be for lead because he had at least as much maybe even more screen time than Brad Pitt. He was simply genius. If he doesnt you know its only because the Academy wants more American actors to win, seeing that in the past few years most of the winners have been non american.

It is a masterpiece!

Depicting the Nazis accordingly for their viciousness against the Jews and what most of us would have liked to have occurred against Hitler and his henchmen is in its proper perspectiveness.

The cinematography and color was awesome. Brad played a character and a half ... the film took turns no one would ever think of and David Bowie's song was so great ... as well as the rest of the soundtrack. The characters were terrific and the acting was excellent.

Tarantino's work is an absolute masterpiece. He indeed did invent a new shade of red! Really a stunning movie.

Guess it helps that my father fought at Normandy on D-Day through the Battle of the Scheldt in Holland and Belgium to Berlin and I have directed my own film about WWII. GETTYMOVIE is the Getty/Hitler trilogy.

It's directors like Tarantino that inspire one to push the envelope.

Even though nearly every critic in the country has touted Waltz's commanding performance as a leading one, his chances are better in the supporting category. Here's hoping the Academy comes through with a much-deserved nod to one of the best villain's in cinematic history.

He should go lead. I mean they're not going to reOscar Freeman so soon. Who else might be a problem? And besides, I'm fairly certain without counting that he had more lines that Pitt.

 

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