Quentin Tarantino “has made a glorious, silly, blood-spattered return” to the Cannes film festival, said Emma Jones in BBC News. The premiere of his new movie, Inglourious Basterds, “a comic revenge fantasy about Jewish freedom fighters bringing down the Nazis in 1944,” was very well-received here. Tarantino is “royalty” at Cannes, and “he remains the king of trashy cinema.” (watch the trailer for Inglourious Basterds)

But Inglourious Basterds is no Pulp Fiction, said Kirk Honeycutt in The Hollywood Reporter, which won the coveted Palme d’or at Cannes in 1994. Tarantino’s latest “merely continues the string of disappointments in this year's competition,” and Inglourious Basterds is missing the director’s signature “long stretches of wickedly funny dialogue, the humor in the violence, and outsize characters strutting across the screen.”

Inglourious Basterds was a thrill to see at Cannes, said Lisa Schwarzbaum in Entertainment Weekly. But once this movie sets off for American movie theaters, “it's unlikely that this joke-y, boyish, play-acted war-game fantasy” will “ever be inhaled with quite the right mixture of helium and nitrous oxide required to sustain the anticipatory hullaballoo.”