True originality is a many-splintered thing. Let us recall that Shakespeare was indebted to Marlowe, Picasso drew inspiration from African totems and Van Gogh dug ukiyoe prints. Then this thing called postmodernism gave artists carte blanche to quote, sample, appropriate, reinterpret -- you name it, the pomo crowd nicked it, and pop culture ate itself.

We could easily call director Quentin Tarantino a mixmaster of postmodern cinema, the kind of geek who scours secondhand shops in search of overlooked gems. He's not only a collector of the obscure and the classic, he wants to share them with a wider audience, by any means necessary. When he spins his platters, he wants the approval of the other geeks in the corner, but ultimately he's playing to the crowd, so the trick is get it all in the mix. With "Kill Bill: Vol. 2." he rarely loses the beat.

Case in point: For the backing track of the climactic scene of "Vol. 2," DJ Tarantino chose a "mash-up" instead of just an oldie. A mash-up is just that: one incongruous track mashed into another. Skilled practitioners of this cheeky bastard pop can make Britney Spears front The Strokes or have Cher complement Echo and the Bunnymen. Copyright infringements aside, anything is possible.