Why Quentin Tarantino Shouldn’t Apologize (Opinion)

Quentin Tarantino Black Lives Matter
Kena Betancur/Getty Images

If the hysterical overreaction by police unions across the country weren’t enough of a sign that Quentin Tarantino was right to speak out at last month’s Rise Up October protest, then surely the rumors about Harvey Weinstein’s reaction would be. The distributor may not be chastising Tarantino publicly, but Weinstein is said to be furious with the director for attending the New York rally, where he joined with other marchers in condemning police brutality — all just two months before the Dec. 25 unveiling of Tarantino’s much-anticipated new thriller, “The Hateful Eight.” With box office returns and award nominations waiting to be collected, this was apparently no time to incur a nationwide boycott — or, for that matter, to take a tough public stand on matters of grave moral and sociopolitical importance.

Such controversy is not new to Tarantino. Indeed, the words “such controversy is not new to Tarantino” were used by Bret Easton Ellis in his recent, controversial interview with Tarantino for T magazine, in which the filmmaker took swipes at Ava DuVernay and Kathryn Bigelow before making some obnoxious declarations about his cultural standing in the black community. “If you’ve made money being a critic in black culture in the last 20 years you have to deal with me,” he told Ellis. “You must have an opinion of me. You must deal with what I’m saying and deal with the consequences.”

And deal they have. “Django Unchained” (2012), Tarantino’s most recent and commercially successful film, was taken to task by many for approaching the subject of slavery not with the solemnity of a prestige picture, but with the blood-sloshing irreverence of an exploitation movie. Crude revenge narratives and charnel-house aesthetics may be par for the course from the director of “Pulp Fiction” and “Kill Bill,” but what really rankled critics (and not only black critics) about “Django Unchained” was its reckless, audacious and profligate use of the N-word. It’s not the first time Tarantino’s fondness for that particular taboo has raised hackles (Spike Lee took issue with it years ago after “Jackie Brown”), and it remains, for many, the most egregious example of cultural appropriation by a white filmmaker who sometimes fancies himself a black one.

We can only speculate as to what was running through Tarantino’s mind when he chose to attend a Rise Up October gathering in New York on Oct. 24, where he took the stage to honor the victims and their families (among other speakers, including Cornel West, Eve Ensler and Chris Hedges). Was he trying to make amends for, or divert attention from, the statements he made in that earlier interview? Or was Tarantino — in his usual brash, outspoken, shoot-from-the-hip manner — trying to show not only that he was concerned about the issues at stake, but also that his identification with black culture transcends a mere difference in skin color? After years of talking the talk, perhaps this was his way of walking the walk: Outsider or insider, honorary brother or cultural parasite, he chose to take a stand on behalf of the African-American men and women who have been targeted by cops in such disproportionate numbers, even if the matter of race remained largely implicit in his brief onstage remarks.

“I’m a human being with a conscience,” Tarantino told the crowd of about 300 protestors. “And when I see murder, I cannot stand by, and I have to call the murdered the murdered, and I have to call the murderers the murderers.” The word “murderer” may not be quite as inflammatory as an N-bomb, but you can still understand, up to a point, why so many in law enforcement were so infuriated by it. Tarantino may be one of our most gifted screenwriters, but he is far from the most delicate. The violence in his movies has never been merely a matter of plucked eyeballs and severed ears; it’s there in the very language of his characters — the badass phrasings, the whip-crack rejoinders, the menacing pauses, the slurs and threats that get merrily tossed about like foul-mouthed grenades. Tarantino’s rally speech may have been extemporaneous, but even his off-the-cuff remarks cut deep; they reflected a master’s practiced ability to shock and wound.

The vehemence of Tarantino’s verbal assault is not in dispute, though the target of it very much is. As the director recently told the Los Angeles Times, “All cops are not murderers. I never said that. I never even implied that.” It’s sad that he even had to clarify. In the heat of their outrage, none of Tarantino’s attackers seem to have grasped that his words were directed specifically at those responsible for the deaths of Michael Brown, Amadou Diallo, Akai Gurley, Freddie Gray, Antonio Guzman Lopez, Janisha Fonville, Justus Howell, Darius Pinex, and the many other victims of police violence who were honored at the October rally. It shouldn’t require any stretch of the imagination to identify these men and women as “the murdered,” or to suggest that their killers deserve to be held to account — a statement that hardly amounts to a blanket condemnation of all those who protect and serve.

But the logic of Tarantino’s critics doesn’t allow for that level of discernment, to judge by their call for a boycott of his movies — a call that has spread from one organization to the next like wildfire. (As of this writing, police organizations in New York, New Jersey, Chicago, Philadelphia and Los Angeles have joined the boycott, along with the National Assn. of Police Organizations and the National Border Patrol Council.) To criticize one member of the force, apparently, is to criticize them all. “You’re either with us or against us” is a dangerous mindset for any group of people to hold, particularly for those in law enforcement — a profession that should demand the highest levels of accountability and self-examination. At the very least, it should require a thicker skin.

Tarantino is not the first Hollywood celebrity to speak out about the use of deadly force by police. But he is the only one who has drawn this ferocious and coordinated a rebuttal; his words, as they so often do, clearly struck a nerve. And the angriest reactions seem to stem from a personal fury that it’s this guy, of all people, who has the nerve to speak out — it’s not just a matter of “How dare he say this,” but “How dare he say this.” After all, Quentin Tarantino makes sensationally violent, hugely influential movies about mobsters and thugs and assassins and robbers and rapists and vigilantes, movies where people get murdered and mutilated in all manner of grotesque and over-the-top ways. Patrick Lynch, head of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Assn. of the City of New York, is hardly the first person to opine that Tarantino is “a purveyor of degeneracy,” someone who “makes a living glorifying crime and violence.” (As someone who’s generally a fan of people sticking to their chosen fields of expertise, I have to say I’ll take Tarantino’s social criticism over Lynch’s movie reviews any day.)

The question of whether Tarantino’s cinema serves to promote or pacify a culture of violence has been debated since the release of “Reservoir Dogs” more than 20 years ago, and it will continue to rage long after he’s shot his final frame. The carnage in his films should never be taken lightly; nor should it be shrugged off with the condescending, anti-intellectual justification “It’s only a movie.” But neither should it be interpreted in a vacuum, or subjected to the crude reading that something that thrills and excites us necessarily amounts to a glorification. There are relatively few cops to be found in the lawless landscape where most of Tarantino’s movies unfold. But there is, even within the simplified morality of his characters’ worldview, an abiding fascination with the pursuit of justice — messy, primitive justice, to be sure, but justice nonetheless. And it’s that impulse that drives and connects almost all his films, from the payback-thriller templates of “Kill Bill,” “Inglourious Basterds” and “Django Unchained” to the postmodern morality play of “Pulp Fiction.”

There may be something incongruous about a director whose films are known for their ridiculously high body counts uttering the words “When I see murders, I do not stand by.” But you can only call it hypocrisy if you fail to grasp that there’s a difference between real violence and movie violence, and that a person’s moral and political consciousness can’t be reduced to the sum of his or her creative output — even when that creative output is as distinctive and recognizable as Quentin Tarantino’s. Which brings us to the other, altogether more troubling reason why I think this particular filmmaker has been singled out for his comments, and why so many have joined the campaign to suppress him.

No one batted an eye when Kanye West or Azealia Banks or Samuel L. Jackson lent their names to the cause of Black Lives Matter. But Tarantino is, not to put too fine a point on it, a white man. He’s a popular, critically acclaimed, award-winning white filmmaker whose bad-boy sensibility has long been embraced and absorbed by the mainstream. He is, for all his nose-thumbing tendencies, an establishment’s anti-establishment filmmaker. And in light of his popularity, the call to boycott “The Hateful Eight” and his other films feels not just spiteful and retaliatory, but desperate — as if his critics are trying not just to punish someone for exercising his right to free speech, but also to apply enough financial pressure to cow him into silence or spur a retraction. Of course, as Forbes film critic and box office pundit Scott Mendelson has astutely pointed out, any attempts to stifle Tarantino will probably have the undesired effect of merely boosting his profile and that of “The Hateful Eight,” to the point that one might reasonably wonder if this entire brouhaha was one calculated Weinstein masterstroke.

My own sense — borne out by his defiant response to those who would shut him down — is that nobody really tells Tarantino what to do. A lot of people, black and white, probably wish he would shut up about race already, but as we’ve seen, the very cultural cachet that he sometimes wields as an entitlement within the black community can also be a highly useful tool for amplifying that community’s call for justice. It would be even more useful, and unassailable, if other artists of an equivalent stature were following his example. Who knows, it might even compel his critics in law enforcement to spend as much time policing their actions as they do the free-speech rights of celebrities. What once read like an instance of swaggering self-regard — “You must deal with what I’m saying and deal with the consequences” — now carries the unmistakable feel of an invitation. Maybe the real problem isn’t what Quentin Tarantino is saying, but that there aren’t more people saying it with him.

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  1. catherinetodd3 says:

    notify me

  2. catherinetodd3 says:

    ” Maybe the real problem isn’t what Quentin Tarantino is saying, but that there aren’t more people saying it with him.” Amen!

  3. Keith Carrizosa says:

    I don’t get what’s with all the black-culture-misappropriation talk/implications and not just giving Tarantino the benefit of the doubt that, maybe, just maybe he actually LIKES black people and black culture, haha. But okay, I’ll do a little bit more journalism for you, such as by pointing out that Tarantino has probably had threesomes with black chicks at his house (or at least has slept with probably many). Stuff like that along with his movies and public alliances with the black community should have told you all you needed to know, but apparently it has not, and it was all part of his “black parasite” plan, haha.

    Basically, on this whole matter what I think we need is not people simply taking sides, “with us or against us” mindsets or not, but an actual policy change as it pertains to police training, which, as they are now, make it LEGAL for a police officer to kill someone for just THEORETICALLY threatening their lives. Just look at the Mike Brown case, and how the officer shot him from about 30 feet away after he (allegedly) started running at him (not to mention the fact that Mike Brown didn’t look like he could run very fast), which, really, was, if true, a suicide move. If it was a suicide move, then it shouldn’t be the officer’s job to dish out life-ending implicit requests. Maybe officer’s should also be equipped with non-lethal attachments for guns. Then there was the guy in the wheelchair recently whom it took about 2 minutes just to lift the gun; shot dead. They could have just walked up behind him and knocked it out of his hand or something. Then another, just DAYS after the Mike Brown shooting, there was some St. Louis police officers who shot that homeless-looking black guy who straggled over to multiple armed officers from 15 feet away, once again, dishing out the suicide requests, when it clearly looked like any one of them could have easily disarmed the guy with a club; but, hey, theoretically, that guy could have killed them, had he reached them in the 20 seconds it took him to walk up to them and stab them from 15 feet away. Then there was the guy just grabbing his driver’s license. (Sorry I don’t remember all of their names, but, I don’t think their names were even given in tv reporting).

    The way the training is now, yes, it does allow for the possibility of racist “murders” but even unconscious racist murders or, as I’ve been saying, simply “theoretical” life-threatening kills; just to dispute possible unconscious racism a cop could decide to kill a white guy for stretching just to balance it out and say, “Oh, I thought he was raising a hidden knife, which could have killed me, had he succeeded to walk the necessary 15 foot distance”; or, “Oh, he stretched with his silver cell phone in his hand and he looked a little like Bruce Lee and like he was getting ready to adroitly fling some throwing knives at me, but, hey, I ain’t racist towards black people. Do black guys look like Bruce Lee: No!”

  4. Ricardo Montelban says:

    Tarantino’s head is enormous. How does his neck support such a huge mass of flesh and bone? We could learn so much from dissecting this creature, I say we do it in the name of science.

  5. Mike Batton says:

    You do have the right to question police tactics but not call them murderers. QT needs to know that police are people too and they have every right to call for a boycott. This is not a threat it is free speech, just like he is claiming. Most individuals such as he do not think before they speak because they believe they are always right. Guess what , police (people) have the right to disagree and take a stance against him.i stand with the police. Groups that demonstrated get upset when you group them as a whole when talking about a race and criminal statistics, police get upset when you group them as a whole too. I agree that there are bad police officers but when you put them all in that bad category, you are wrong and get what you deserve.

    • Molly says:

      Agreed. Moreover, most of the names Tarantino cited were resisting arrest. That’s a fact. Just ask Eric Holder & the Justice Department.

  6. Victoria says:

    Variery,

    I don’t know if anyone read the New York Post article today, November 4, 2015 by Chris Perez and Jamie Schram. The article ran “Aw, Blue Meanies, Taratino Whines Cops Out To Get Him”.

    I haven’t followed this story. Clearly he doesn’t want his movie boycotted. But now here is this James Pasco, the Executive Director of the Fraternal Order of Police, threatening Tarantino in the press so deliberately?

    The Police Department’s only job is to protect us, not kill our children or threaten anyone. Clearly something has gone incredibly wrong that this many innocent people have been killed. Maybe its just the media. Maybe it’s our mayor. But threatening our artists in the press is hardly the solution.

    Inoocent people have been killed. They are somebody’s children. The police have now been killed. But the police to be using their position to threaten anyone in the press, threatening to ruin their business is just wrong.

    Innocent children were killed. We have all stood up and said this is wrong. We are looking for an explanation.

    No one thought the hateful things people were screaming in the streets of New York City were okay, ” What Do We Want, Dead Cops”. It wasn’t right. It was shocking. It was one of the ugliest moments in this country’s history. It was dark. It was outrageous. And it is not acceptable on any level.

    However, instead of James Pasco using his position to threaten anyone, which may very welll be the human response to this unthinkable climate in this country, maybe Mr. Pasco could use the platform Tarantino has given him to address what is going on in this country.

    No one blames “The Police”. The police have kept us all safe from Terrorists. Our city is safe. They are also “The Authorities”. Maybe they need a thicker skin to rise above it and not assume people think the worst. Clearly it isn’t easy. Maybe Mr. Pasco could speak to that?

    I sincerely hope I am not the only one who thinks Mr. Pasco could speak to the police’s sentiments over innocent people being killed and the steps, if any, that can be taken to prevent it or honestly tell us what is going on for the police instead of joining in on the bashing. And pretending the police are above reproach doesn’t work.

    Ray Kelly is a brilliant man. He protected us from the Terrorist. We are safe. He said Mayor Bill de Blasio was way off base. He spoke to the issues. He said Mayor de Blasio was wrong about “Broken Windows”. Maybe Mr. Pasco could get back to that script instead of the rhetoric Sharpton and Mayor de Blasio are spewing incensing this hatred toward the Police Department. Clearly the police are just as upset over what has happened as everyone else. Maybe Mr. Pasco could just say that .

    We are all just looking for some level of clarity when leadership is so lacking. Tell us something we can understand. Were these “Bad Apples”? Were they reprimanded? Were the police scared in bad neighborhoods? Was there overreach? Was it dealt with? Was there something the police could do differently? Are there not enough police on the streets?

    Threatening Tarantino, an artist, guided by a level of sensitivity Mr. Pasco may never understand is not the solution. Nothing the police could possibly do to Tarantino is going to stop innocent people from getting killed or hatred.

    The thugs on the streets that killed the innocent police officers were “Murders” Mr. Pasco. Isn’t this really what Tarantino said? Were we meant to excuse killing those innocent men in blue away too?

  7. Larry says:

    Tantamount to yelling “Fire” in a crowded theater, Tarantino’s comment is one for which he should absolutely beg forgiveness. Tarantino indicted every police officer in the country with his comment, particularly at this time in this media climate. He knew it when he said it. He knew which outrageous button to push for maximum effect (as he has been doing in his films since the beginning). What he did was to put a target on the back of every single law enforcement worker in this country and flame the fires in the deluded minds of every single professional victim in this country. Eldridge Cleaver said it best, “If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem!” Tarantino has made himself a major part of the problem and an incendiary around which all manner of maniacs will gather. Tarantino should be prosecuted for reckless endangerment; he has put at mortal risk far more people than all the drunk drivers in this nation combined. He certainly should be condemned and censured in some manner.

  8. tommy says:

    don’t know why Q.T. gets grief and jamie foxx (”blacks better than whites”) kanye west(”bush killing blacks”) don’t. I’m sure YOU gave foxx and kanye grief wen they made there racîst comments.

  9. Gibson Hall says:

    I can’t believe I read 2/3rds of that article before I realized what a waste of time I was committing. This will be the last time I read social political commentary in Variety.

  10. Every film critic has a political opinion that bleeds through a movie review; that’s human.

  11. Scott says:

    I question whether it is appropriate for a film critic to now editorialize about Mr. Tarantino and his actions. It seems reasonable, now, that every subsequent review by Mr. Chang can be scrutinized for his political opinions. Slippery slope…

  12. Ian Boyd says:

    Quentin Tarantino did what hundreds of others did at the rally in question: point a finger at a select few police officers who killed without due cause. It’s upsetting to know, but the fact is that some people (in various professions) abuse their power – no one is infallible, not even the police.

  13. Rex says:

    Couldn’t wait to see Hateful Eight before. REALLY can’t wait to see it now. Conservatard supporters of trigger-happy sociopath cops are gonna be even MORE sore when it does as well as any of Tarantino’s other films. I’m not the biggest fan of the man himself and his weird-o mannerisms, but I’m a long-time fan of FREE SPEECH, but clearly the right wingers prefer to be told what they can and can’t say, and what they should and shouldn’t SEE, by enforcers of the law just like they do in communist countries and other dictatorships. Oh, and incidentally, I DO believe there was justification in at least some of the killings of the names listed in paragraph six, so this is not the “black and white” issue the cops and their right-wing whacko supporters want it to be.

    • Molly says:

      Uh-Huh, I’m black. So, how long has your skull been lacking brain cells? He called Police Officers Murders and the criminals that were resisting arrest, the victims. HELLO? What part of the equation does your empty cranium not understand?

      It’s “Incorrect-Hate-Speech” not “Free Speech.” You Lib’s ALWAYS bitch and moan about “Hate-Speech,” until Liberal’s do it. Suddenly, it’s “Free-Speech.” Grow a brain, hypocrite.

  14. Molly says:

    Thank you Mr. Chang for showing how Anti-American you are. Unfortunately, dopes like you perpetuate dangerous issues that do NOTHING but cause deaths, on both sides of the argument.

    It’s shocking how brazen you are, to expose yourself as Anti-Cop & Anti-Authority. Let us guess for a moment, that you have a better idea. Didn’t think so. Bitching and moaning is what you’re best at. Most Liberals are good at having no suggestions, to make things better.

    One of my best friends (A Cop) was shot nine times by criminals you support, instead of People that risk their lives every day to keep the peace.

    I will no longer trust your judgement on anything, much less film critiques.

  15. Berke Zane says:

    Mr. Chang, there was plenty of chatter about Kanye and Samuel Jackson in regards to BLM. And as far as Quentin claiming he was being taken out of context, that’s debatable of course, but what about the context of the timeliness of his participation in the NYC rally? Days after a cop was killed in NYC? It seems that maybe Quentin should also be suspected of miscalculating his reasons for making such a high profile event. Did he think it would win the hearts of an entire segment of population that might decide to check out his movie? How many other rallies has Quentin participated in? He’s been an activist? Hardly. As respondents to criminal complaints or 911 calls, even if restraint can be questioned, it has to be accepted that the word ‘murderer’ is harsh. In the four day wake of Randolph Holder being murdered on the job, the word murderer is at least inflammatory. Quentin was using his media might for attention as well as his media pass for his own use of insensitive language in his films and the reasoning behind it as art. And as far as the media’s bias, sure, Quentin didn’t say all cops are murderers, and the press have been out in force to report that. But Trump didn’t say all Mexican’s were murderers and rapists and drug smugglers. Not even close. But that will stay on his record as though he did. Regardless of the facts. I see nothing out of the ordinary or even heavy-handed in the calling by cops for a boycott. That’s their most egalitarian reaction to a media darling with the clout of Hollywood behind him.

  16. IT + IT says:

    Hollywood now stands 100% EXPOSED
    as being 100% scripted, directed, coordinated and RUN ny INTEL.

    That incudes —EVERYONE— all the time

    It’s been the case since WWII

    IT also accounts for the glaring lack of depth or second acts from the ‘artists’

    LOL

  17. Jack says:

    Weinstein has good reason to worry. I, for one, will never spend another nickel on a Tarantino movie.

  18. K.D. says:

    Sadly, this is a classic case of a viral, wire services quote taken out of context. When you see his words in print, it automatically says he thinks all police shootings are murder. Which is the too often neglected job of news editors across the country who failed to connect his comments to those recorded, in question, vs. all police shootings as it reads to the unknowing. Quite an easy gaffe to occur, and more so, to correct.

  19. Keef Grimes says:

    Cops are only people, just men and women. We give specific people uniforms and extended rights, and are told to worship them because we need them to keep us safe. A uniform doesn’t make someone courageous, or strong, nor will it make a man honest. To believe that is insanity. Think about the risks of having PEOPLE with the right to kill at will….. And their profession of law enforcement. Didn’t even make the top 15 most dangerous jobs in america. So even if they were all worthy of the honor and recognition they receive, there is literally no reason for it.

  20. Nick says:

    When you mention Michael Brown as a victim of Police brutality you lose all credibility. His death was investigated by the DOJ and if they could have found any wrong doing by Officer Wilson they would have so At least try to give the appearance of being impartial.

  21. Amaskedman says:

    He shouldn’t appologize if he doesn’t mean it.

    First off, its rare to see a truly meaningfully protest against a Hollywood figure. Let’s face it, the bar is pretty high. Given all the craps coming out of their mouths, its unusually that anything gets attention.

    Having said that. Suck it up. The left is CONSTANTLY protesting something. Apparently they “can fish it but can’t take it”. As for QT claiming they are trying to silence him, look around who you are protesting with. All they do is level the charge of racism to silence people.

    Lastly, people have reached PC fatigue. America is tired of PC crap being shoved down thier throats.

    It won’t hurt his chance at awards. Hollywood is left, he’s good.

  22. Michael Anthony says:

    From Chicago: Yes, we have bad cops here. And they’ve done some awful things. But they are the minority, a huge minority. But protest the do, Black Lives Matter, Tarantino, and the rest. In the meantine, the hundreds of murders in Chicago this year have been mostly black on black. Yesterday, it was a 9 year old boy. Wheres the outrage? Where’s Black Lives Matter? Where’s Tarantino? If course we have Spike Lees film coming out that will probably blame everyone but those truly responsible–the parents of these teenage gang thugs!! Instead you focus on the cops.

    Shame on Variety for giving Tarantino a pass. Hus remarks came just after another cop was gunned down. If a Variety staffer was gunned down and the next day Tarantino made a remark against your profession, would you give him a pass? I doubt it and you owe an apology to the overwhelming majority if law enforcement officers!

  23. Alex says:

    His flick opens the same day as “STAR WARS’, it’s about 8 gunfighters stuck in a cabin…it’s going to bomb without the boycott.

    • Mm says:

      Unless you are a psychic, you don’t know sh*t. Not everyone is interested in Star Wars.

      • Rex says:

        Well said. Frankly, Hateful Eight will have just as much success as his previous films. He doesn’t make Star Wars style blockbusters, so anyone coming on here at that point bragging about how much more money Star Wars makes would have to be an utter MORON with no clue as to how studios often book premium fare AGAINST the big blockbusters because they know not everyone wants to see those kinds of shows. Hateful Eight, like most of his previous pictures, WILL have legs that take it past the holiday season too, so while opening week numbers will undoubtedly be significantly lower than those for Star Wars, it will pull in a respectable haul over the long run. Can’t wait for BOTH films, to be honest.

  24. BillUSA says:

    I don’t have a problem with someone speaking out about victims of murder. What I do have a problem with is the broad brush stroke he used to bring attention to a serious issue. He comes off as a reactionary loudmouth with little regard for the consequences of his stance and language he uses to bring attention to the problem he thinks his actions are meant to solve.

    He has a right to be wrong, to make violent movies, to pretend to be of another race and to embarrass his Father. What his supporters fail to understand is that all of this is coming off as being against ALL policemen and subsequently gives some people “reason” to disrespect them or worse. Then, when some innocent cop gets attacked for no reason (like those who were murdered recently in NYC) Tarantinophiles will say it’s justifiable. Then the snowball starts its downhill roll.

    I’m not against what good Tarantino might be trying to accomplish, but he is being destructive about it. This nation needs to pull together, but activists like Tarantino are only serving to widen the gaps.

  25. Sean kenedy says:

    In my humble opinion, which includes my support for all the men and women of our Police departments. My understanding of what Tarantino said, which is clear; is that he’s speaking about those individual Police officers who have committed fatal crimes under the color of authority for their own hateful reasons. He’s not saying that ALL policeman are guilty of those crimes! Query, in the unforgivable My Lai Massacre in Vietnam committed by twenty six American soldiers who were found guilty and convicted of killing 22 villagers by the American Courts; does that mean that every decent American soldiers who wore the uniform in Vietnam were also guilty of those unconscionable crimes? Undoubtedly NOT!! Tarantino is not saying that we should not respect or honor all those brave men and women who wear the police uniform rather that those who use their hate under the color in such a manner which unlawful acts were done while the officials were purporting or pretending to act in the performance of their official duties. In other words, the unlawful acts must consist of an abuse or misuse of power which is possessed by the official only because he is an official.

    • Rex says:

      Well said, Sean Kenedy. If only the conservatards and police organizations could think outside their myopic, hateful (ahem) little boxes . . .

  26. Michael says:

    The litlle man spews lib nonsense to impress his idiotic Hollywood lib buddies. Harvey gets pissed off seeing his big $$ investment in another QT boring yack fest and orders hims to take it back. He does.
    In hypocritical lib land $$ rules.

  27. kanga mcnulty says:

    I’m glad the cops are going to boycott. I’d rather not have a bunch of cops at the movie with me anyway.

    • Molly says:

      I’ve never heard a more stupid comment in my entire 56 years of life.

      • manorborn says:

        Appears sarcasm is a concept that has not quite registered with you. Not to mention the real possibility that you apparently don’t read much…there are about 20 stupider comments right on this page alone. And btw what’s so stupid about not wanting a bunch of cops sitting near you at a movie? Reality is that wanting them all around you creates a pretty disturbing portrait of your psyche.

  28. Thetoxicavenger says:

    It’s sad that everything has to be political this year, people mention liberals or the left as if they all hate the police. It’s not wrong to want to strive for better accountability. Isn’t that what we always do as humans? Strive to do better at certain things? It’s not a left vs right issue. It’s a human issue and dialogue is healthy and not a bad thing. tarantino won’t and should never apologize for being who he is. Sick of this Twitter culture where everyone thinks they are entitled to bring other people down for not agreeing with them. F*ck this boycott. It’s so childish. Everyone needs to grow up and realize we are not all the same and that uniqueness is precisely what unites us.

  29. Gary Middleton says:

    Too lazy to read this article but I saw Q expand on his points in the L.A. Times and found what he said to be extremely fair and important.

  30. uninvited says:

    No Justin, those people were not “murdered”. That is the point.

  31. Oliver says:

    The last QT movie I cared for was ‘Jackie Brown’, and the less said about his arrogant opinions of other filmmakers the better — but he’s right about this.

  32. Bill says:

    Wow, I hope Justin Chang never needs the Police… for anything.

    • Rex says:

      Why? Are you suggesting the police use their status to settle scores and ignore the needs of anyone who dares to be critical of them? Funny, but that’s very much in line with the criticisms being leveled at them in recent years. Good to know you support their thuggish, totalitarian behavior.

    • Dee Cee says:

      What a Teabaggy statement Bill. We dunt kneed no stinkin first ‘mendment anyway, this is ‘merica goldarnit.

  33. TM says:

    I rarely agree with QT and do not like his movies. I also don’t he is one of “our most gifted screenwriters”. He certainly is the one with the most provocative, debased and violent oeuvre of any mainstream filmmaker – and the socio-political implications are the same as of Popeye or The Godfather. They are accidental and an accessory to the personal obsessions of a deranged mind. Mind you, deranged does not exclude ingenious.

  34. tlsnyder42 says:

    Tarantino’s comments were hysterical AND libelous. The Left continues to lie about incidents like Ferguson, the Trayvon Martin case, and even the Garner case in NYC, while hundreds of African Americans are gunned down by other African Americans, and Hispanics suck their neighbors into drug addiction for profit and allow illegal alien criminals to roam American streets searching for poor victims, or getting drunk and killing people with their vehicles. Tarantino continued to push the false leftist narrative about Ferguson, while calling police murderers. His movies are gratuitously ultraviolent and obscene, even when he has something interesting or even uplifting to say. His moral conscience is warped. By the way, nobody criticizes black leftist stars because Democrats, liberals and leftists love to play the race card to slander, libel and demonize Republicans ad conservatives who simply but firmly disagree with their secular-oriented approach to serious issues. If leftists and their toadies in the electorate cleaned up their own communities, maybe the police wouldn’t have to target them to help the poor, honest, hard-working, and innocent civilians living in those communities and being attacked by thugs, gangs, selfish drug dealers, and illegal alien cheaters and lawbreakers. Stop believing liberal/leftist lies, libels and exaggerations about police, crime, “race,” “gender,” “class,” immigration, etc.!

    • The Truth says:

      Good work. You managed to hysterically demonize African Americans, Hispanics, poor communities, and the left in your comment. Fortunately, you have a constitutional right to exercise free speech, as does Tarantino. You and George Zimmerman seem aptly suited for a hot and heavy bromance.

    • Oliver says:

      Hi, Huckabee! Shouldn’t you be out campaigning or something?

  35. eddie willers says:

    No more Tarantino movies for me. I will not support a bigoted idiot.

  36. John Th says:

    Quentin doubles down on stupid

  37. rojodi says:

    Those equating his appearance at an ANTI-Police BRUTALITY rally with him hating police need to sit and rethink your logic. You can be against the brutality and NOT against police.

    • John Th says:

      ” You can be against the brutality and NOT against police.”

      Then be specific about which “brutality” case you are referring to; instead of throwing “murderer” bombs on stage and then walking off.

  38. vms says:

    When actual logic is in play…sure is. But neither your comments nor Tarantino’s comments actually have logic.

  39. vms says:

    This hateful man has lost the support of my ticket/DVD purchases. He shouldn’t apologize, I already know it will be insincere if he does. So, I’ll take my hard earned money and go elsewhere.

    Buh-Bye Quentin

  40. ed blank says:

    You’re an idiot. But we knew that.

  41. nads says:

    Hysterical overreaction? You liberals are the problem. Police have a tough job and if you act like a fool expect to be treated like a fool – nobody gives a fawk what color your skin is. Hollywood liberals and Democrat socialists need to check themselves before they wreck themselves. Racism is here to stay because Democrats need it to stay relevant – the same Jesse Jackson/Al Sharpton/Jeffrey Katzenberg/Chris Dodd/Obama playbook from 40 years ago.

    • Java says:

      When you begin your comment with “you liberals” and throw in buzzwords like “Hollywood liberal and Democrat socialists”, it’s pretty clear that your intention is not to look behind the logic of what Tarantino is saying, but instead create a veneer of pseudo-intellectual superiority that a lot of internet conservatives do.

      Is your point just that police have a tough job? No one is refuting that. The question is why aren’t people being held accountable here. Race is incidental in that there is a perception that police are generally, and factually, more hostile towards members of a certain race. This perception stems from the idea that Police and typically, and by following your logic in pigeon-holing particular professions as part of a specific political mindset, racist, red neck conservatives. When you single out the only white man who has spoken out about Black Lives Matter, that doesn’t help your cause, and hence, it’s not that democrats need racism to stay (do you see a single white democrat in that protest by the way?), but rather that this incident has proven itself to be a reason that racism is STILL relevant. Especially when the police, who apparently have a hard enough job, do less about correcting institutional racism and removing stereotypes and more organising a boycott spanning several nationwide institutions and 300,000 members.

      Priorities? They go beyond pseudo-intellectual meandering and political allegiances. I’ll let you know that i’m neither a democrat nor a republican, and i’m not a socialist in case you try to go down that angle. Use logic next time.

      • Bill says:

        I call nonsense on your assertion that police are more hostile towards certain races.

        If you don’t break the law, the police are not hostile and in fact are friendly.

        Some officers are of course bad as members are of any group, but labeling police as a group as having a problem is no better than labeling liberals or conservatives as groups with problems.

        I like Tarentino’s films and was really looking forward to Ultra Panavision 70, but value our police officers more than I do his rants.

  42. Joe Smart says:

    Police overreaction to Tarantino’s comments only serves to show how terrified they are at the possibility of being held accountable for their actions. As long as high profile celebrities (particularly white ones) don’t join in anti-police brutality protests they are apparently easy enough to dismiss by police departments who clearly feel no heat from them. The fact that Mr. Tarantino made them so furious should not inspire an apology from the filmmaker–it should inspire other high profile artists and public figures who are not black (and easy to dismiss for that reason, apparently) to join in the call for police accountability, which is long overdue in this country.

  43. That was pretty even-handed, not what I expected from the title. What you might have addressed a little better was our apology culture where (a) people get offended about something someone has said using their First Amendent right; and (b) demand a public apology; and (c) the problem that the person in question was addressing rightly or wrongly fades into the background with little or nothing done about it. It’s not Tinseltown, it’s Tinselworld these days.

  44. Greg Marotta says:

    FOX with its roster of FAKE tough guys (Hannity, Dietl, Fuhrman, The Uncle Tom Sheriff from Milwaukee, et al) is leading the charge here. ‘Nough said.

    • Bill says:

      I love how any non-liberal black person is labeled as an “Uncle Tom,” as apparently all need to toe the Democrat party line or have sold out their race. How pathetic.

  45. Michelle says:

    The brutality that Q is facing from the police only solidifies their “thug” mentality. This is one man willing to do more than turn a blind eye to what is happing to an entire community. The entire GOP Presidential Candidates are all but ignoring this issue; which is exactly what they would continue to do if they are elected into office.

    • Michael Anthony says:

      Turn a blind eye what’s happening to the community? No, its you and the protestors who are turning a blind eye. Chicago’s had hundreds of murders this year, with the vast majority of them black on black. Yesterday, it was a 9 year old boy. When you and others ignore hundreds of murders and only focus on a few by cops, its you who are saying “Black Lives Don’t Matter, Unless You’re Killed By a Cop. Then we’ll protest” Hypocrisy!!

    • Bill says:

      Brutality? By boycotting the film of a man who paints them all as murderers?

      The definition of “brutality” has certainly come down of late; I suspect bad reviews must be “brutality” now too.

  46. Ray Kinsella says:

    why doesn’t anyone mention the police officers who are shot and killed trying to protect the public. there are bad apples everywhere, but the hateful rantings against men and women who risk their lives every day for strangers, deserve better from all. Many of these painful incidents have been used for political purposes. But I assure you the Police officers who were killed while performing their responsibilities were not motivated by politics.
    Something is wrong in this tow where right and wrong cant be distinguished.

    • He wasn’t “ranting” about the police in general. He was talking about people being murdered, and he was talking about the murderers. People being murdered obviously includes the officers who were killed, while murderers includes the people who killed them. Logic is fun, isn’t it?

  47. Michelle says:

    It’s a shame the studio is “furious” about someone exercising their right to protest, and not furious with the police who consistently gun down unarmed men and women and get off scot-free.

    • Bill says:

      Please direct me to the last time an officer actually killed an innocent man and wasn’t charged; certainly zero of the incidents in the media have been without cause; if you attack an officer or worse yet, grab for their weapon, you’ve just committed suicide.

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