Palm Springs (California) – Hollywood’s infamous film director Quentin Tarantino told Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper that anti-racism is the common factor shared by his movies.
Among Tarantino’s masterpieces were “Reservoir Dogs”, “Kill Bill” (the first and the second, although Tarantino accounts them as one), “Jackie Brown” and “Pulp Fiction” which was his first grand hit in 1994. Tarantino’s work is notorious for containing ample violence, which he finds rooted inside human nature, “why avoid it?” he says.
The 53 year-old says that throughout his career, most of his work dealt with racism in one way or another, perhaps in just a glimpse, or a portrayed emotion at a moment during the movie.
“Frankly, I don’t try to make films on racism,” Tarantino says. But the subject is not far-off shore for him, he adds.
He said that racism has had the upper-hand in affairs between white people and black people throughout history, and until this day.
Tarantino expressed how scary it is to discover that racism is spread world-wide. Wherever there is a present minority, the group is ultimately subject to racial discrimination.
When a reporter asked Tarantino on whether he saw himself as a black man with white skin, he replied with stating that he is of Italian origins, and then perhaps there could be a drop of Moorish blood flowing through his veins.
When asked about violence occupying a fair share of his films, especially that Sam Peckinpah was once criticized for the clear violence present in his works, he then directed a violence-free movie “The Ballad of Cable Hogue” and when the film failed he said “they criticize me, yet when I make a violence-free movie, no one watches,” so, is violence a cinematic characteristic?
Tarantino responded saying that Sam Peckinpah was right when he shot the violent scenes, regardless of their brutality, because he wanted to portray reality. He then explained that he shares Peckinpah’s perspective on violence.
When asked about the movie that he ever found influential, Tarantino said that he was about 12 or 13 years-old when he watched “Rocky”.
“Rocky” was very important to me. It was not the reason behind me becoming a filmmaker, but it pulled me towards cinema in general, he said.
Stallone’s story made me think about the character- and what got to me was that I read about Stallone writing the story and insisting to play the role, and wanting to direct too, Tarantino said.
Practically movies that pushed me towards considering cinema for a job were those by Sergio Leone and Mario Bava. After watching “Once Upon a Time in America” and “Black Saturday”, I decided to become a director.