Good, it’s been made absolutely clear: Quentin Tarantino is officially the latest subscriber to Hollywood’s ultra-leftists, making such a clamorous arrival that Michael Moore and Sean Penn, Barbra Streisand and George Clooney would be jealous — to name but a few of the most media-present members of the clan. There’s being left-wing and then there’s being [really] left-wing, and Quentin has made a splash. His street performance was not something ordinarily liberal. And having failed to convince him to apologize, his movie studio (The Weinstein Company, run by his friend Harvey Weinstein, Democrats’ super sponsor), has simply had to wash its hands of him in an effort to limit economic damage and prevent its image being tarnished. In a statement, The Weinstein Company said, “The Weinstein Co. has a longstanding relationship and friendship with Quentin and has a tremendous amount of respect for him as a filmmaker. We don’t speak for Quentin; he can and should be allowed to speak for himself.”
And Tarantino spoke. At the “stop police terror” movement’s gathering in New York last Saturday, he yelled: “When I see murders, I do not stand by … I have to call the murderers the murderers.” And yesterday in the first interview after the anti-police assembly, he persisted. Speaking to the Los Angeles Times, he put on a pitiful act and played the victim: “I’m not being intimidated. Frankly, it feels lousy to have a bunch of police mouthpieces call me a cop hater. That is a misrepresentation. That is slanderous. That is not how I feel,” he said. “But you know, that’s their choice to do that to me. What can I do? I’m not taking back what I said. What I said was the truth. I’m used to people misrepresenting me; I’m used to being misunderstood. What I’d like to think is their attack against me is so vicious that they’re revealing themselves.”
The problem for the director of “Pulp Fiction” is that the video clip of his heavy attack on the forces of order has been seen and heard by all of America. And by all its police officers. And all the relatives of its police officers. And by all the people who appreciate the fundamental work the boys in blue do to defend society from good-for-nothings. They don’t have Quentin’s name and bank balance, they risk their real lives with real blood — unlike the fictitious tomato pulp massacres in Tarantino’s horror films. With good reason, they are furious. They have said so and now they are considering the response. NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton reacted immediately: “There are no words to describe the contempt I have for him and his comments at this particular time.”
Then the New York police union put out the idea of a boycott. It spread like wildfire, and now unions from Los Angeles to New Jersey, from Chicago to Philadelphia, have signed up. “What we do in December is going to depend in large part on what Tarantino does between now and [the premiere of his next film] … We will take every opportunity to hurt him in the only area that seems to matter to him, and that’s in the economic area.”
Tarantino had flown from Hollywood specially for the rally (which ended with several arrests for being an unauthorized demonstration), and his public interference was seen as an unacceptable affront to a city still mourning the death of a (black) NYPD officer killed on duty by a black gang member, a dealer who was supposed to be undertaking a rehabilitation program after a career of 28 arrests.
The head of the officers’ union immediately announced the boycott of Tarantino’s latest film, “The Hateful Eight,” due out on Christmas Day. It is the first time that such action has been taken, and the public’s reaction remains to be seen. There is widespread sympathy for the police after Ferguson, and violence from the Black Panthers and the “Black Lives Matter” movement. This is supported by the growing presence of blue cockades that have become a popular symbol of solidarity with the officers. The effect this sympathy will have on the movie’s box office earnings remains to be seen, although it will be difficult to establish the effectiveness of the boycott. It could be that the film is its own undoing and that only those most passionate about the blood and violence genre go to see it. As for myself, there will be no difference either way: I have never been a fan of this movie genre and so unfortunately I cannot actively boycott it — I’d never have gone to see it anyway.
One thing is sure. Tarantino has overstepped the mark: With his words he has not only adopted an ideology of reverse racism, but has hit out at an entire category of people of all races — dedicated to carrying out their work of sacrifice — with a most serious accusation.
No one has ever thought about promoting a boycott or organized censorship against any of the other left-wing Hollywood stars: “Foot voting” (not going to see the films they do not like) has always been enough, whatever the reasoning.
The contents of Michael Moore’s “documentaries” (note the quotation marks), adapted to his liberal agenda through a rather negligible respect for the facts, are what made him famous (see his anti-Bush movie). Featured in the gallery of “useful idiots” belonging to communist Cuban Chavez and socialist Venezuelan Castro (strangling democracy, the pair of them reduced their countries — wealthy and floating on oil — to misery) is Sean Penn. Barbra [Streisand] is the Hollywood queen of fundraising. George [Clooney] is half in, like Robert Redford: The two of them support the Democrats’ political campaigns with billions of dollars from their commercial movie successes, yet every now and then they hear the call of the wild (in red) and produce “historic” films in an attempt to revive the heroes of the left who risk slipping into oblivion. Think “Good Night, and Good Luck,” which Clooney dedicated to the TV journalist Edward Murrow in 2005, the bitter enemy of anti-communist Sen. Joseph McCarthy. Or Redford’s (and Mary Mapes’) recent “Truth,” which attempts the impossible rehabilitation of Dan Rather, the “monument” of CBS who wanted eternal fame for having made George Bush lose his second election, and instead lost himself his post as anchorman by presenting false documents on the GOP candidate’s military service.
So all these stars, and many others, have always played the role of “normal” [agents of] agitprop, classic billionaires of the showbiz world who in absolute legitimacy side politically with whoever they like. They are protected by the right to freedom of speech and thought that reigns in the capitalism they so (vocally) despise. Many agree with them, many others think differently: It is all part of American democracy. Who cares if they love Castro? Or if they fight to raise the minimum wage at McDonald’s, where they never go? Who cares if when there’s a Republican president they are against U.S. imperialism, and if Obama is in power they say nothing about the Islamic State or the White House’s failures in Syria and Libya, or the soldiers redeployed to Iraq and Afghanistan? Who cares if they think and say whatever they want? Quentin, on the other hand, has launched the most serious and offensive accusation: murderer. And the biggest, human-level disappointment is that, wrapped in his cloud of ideological hatred for the system that made him a rich billionaire, and for those defending it, he doesn’t even realize [what he’s done].