Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Zach Braff “Shocked” By "Unfair And Unfounded" Kickstarter Campaign Backlash Zach Braff “Shocked” By "Unfair And Unfounded" Kickstarter Campaign Backlash Watch: Joaquin Phoenix Gets His Stoner Detective Groove On In Trailer For Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’ Watch: Joaquin Phoenix Gets His Stoner Detective Groove On In Trailer For Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’ David Fincher Will Direct The Entire First Season Of HBO's 'Utopia' In 2015 David Fincher Will Direct The Entire First Season Of HBO's 'Utopia' In 2015 Best To Worst: David Fincher's Complete Music Videography Ranked Best To Worst: David Fincher's Complete Music Videography Ranked Brad Pitt Says 'Fury' Co-Star Shia LaBeouf Is "One Of The Best Actors I've Ever Seen" Brad Pitt Says 'Fury' Co-Star Shia LaBeouf Is "One Of The Best Actors I've Ever Seen" First Look: Kristen Stewart & Nicholas Hoult In Drake Doremus’ Sci-Fi Film ‘Equals’ First Look: Kristen Stewart & Nicholas Hoult In Drake Doremus’ Sci-Fi Film ‘Equals’ John Cusack Says Hollywood Is A "Whorehouse" That "Eats Young Actors Up And Spits Them Out" John Cusack Says Hollywood Is A "Whorehouse" That "Eats Young Actors Up And Spits Them Out" Review: 'Southcliffe' May Be The Best New Series On Netflix You Haven't Yet Watched Review: 'Southcliffe' May Be The Best New Series On Netflix You Haven't Yet Watched New Image From 'Inherent Vice,' Paul Thomas Anderson Completely Changed The Ending From Thomas Pynchon's Book New Image From 'Inherent Vice,' Paul Thomas Anderson Completely Changed The Ending From Thomas Pynchon's Book Why 'You're The Worst' Turned Out To Be The Best TV Show Of The Summer Why 'You're The Worst' Turned Out To Be The Best TV Show Of The Summer Watch: First Trailer For Michael Mann’s Hacker Heist Thriller ‘Blackhat’ Starring Chris Hemsworth Watch: First Trailer For Michael Mann’s Hacker Heist Thriller ‘Blackhat’ Starring Chris Hemsworth Watch: Ellen Page And Kate Mara Are 'Tiny Detectives' In Hilarious 'True Detective' Parody Watch: Ellen Page And Kate Mara Are 'Tiny Detectives' In Hilarious 'True Detective' Parody New Look: Reese Witherspoon And Joaquin Phoenix In Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' New Look: Reese Witherspoon And Joaquin Phoenix In Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' Review: David Fincher's 'Gone Girl' Starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Neil Patrick Harris, Kim Dickens & More Review: David Fincher's 'Gone Girl' Starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Neil Patrick Harris, Kim Dickens & More 10 Female Directors Who Deserve More Attention From Hollywood 10 Female Directors Who Deserve More Attention From Hollywood Miles Teller Says Role In 'Divergent' Made Him Feel "Dead Inside," And He Took Movie "For Business Reasons" Miles Teller Says Role In 'Divergent' Made Him Feel "Dead Inside," And He Took Movie "For Business Reasons" The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes

Quentin Tarantino Says Newtown Tragedy About "Gun Control And Mental Health" Issues, Not Movie Violence

The Playlist By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 4, 2013 at 1:39PM

With the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut still lingering on the mind on the nation, there has been an awful lot of talk (but not much action) from politicians and pundits on both sides of the issue. But perhaps grabbing the biggest headline, for better or worse, was the lunkheaded NRA VP Wayne LaPierre, who dredged up the old argument that movie violence (citing films like "American Psycho" -- which has no guns -- and "Natural Born Killers") as the cause of these kinds of incidents, not the wide availability of assault weapons and magazines that carry more payload that anyone realistically needs outside of the military.
20
Quentin Tarantino

With the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut still lingering on the mind on the nation, there has been an awful lot of talk (but not much action) from politicians and pundits on both sides of the issue. But perhaps grabbing the biggest headline, for better or worse, was the lunkheaded NRA VP Wayne LaPierre, who dredged up the old argument that movie violence (citing films like "American Psycho" -- which has no guns -- and "Natural Born Killers") as the cause of these kinds of incidents, not the wide availability of assault weapons and magazines that carry more payload that anyone realistically needs outside of the military. With his own blood spurting "Django Unchained" in theaters, NPR's Terry Gross broached the subject with director Quentin Tarantino, who bristled slightly at (again) being asked about the effect of violence on society.

"I'm really annoyed. I think it's disrespectful. I think it's disrespectful to their memory, actually," Tarantino said about being asked movie violence. "[It's disrepectful to] the memory of the people who died to talk about movies. I think it's totally disrespectful to their memory. Obviously, the issue is gun control and mental health." Hear, hear.

Gross started the conversation by basically asking if Tarantino is sensitive to what happened in Newtown, and his own viewing habits following such an incident. "Do you mean like on that day would I watch 'The Wild Bunch'? Maybe not on that day," he replied, adding: "Would I watch a kung fu movie three days after the Sandy Hook massacre? Would I watch a kung fu movie? Maybe, 'cause they have nothing to do with each other."

But if there's one thing on the big screen that Tarantino will not abide by, it's animal death. "The only thing that I've ever watched in a movie that I wished I've never seen is the real-life animal death, a real-life insect death in a movie. That's absolutely positively where I draw the line and a lot of European and Asian movies do that, and we even did that in America for a little bit of time," he said. "I don't like seeing horses being yanked on cables from running Ws. I don't like seeing animals murdered on screen."

"...movies are about make believe. It's about imagination. Part of the thing is we're trying to create a realistic experience, but we are faking it. And the faking it is the art. The faking it is the art of it, it's the make believe of it all. I don't think that there's any place in a movie for a real death," he continued. "And you can say, oh, [Sam] Peckinah shot the heads off the chickens in 'Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid' but it's OK because they ate the chickens afterwards. And actually, maybe those chickens got three more days of life because they were taken out of a slaughterhouse and everything. Well, you can justify it that way because people eat chicken and I eat chicken, so all good. I don't want to see real death, though, that's the problem. It's the watching of the real chicken get his real head blown off. I didn't, I don't pay money or I don't want to sit down and watch real death when I watch a movie. I don't even want to see an animal terrified. I've seen movies where they've terrified an animal to get a response from him and I don't want to see that."

Undoubtedly, this won't be the last we hear on the subject. Share you thoughts with us below.

This article is related to: Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates