It's not every day that one gets a chance to disagree with Quentin Tarantino. And yet, now that the Oscar-nominated director has thrown his Death Proof under the bus as part of the Hollywood Reporter's Director's Roundtable chat, I can go on record and say he's completely wrong. (Of course, that's my opinion.)
Tarantino's participating in the annual “roundtable” chats hosted by The Hollywood Reporter with the top directors of this year’s race. They came up with Tarantino (Django Unchained), Tom Hooper (Les Miserables), Ang Lee (Life of Pi), David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook), Ben Affleck (Argo), and Gus Van Sant (Promised Land). The clip goes slightly longer than an hour, but it’s well worth your time to play it in the background while you work, or save it until you have the time to listen to these wizards open up about the toughest days on set, the joys (and pains) of the editing room, and so much more. And QT telling us that Death Proof is his worst film. Here’s the clip:
Which movie do you think is Tarantino's worst? Cast your vote in our poll here.
Tarantino, on Death Proof, says that he'll retire before he makes another movie as bad as that one, because he'd like to retire before tarnishing his legacy. "To me, it's all about my filmography, and I want to go out with a terrific filmography," he says. "Death Proof has got to be the worst movie I ever make. And for a left-handed movie, that wasn't so bad, all right? So if that's the worst I ever get, I'm good. But I do think one of those out-of-touch, old, limp, flaccid-dick movies costs you three good movies as far as your rating is concerned."
So he's not saying it's terrible - just not up to his standards. Which is fine. I can live with that (even though I think it's pretty terrific).
As for the rest of the clip, Tarantino often takes over the conversation and (thankfully) brings energy and unbridled enthusiasm into this room. Affleck and Russell hold their own. Hooper’s undoubtedly intelligent, but isn’t a good verbal storyteller. And Lee and Van Sant have to be called on by the “teacher” to elaborate on the questions. Either way, if you dig film, and have more than a passing interest in the movies that likely will be contending for Oscars in major categories early next year, give it a listen.