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Quentin Tarantino is one of the most beloved and unique filmmakers working today. He is notoriously opinionated and is staunch in his beliefs about filmmaking, themedium, the business and the way films are meant to be seen. So it may not be a big surprise that the director is not a Netflix subscriber. Quentin Tarantino is not the first auteur to take umbrage with Netflix for some reason or another as many feel that the streaming giant undermines the theatrical experience and jeopardizes theater owners. But, Quentin Tarantino actually makes an interesting point about how Netflix impacts the viewing habits of the consumer. He said:
I'm not on Netflix, so I can't even tell you exactly how that works... But even if you just have all the say the movie channels in your package -- and that's something I do have -- so you hit the guide and you go down the list, and you hit there and you watch something or you tape something, and maybe you never get around to watching it or you actually do watch it, and then maybe you watch it for 10 minutes or 20 minutes, and maybe you start doing something else, 'Nah, I'm not really into this.' And then that's kind of where we've fallen into. However there was a different quality to the video store.
These comments recently resurfaced on YouTube, so it's possible that Quentin Tarantino has finally given Netflix and the modern binge-watching culture a shot, but I doubt it. Much of the discussion around streaming often involves how the new model will impact the industry as far as distribution and exhibition are concerned, but Quentin Tarantino is concerned with how it decreases investment from the consumer. We have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to choice. A nearly infinite amount of content is available through all the various mediums today. This means that you are less likely to give something a shot if it doesn't immediately grab you. When you used to rent a movie from the store or go to the cinema, you were committed to that choice. Per what Tarantino also mentions in the interview, you paid for a movie and either drove home or sat in the theater to consume it. You felt compelled to give the film your full attention because you had already made an investment in it. It is the fact that Netflix is replacing video stores and the experience that Quentin Tarantino laments.
It's very sad to me. It's very sad to me. I'm a little surprised at how quickly it happened and how the public has kind-of moved on. No one's looking back and they don't really care.
The video store was an entirely different experience than choosing films today. We relied on recommendations from clerks and friends, box art and descriptions and not on Rotten Tomatoes scores or online reviews. There was a commitment to the experience of the video store that was more honest and pure, at least according to the famous director. So while Quentin Tarantino's (likely) penultimate film--which is apparently not about Charles Manson--has found a home, it is safe to say that Netflix will not be the distributor the next time around. For all the latest in filmmakers nobly fighting losing battles and for all the updates on Quentin Tarantino's next film venture, keep it here on CinemaBlend.