There seems to be a consensus that Quentin Tarantino can do no wrong when it comes to filmmaking. He’s somehow ‘earned’ the right to be able to use any language he desires, regardless of the word’s impact.
Here’s a quick 18 MINUTE LONG video of every time a character in a Tarantino movie uses the N-word:
If you read the comments for this video, everyone is pretty much on the same page that Tarantino is suuuch a great writer that he’s ‘earned’ the right to use the n-word whenever and however he wants.
His first movie, Reservoir Dogs, was released in 1992 and drops the hard ‘er’ 5 times. It’s his first movie. There is no level of credibility established at this point. Straight from the gate, his characters talk about black people as if they are sub-human.
Sure, you could make the argument that the characters in Reservoir Dogs are meant to be disgusting ignorant criminals so of course they use language like that. I’m not here to make that argument. Reservoir Dogs is not a documentary.
You can completely cut out ‘every nigger I know treats their woman like a piece of shit’ and the movie doesn’t get any worse. That scene doesn’t add ANYTHING positive but just reinforces a weird stereotype that has nothing to do with the plot of the movie.
Now, this is where Tarantino defenders go deep into their bag and pull out ‘well black people use the n-word all the time. I mean, listen to rap music.’ So now we have to debate if there’s a difference between ‘nigga’ and ‘nigger’.
Real quick, when I’m sitting and watching a movie, the difference between hearing ‘nigga’ and ‘nigger’ is like the difference between a doctor telling you that you have a cold and telling you that you have cancer. And the difference between a black person saying the n-word and a white person saying the n-word is the difference between a doctor telling you that you have cancer and a random barista telling you that you have cancer.
White people use the word to provoke and dehumanize black people. Black people use the word with each other as a term of familiarity and endearment. The difference couldn’t be more radically opposite.
So please tell me how I’m supposed to feel when I’m watching Django Unchained and Quentin Tarantino uses the n-word 110 times? Tarantino is one of the whitest men I’ve seen. He is certainly not a friend of mine. And there is no way he has any idea what it feels like when that word is used specifically to belittle black and attach black people.
So why are we letting him use the n-word?
There is a scene in True Romance where Christopher Walken goes to confront Dennis Hopper and attempts to insult him by that Sicilians have darker skin because they have ‘nigger blood’ in them. True Romance is a movie about Christian Slater falling in love with a hooker. Tarantino literally takes a break from the entire plot and narrative for a scene, that if removed from the movie does not change the trajectory of the main storyline, so that he can shit on Sicilians with the worst possible insult he can think of: their ancestors had sex with black men.
Tarantino makes good movies or whatever but there’s no reason I have to flinch and pretend to be unbothered by Leonardo DiCaprio saying the n-word. Tarantino makes movies that I physically and emotionally cannot fully enjoy because I don’t have the luxury of hearing the n-word casually thrown around without feeling personally shit on.
Is Tarantino racist? I don’t know. I don’t care. It doesn’t matter. There is no reason why we give him a pass because his dialogue is ‘realistic’. Fuck that.
(Kill Bill is fine. No one says nigger. That’s pretty cool of him to grant us one movie we can watch without feeling like garbage.)