After Lost paradises and childhood in 50 movies, in which Jordi Picatoste Verdejo (Barcelona, 1980) directed the gaze to that macro genre that revolves around the cinema of childhood, the journalist and writer now puts the spotlight on one of the 'enfants terrible' of contemporary cinema. In The Tarantino effect: His cinema and pop culture (Redbook ediciones) sheds the keys to understand the peculiar universe of a unique filmmaker who boasts of not having attended any film school; his training is self-taught, based on spending hours and hours watching all kinds of films thanks to his work at the legendary video archives Video Archives of Manhattan Beach, in California.
Picatoste was not interested in writing another biography about the director of Pulp Fiction but go into a journey through that conglomeration of influences with which you have fed your filmography, analyze its undoubted importance in today's popular culture and record the nothing-disdainful footprint that has aroused in other filmmakers since it surprised the industry with its dazzling and violent debut Reservoir dogs (1992).
The book, made in almost six months, is divided into several chapters in which the text coexists with full-color photographs that illustrate a widely documented and readable and enjoyable, ideal for both the first time approaching the cinema of Knoxville as for the most hardcore fan. In The Tarantino movies we find the technical sheet, the synopsis and a detailed description with anecdotes, curiosities and varied information about his ten works as director to date: Reservoir dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown, Kill Bill, Volume 1, Kill Bill Volume 2, Death Proof, Damn bastards, Django unchained, The odious eight Y Once upon a time in Hollywood, which opens in Spain next August.
"The first movie I saw of Tarantino in the movies was Pulp fiction. I was a teenager and I liked it, but the first one that really fascinates me is Jackie Brown, which is precisely the least tarantinesca, the one that has the least show of violence. She is more mature, more rested and with other interests, nothing to do with what her two previous films offered, "confesses Picatoste in conversation with The vanguard. The writer claims to have enjoyed revisiting the filmography of this man of style and overwhelming personality, especially with Django unchained, which will be presented on April 17 at the Filmoteca de Catalunya.
Picatoste has enjoyed revisiting Tarantino's filmography, especially Django unchained, which will be presented on April 17 at the Filmoteca
In The classics of Tarantino, Picatoste dives for the works that have clearly marked the filmography of this American director and screenwriter who has absorbed all kinds of influences to create a perfectly recognizable universe. From the Django (1966) by Sergio Corbucci with Franco Nero as protagonist of one of the best examples of spaghetti western a That damned armored train (Enzo G. Castellari, 1978) so patent in Damn bastards, going by Coffy (Jack Hill, 1973), one of the most representative titles of blaxploitation with a Pam Grier turned into a vengeful nurse of the heartless who have made her sister a drug addict or Lady Snowblood (Toshiya Fujita, 1973) clear reference to Kill Bill and its sequel.
The Tarantino as a recuperator of forgotten actors has a wide presence in the section Return through the big door, where actors such as David Carradine, who after his mythical Caine of the series parade Kung Fu He returned briefly to the first line - including the Golden Globe nomination - with the evil Bill of Kill Bill: Volume 2. Pam Grier as the protagonist of Jackie Brown, role that Tarantino wrote thinking about her or Jennifer Jason Leigh having a hard time as an outlaw prisoner of Kurt Russell in The odious eight, character for which he achieved his only Oscar nomination, are other cases of interpreters to which the director gave them a new opportunity. The most paradigmatic example, however, is headed by John Travolta. The iconic actor of Saturday night Fever or Grease, saw how his career plummeted until Quentin - great admirer of his - offered him the character of Vincent Vega in Pulp fiction. The rest is history.
Picatoste also mentions with emotion Robert Forster, an actor known mainly for television series of the seventies who returned through the front door as bond agent Max Cherry in Jackie Brown. "Robert was not an actor well known to the public, but thanks to Tarantino his career rebounded," he says. Then he has intervened as a secondary in films like Objetive the white house, Survivor, the TV series Twin Peaks: The return or more recently in the western Damsel, of the Zellner brothers.
And one of the actresses who has a lot to thank Tarantino is Uma Thurman that, although she was already known at the beginning of her career for films like Dangerous friendships or The gangster girl, his two most famous characters have been, without a doubt, the Mia Wallace of Pulp fiction and the Beatrix Kiddo / The Bride of the saga Kill Bill.
Among the actors who have offered cameos significant, the book reviews those of Don Johnson, Edward Bunker, Franco Nero, Rod Taylor or Christopher Walken. The Tarantino family compiles both those performers who have been discovered by the filmmaker, and the New Zealander Zoë Bell, as well as those who have very strong links with their films; is the case of Bruce Dern, Samuel L. Jackson, Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, the aforementioned Thurman or Christoph Waltz, who has achieved his two Oscars as a supporting actor for Damn bastards Y Django unchained.
Picatoste considers that Tarantino "is well considered in general by the critics, although there are voices that criticize him not being an author or doing anything new. He is a filmmaker who has his own brand, including his own voice in the Oxford dictionary, tarantinesco, which indicates that he has more than enough individual importance. Another thing is to make tributes, but all the filmmakers have references. "
And what is it that a filmmaker of his caliber has contributed to the seventh art? "He has taken references that were not well seen, he has recovered them, he has updated them and he has managed to connect with the general public. In addition, he has been able to change the story in subgenres such as spaguetti western or blaxploitation and has dignified films that were badly considered, "he argues.
Tarantino has taken references that were not well seen, has recovered, has updated and has managed to connect with the general public "
The writer has also wanted to pay tribute to the songs of Tarantino, "Those that originally belong to other films and that after playing again in theirs have had a second life". For this section circulate Across 110th Street, by Bobby Womack; Bang Bang (My baby shot me down), by Nancy Sinatra, which can be heard right after Bill's shot at Beatrix at the wedding rehearsal; Django, by Rocky Roberts, which is heard in the initial credit titles of Django unchained; Girl, you'll be a woman soon, from Urge Overkill, one of the themes of Pulp fiction; Hooked on a feeling, by Blue Swede, a song that is part of Reservoir dogs or You never can tell, of Chuck Berry, twist that Vincent and Mia dance in the Jack Rabbit Slim contest.
Likewise, Picatoste's book offers a sample of the titles that draw from the director's influence on Tarantino's footprint. From the thriller Love at point-blank range, first screenplay by Tarantino that saw the light in the hands of another director, until Bad times in the Royale, by Drew Goddard. Of course, without forgetting his imprint in series such as the acclaimed Breaking Bad or in the Spanish Magical Girl, by Carlos Vermut.
The journalist and writer is expectant to see the latest creation of the protagonist of his studio, Once upon a time in Hollywood, which has been translated here Once upon a time in Hollywood, focused on the changing landscape of the movie mecca at the end of the 60s. He says he was surprised by the trailer and its comedy tone, more so if it uses a tragic element such as the death of Sharon Tate at the hands of the family Manson For that reason, it would not be surprising that this first advance ends up cheating us and then the courses go the other way. "I have the riddle of knowing if he will have portrayed the massacre and how he will have done it, although I am sure it will not be a Django bloodbath, but he will have done it with great respect," he says.
The presentation of The Tarantino effect: His cinema and pop culture will take place this Wednesday, April 10 at 7pm at the Fnac Triangle in Barcelona and will feature the participation of both Picatoste and the journalist Mauricio Bach, author of the book's prologue.
The presentation of The Tarantino effect: His cinema and pop culture will take place this Wednesday, April 10 at 7pm at the Fnac Triangle