Violence in pop culture and its relation to real-life violence and 'Django Unchained': these are white hot controversies streaming through the public discourse right now. And they've just rammed into each other in captivating fashion in an interview between 'Django' writer-director Quentin Tarantino and British journalist Krishnan Guru-Murthy. This is must-see TV, folks.
In the video below, Tarantino and Guru-Murthy engage in a civil if stuffy conversation about 'Django,' slavery and the varied reactions the movie has been generating. The civility ends at about the 4:00 mark, however, once the interviewer pushes Tarantino to talk about his opinions on the correlation between movie violence and real violence. Tarantino, taking exception to Guru-Murthy's continued prodding on the subject, refuses to answer a question, saying, "I'm not your slave and you're not my master. I'm not a monkey."
The reporter isn't content to back away (although to his credit he never rises to Tarantino's level of intensity), and accuses Tarantino of not wanting to talk about anything serious, especially after the director disregards the interview as "a commercial for the movie." It escalates from there. Quentin's main issue with the line of questioning, it appears, is that he's addressed the topic of movie violence vs. real violence several times, and he's done talking about it. This is quite clear.
It's a fascinating interview from start to finish, all the more engrossing because neither person is necessarily in the right. (It would be easy to side with Tarantino here for us film buffs, but his overreaction eventually borders on the immature.) And, of course, it's just another entry into a debate that figures to rage on in the U.S. for a long time.