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Quentin Tarantino confirms The Movie Critic won’t be about Pauline Kael

Quentin Tarantino

Quentin Tarantino
Photo: Stefania M. D’Alessandro/Getty Images for RFF

Quentin Tarantino has now, basically, said more things about what his next movie won’t be, than what it is. Specifically, Tarantino (who’s currently touring Europe, in support of his new non-fiction book Cinema Speculation), has confirmed that his next film will apparently be the ’70s-set The Movie Critic—but has once again denied that the critic in question will be, or be based on, very influential 70s movie critic Pauline Kael.

One might be forgiven for assuming that Tarantino would focus his cinematic eye on Kael, the hugely influential New Yorker film reviewer who dominated the field of movie criticism throughout the ’70s and ’80s. Tarantino has, of course, never been shy about incorporating historical material into his movies for his own purposes—most aggressively with 2009’s Inglourious Basterds and his most recent film, Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood—and he’s never been shy about citing Kael as an influence, either, once calling her his “film professor,” and stating in 2020 that she ended up being more influential to me as a filmmaker than any director.”

But he’s now denied the rumor, on more than one occasion (even if only while abroad, for some reason). Which leaves us knowing precious little about the movie itself, other than the fact that it’s set in 1977, and it will, presumably, be very focused on the film scene of that era. That includes not having an answer to what might be the biggest question of them all: Whether this 10th film from Tarantino will be his last, as he’s been promising it would be for years, or whether he’ll continue to soldier on, occasionally pitching his weird Star Trek movies that take place entirely on gangster planets, because yeah, we still haven’t entirely gotten over that one.

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