Illustration by La Tuttle, University of Minnesota

End of The Reel – Quentin Tarantino’s Swan Song 

What will Quentin Tarantino’s final film be about?

Quentin Tarantino has scrapped his widely publicized project “The Movie Critic” for his final film but is still committed to hitting ten movies before retirement. What could he do next for his final masterpiece?

Cinema has changed. Despite the success of Oppenheimer and Barbie this past year, theaters aren’t filling like they were in the past. The entertainment world is no stranger to blockbuster franchises, with the 80s being ripe with prequel after sequel after threequel.

That age has come again, and it is in this current age that cinema’s Grindhouse golden son has taken a bow: Quentin Tarantino. For years, Tarantino has blazed the trail for filmmakers with his snappy dialogue and stylization of violence. “Pulp Fiction” and the “Kill Bill” duology have gone down as some of the most visually impressive films in the industry. Still, according to the man himself, he plans on retiring before he risks becoming “out of touch” with filmgoers nowadays.

Tarantino planned to round off his career with a tenth and final film, no more and no less. He envisioned a compendium, a metanarrative take on his work behind the director’s chair. Rumors were abound about who would take on the starring role, including frequent collaborator Brad Pitt and even a long-anticipated team-up with Tom Cruise.

Unfortunately, perhaps because of an artist’s natural desire to make their sendoff the biggest yet, “The Movie Critic” is off the table and scrapped

Thankfully for film junkies, Tarantino’s not throwing in the towel just yet. He is committed to making one last film, though fan disappointment’s on the rise since they won’t get to see the initially-conceived crème de la crème of throwback flicks. One must wonder if scrapping “The Movie Critic” is a blessing in disguise. If the grand finale of Quentin Tarantino’s storied career gets boiled down to a slew of cameos and nostalgia bait, then that would betray the storytelling focus of Tarantino’s works. He’s not about cameos and cheap audience thrills; he’s about the art. 

Tarantino’s style of filmmaking comes from his appreciation of Grindhouse filmmaking. It’s no surprise that the filmography of the creator of “Pulp Fiction” has a very pulpy feel to it. There’s a rawness to his films and an unabashed honesty to his style that is distinctly him. When audiences go into a theater to watch Tarantino on the big screen, they know that it’s Tarantino’s vision on the screen and not one watered down by studio mandates.

So if the man’s not tackling a metanarrative or cashing in on the current cameo craze that has swept over filmmaking, then what could be the final project that Tarantino stans are chomping at the bit over?

There are a slew of canceled projects in Tarantino’s history that he could finish as his sendoff. It’s not unprecedented, as “The Hateful Eight’s” rousing fan effort to finish the project saved it from development hell. 

In recent years, Tarantino has given more voice to potential sequels, one of which is a final chapter to his previous two “Kill Bill” movies. Movie duologies are rare, after all, and as the adage goes, good things often come in threes.

Whatever path Tarantino takes, it is likely to draw in more than its fair share of moviegoers. Tarantino is among the pantheon of the greatest directors in the business, so his final film will no doubt bring audiences in droves for his great send-off. 

Kyle A. McLaughlin, Elizabethtown College

Contributing Writer

Kyle A. McLaughlin

Elizabethtown College

English, Professional Writing

"Hello! My name is Kyle, I'm a senior English: Professional Writing major at Elizabethtown College. I currently have one story published by my campus newsletter and I like to play D&D on the side."

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