The cultural debate of Marvel movies vs. cinema continues ad nauseam. While the studio can lay claim to a revolutionary franchise mega plan that comes off to people as an ultra-corporate monopolization, other Hollywood studios attempt to chase the trends as they try to capitalize on brand-name intellectual properties and shared universe crossovers since the studio started bringing in billions of dollars from films and sequels utilizing the characters in their label.
As the auteur filmmakers come out either pro or con, notably commented on by Martin Scorsese as “roller coasters” instead of films, Quentin Tarantino was asked recently if he would ever be interested in helming a superhero film from the studio. According to the Los Angeles Times, Tarantino was uninterested, saying, “You have to be a hired hand to do those things. I’m not a hired hand. I’m not looking for a job.”
Tarantino notoriously likes to discuss obscure films, but he also shares attention to big studio blockbusters, recalling his experience with Star Wars, “Of course, I liked ‘Star Wars.’ What’s not to like? But I remember — and this is not a ‘but’ in a negative way, but in a good way. The movie completely carried me along, and I was just rocking and rolling with these characters… When the lights came on, I felt like a million dollars. And I looked around and had this moment of recognition, thinking, ‘Wow! What a time at the movies!’ Now, that’s not necessarily my favorite exact type of film. At the end of the day, I’m more of a ‘Close Encounters [of the Third Kind]’ guy.”
While a handful of filmmakers attribute Marvel to the death of cinema, Tarantino had marathoned the studio’s library in preparation for Avengers: Endgame while he was filming Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. He told Empire magazine in 2019, “I think the only comic-book movies I saw last year at theaters were Wonder Woman and Black Panther. But about a couple of weeks ago, I started catching up with some of the Marvel movies so I could go see Endgame.” He even stated his love for Thor: Ragnarok, “It was my favorite one of the series since The Avengers – drastically my favorite.”