The New York Police Department officer union has called for a citywide boycott of Quentin Tarantino's films following comments the director made during a rally against police brutality on Saturday. Speaking at the RiseUpOctober protest in New York's Washington Square Park, the filmmaker told the crowd concerning police brutality, "This is not being dealt with in any way at all. That's why we are out here. If it was being dealt with, then these murdering cops would be in jail or at least be facing charges."
The filmmaker added, "When I see murders, I do not stand by ... I have to call a murder a murder, and I have to call the murderers the murderers." Tarantino's remarks came at a tender moment in New York City as, on October 20th, police officer Randolph Holder was shot and killed in East Harlem while in pursuit of a suspect who was ultimately apprehended. "It's like this: It's unfortunate timing, but we've flown in all these families to go and tell their stories ... That cop that was killed, that's a tragedy, too," Tarantino said, Vulture reports.
Upon hearing the director's comments, the NYPD's Benevolent Association president Patrick Lynch responded by calling Tarantino a "purveyor of degeneracy" and called for a boycott of his films; The Hateful Eight will open Christmas day in New York City. "The police officers that Quentin Tarantino calls 'murderers' aren't living in one of his depraved big-screen fantasies – they're risking and sometimes sacrificing their lives to protect communities from real crime and mayhem," Lynch said.
Tarantino's films often reflect a negative attitude toward law enforcement. In Reservoir Dogs, Michael Madsen's Mr. Blonde relishes removing a captured police officer's ear with a switchblade while dancing to "Stuck in the Middle With You," while the lone police officer character in Pulp Fiction enjoys a double-life where he secretly rapes victims in a subterranean pawnshop basement.
"It's no surprise that someone who makes a living glorifying crime and violence is a cop-hater, too," Lynch said, adding that "New Yorkers need to send a message" to Tarantino by boycotting his films.
Eleven people were arrested at the RiseUpOctober rally for charges ranging from disorderly conduct, obstructing vehicular traffic and resisting arrest, the New York Post reports. Cornel West also spoke to the assembled crowd of 300, telling them, "We're here because we have a deep love for those who have been abused by the police. Don't get it twisted — this is a love train!"