Quentin Tarantino: A Graphic Biography

Frances Lincoln. (BioGraphics). Mar. 2024. 128p. ISBN 9780711290761. $19.99. BIOG
Author Botton (Andy Warhol: A Graphic Biography) and illustrator Acosta portray writer and director Quentin Tarantino as a boundlessly energetic and deeply committed artist with a sophisticated understanding of cinematic storytelling in this unauthorized biography. Rather than providing a comprehensive accounting of the day-to-day facts of their subject’s life, the creators structure their story around a handful of apparently invented scenes depicting Tarantino in conversation with an assortment of his collaborators, in order to emphasize the filmmaker’s influences, aspirations, and artistic process. A particular highlight is a scene in which Uma Thurman takes advantage of a break in filming Pulp Fiction’s diner dance contest to question Tarantino about his process of drawing on iconography from his favorite films in order to develop his own idiosyncratic characters. Another highlight is a discussion of how Tarantino views each of his films as being in conversation with one another; in the book, this dialogue takes place during a night out on the town with the cast of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.
VERDICT Botton’s deeply insightful script and knack for composing dialogue attuned to Tarantino’s distinctive rhythm and intensity make this an essential volume for fans of the filmmaker, as well as anyone interested in modern American cinema.
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