Kareem Abdul Jabbar, the legendary, retired basketball player, who had a close relationship with Bruce Lee, the dead, champion martial arts actor, is protective of Lee’s legacy. He’s unhappy with how Quentin Tarantino portrayed his friend in the new film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. In the middle of the film, Brad Pitt’s character fights Bruce Lee. Jabbar described Tarantino’s depiction of Lee as being “sloppy” and “somewhat racist.” Jabbar was unhappy with what he perceived as a bigoted machismo in the way that Pitt’s character defeated Lee in the fight scene. Bruce Lee’s family has also spoken out about Bruce’s portrayal in the film. Lee’s daughter Shannon was particularly frustrated with the portrayal of her father. She thought that he was unfairly portrayed as cruel and arrogant. All Quentin Tarantino movies are controversial…it’s the nature of the beast; someone’s going to be unhappy. Sorry Kareem. Sorry Shannon.
Quentin Tarantino is known for crafting high-energy, violent, profane films that verge on the bizarre. One of his common tricks is to cast actors who have not been seen in a long time as he did with Pam Grier and Robert Forster in Jackie Brown. He does the same thing with music…he finds the songs we haven’t heard in a long time or obscure artists that are slotted in at just the right place in the movie. It’s part of the Tarantino movie making style. Now, timed to coincide with the release of Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, he has complied 70 of his favorite songs from all his movies on Spotify. Here’s a sample of the breathe of his choices:
- George Baker’s “Little Green Bag” from the title sequence of Reservoir Dogs
- Kool & The Gang’s “Jungle Boogie” and Chuck Berry’s “You Never Can Tell” from Pulp Fiction.
- David Bowie’s “Cat People (Putting Out the Fire)” from Inglourious Basterds
- The White Stripes’ “Apple Blossom” from The Hateful Eight.