In what will mark his third collaboration with director Quentin Tarantino, Brad Pitt is set to star in The Movie Critic. We say star, but not much is known about neither Pitt’s role in the 2025 film nor the plot of Tarantino’s film itself… But looking at Pitt’s fairly central roles in both Inglorious Basterds and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, we’d say it’s probable. Given The Movie Critic is Tarantino’s last film – the director has long said that he would pack it in after his 10th effort – popping Pitt in the central role would certainly be a nice way to round things off.
The little we do know about The Movie Critic comes from a Deadline interview with Tarantino last year. According to the man himself, it’s set in 1977 California and is “based on a guy who really lived, but was never really famous, and he used to write movie reviews for a porno rag”. Inspired by his teenage years, when the director had stumbled across “a really interesting movie page” in a porn magazine, The Movie Critic will tell the story of what Tarantino dubbed a “second-string critic”: “I think he was a very good critic. He was as cynical as hell. His reviews were a cross between early Howard Stern and what Travis Bickle might be if he were a film critic.” Travis Bickle is, of course, Robert Deniro’s character in Taxi Driver, so it well may be that The Movie Critic has a characteristically dark Tarantino slant.
There is an elephant in the room: The Movie Critic will mark Pitt’s first “prestige” film role since the allegations of abuse against the actor emerged back in October of 2022. According to Pitt’s ex-wife Angelina Jolie, Pitt was physically abusive to both her and their children during a flight in 2016. Though it’s since been said that the former couple are trying to resolve the long-running dispute over a winery they shared, for some Pitt’s role in The Movie Critic just won’t sit right. And while it’s not like Pitt’s roles in blockbusters like Bullet Train have relegated him to obscurity, it’s fairly likely that a starring performance in a Tarantino flick will lead to the actor being heaped with acclaim. Pitt’s role as stuntman Cliff Booth landed him an Oscar at the 92nd Academy Awards, and if the same happens with The Movie Critic, we’ll just re-enter those age old conversations about Hollywood’s penchant for ignoring the abusers hidden in plain sight… Which it seems it really does.