The Hateful Eight: Kurt Russell insists his character's violent treatment of Jennifer Jason Leigh's isn't misogynistic

Quentin Tarantino describes Russell's bounty hunter John Ruth as a 'brutal bastard'

Click to follow
The Independent Culture

Kurt Russell has defended The Hateful Eight against misogyny claims, arguing that his character John Ruth’s violent treatment of Jennifer Jason Leigh’s Daisy Domergue is crucial to the story.

The US actor plays a bounty hunter in Quentin Tarantino’s latest Western who is tasked with bringing fugitive Daisy to hang for her murderous crimes. Forced to take shelter from a blizzard in Minnie’s Haberdashery, they are met by a group of strangers Ruth is convinced are there to kill him and save Daisy.

Described by Tarantino as a “brutal bastard”, Ruth hits Daisy with the butt of his gun, throws hot stew at her and repeatedly punches her in the face, giving her black eyes and turning the audience against him exactly as the director intended.

Russell who, perhaps unlike some cinema-goers, fully understands Tarantino’s vision, finds the suggestion of misogyny ridiculous.

“When people say that, they reveal themselves. You step outside that box, I’m going to beat the s**t out of you. I don’t care if you’re a five-year-old kid, I’ve got a license here that says I can kill you,” he told

“Forget misogyny, I can murder you. You have no rights, nothing. If you don’t treat that woman [the same], who in this case is every bit deserving of it, what are you, a sexist? You don’t think women are equal to men?”

Producer Harvey Weinstein has accused those crying misogyny of “fishing for stupidity” while Leigh told Variety that Tarantino writes “the best parts for women out there…brave, bold, insane, fabulous women” and that she “didn’t think [The Hateful Eight] was misogynistic for a second”.

Tarantino, naturally, has the final word: “Violence is hanging over every one of those characters like a cloak of night. So I’m not going to go, ‘Okay, that’s the case for seven of the characters but because one is a woman, I have to treat her differently’. I’m not going to do that.”