Top Quentin Tarantino Films
Quentin Tarantino’s films are known for their violent bloodshed, unique dialogue, up-beat soundtracks, and great storytelling told often in nonlinear fashion. The films in “Tarantino’s Universe” all share the common theme of revenge but all go about different ways to reaching the exciting climaxes. Due to Tarantino’s love for cinema he is able to bring in a lot of different influences from past films which can be seen clearly in Kill Bill and Django Unchained. Quentin Tarantino’s films are all highly charismatic with all the characters bringing the film and dialogue to life. I’m sad to be writing this because that means I’ve finally watched all his films that he has directed. In regards to the list Tarantino considers Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2 to be a single film, so in total he’s only made 7 films in 22 years, however quality over quantity rings true here. Well enough talking, here’s my list of Quentin Tarantino’s best films:
7. Death Proof (2007)
Coming in a number seven is Death Proof. It’s agreed upon by most (even the QT himself) that this is the least favorite out of all his films, however with by no means is it not a good film. It has the capabilities of being some director’s best pieces of work. The film takes a look at two separate groups of women that are stalked by stuntman who plans to use his “Death Proof” Hot Rod to execute the women. I love the look this film has which the crew took liberties to purposely scratch the film to achieve it’s look. The acting, dialogue, and revenge are all there, but this is the only Tarantino film that I felt was taking to long to get to the main point. The most memorable scene are the Lap Dance and “Which way you going, left or right”.
6. Jackie Brown (1997)
Jackie Brown is the only film by QT that he has adapted from a novel, by Elmore Leonard’s called Rum Punch. It’s no coincidence that QT was still able to implement his dialogue into this story. While growing up Tarantino read a lot of Leonard’s work which helped his writing and finding his voice. Tarantino gets the most of his cast here, and essentially rediscovering talents in Grier and Forster The film is about Jackie Brown (Pam Grier), a flight attendant, who gets caught attempting to smuggle gun dealer Ordell Robbie’s (Samuel L. Jackson) money aboard a plane. She teams up with her bail bondsman Max Cherry (Robert Forster) to get Ordell and his accomplices Melanie (Bridget Fonda) and Louis (Robert De Niro) arrested so she can evade arrest and keep the money. I’ve only seen this film once, and don’t think I was able to fully appreciate the story and acting. I’ve heard De Niro’s performance in here is often overlooked. I think I was caught off guard by how tame the film was in comparison to what I expected, but when I think back there was a good amount of violence. I will revisit this soon.
5. Django Unchained (2012)
Django Unchained is the newest film in QT’s body of work and quite possibly the funniest. It’s an re-envisioned look on slavery; essentially it’s about a man named Django (Jamie Foxx) who wants to rescue his wife from Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio), with the aid of German Bounty Hunter Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz). The film is controversial for it’s use of language, most importantly the N word which was used to an extreme amount. Personally, I did not find it to be a problem, since the film was placed in the days of Slavery, I think if anything the men could have said things a lot worst then the N word. The problem I do have with this film that it could have been shortened in length but i’ll take it. The acting here is superb with Waltz and DiCaprio giving career best type material, and the former earned an Oscar. Everybody else gives solid contributions as well. I love the story and route it takes even though it can get brutal (Mandingo Fight) This is a prime example of how the common theme of Revenge can still be exciting. The most memorable scene is the KKK argument.
4. Kill Bill Vol 1 & 2 (2003/2004)
Tarantino’s fourth and fifth films are Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2. The films carry a stylistic approach, that’s equipped with a lot of great action with Samurai swords. Vol 1 introduces you to The Bride (Uma Thurman) aka Black Mamba who was a member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. That very squad attempted to assassinate her during her wedding while she was pregnant. Four Years later she awakens hell-bent on getting her revenge. Her plan is to kill the members who helped the ring leader Bill (David Carradine) and finish him off last. The two films are different in tone, Vol 1 is more action based, whereas Vol. 2 brings a more emotional tone to the film. I’ve seen Vol 1 four times now but Vol. 2 only once, So you can see which one I favor more, however I want to see vol. 2 again because by no means was it not a great film I just wasn’t expecting that route. Packed with great cast from Uma Thurman, Lucy Liu, Michael Madsen, David Carradine, and more. The most memorable scenes are the showdown with the Crazy 88, and the fight with Elle Driver.
3. Reservoir Dogs (1992)
The First film by Tarantino that was released in 1992, that was the year I was born but I’m sure he shocked Cinema with this film. Reservoir Dogs is told in non-linear fashion about a diamond heist that goes wrong. All the men involved in the heist are given colour code names; unfortunately Steve Buscemi is stuck with Mr. Pink, while the likes of Harvey Keitel receives Mr. White and Tim Roth receives Mr. Orange. The film is fierce in it’s power and violence equipped with K Billy’s Super Sounds of the Seventies aka Tarantino’s best soundtrack; all in a perfect run time of 100 minutes. The rest of the cast is great with Michael Madsen, Chris Penn, Lawrence Tierney, Quentin Tarantino and Edward Bunker. The most memorable scenes is basically the whole film but if I had to narrow it down it would be the famous ear scene, and the Mexican standoff.
2. Inglourious Basterds (2009)
Coming in at number 2 is Inglourious Basterds, now if I remember correctly this is the first Tarantino film that I watched, and surprisingly I thought it was boring and fell asleep relatively early. I know some of you are thinking how in the world did that happen, and I wonder the same thing myself. I watched it soon after managed to finish it. Now that I know a more about films I am in love with it. The acting, writing, locations, and re-envisioned look at WW2 is a recipe for greatness. A majority of this film spread out in different languages, German, French, English and Italian. The story takes place in Nazi-occupied France, a theater owner (Mélanie Laurent) has a plan for revenge against the Nazi leader Col. Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz). On the other side of things is a group of Jewish American soldiers who are in the business of killing nazi’s. Led by Lt. Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt) and in the words of Lt. Aldo Raine “business is a boomin”. The cast is great, Christoph Waltz gives his best performance to date which earned him an Oscar, Brad Pitt, Mélanie Laurent, Eli Roth, Michael Fassbender, Diane Kruger, and more. There are a lot of subtexts within this film which gives a person many reasons to come back to the film other than the violence that occurs. Inglourious Basterds just edges it out above Reservoir Dogs, and slightly below my number 1 pick. The most memorable scene here is The Bear Jew.
1. Pulp Fiction (1994)
To no surprise Pulp Fiction is the undisputed champion here. The most memorable dialogue in all of Tarantino’s films, and cinema itself lies in this film. “The lives of two mob hit men (Samuel L. Jackson & John Travolta), a boxer (Bruce Willis), a gangster’s wife (Uma Thurman), and a pair of diner bandits (Tim Roth & Amanda Plummer) intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.” As if that’s not stellar cast already, you can include Christopher Walken, Ving Rhames, and Harvey Keitel to that list. There is so much going on in this film that makes it hard to explain in a short paragraph. When people ask me about this film I tell them that it’s dark comedy, with some of the best dialogue you’ll ever see in a film. Pulp Fiction made it’s mark in cinema and pop culture, as Vincent & Jules conversation about the dangers of foot massages and the Royale with Cheese still resonate today in this generation. This film highlights the revenge, the storytelling, and violence exceptionally well. The most memorable scenes are the Say What Again, The Basement, and Final Cafe scene.
Well that concludes my list of Tarantino’s best films, thanks for checking it out. Of QT’s other work that he’s written I’ve seen From Dusk Till Dawn and True Romance, and If I included them into the list they would have been in-between 7 and 6.
I’m interested in hearing what your pick is for his top three best films? Leave a comment below if so