Blood splatter, engaging dialogue, and the excessive use of the n-word have never given such a profoundly humorous and engaging mixture until Tarantino put his stamp on all these now considered trademarks. He takes the revenge fantasy and twists it like a braid with the other notable genres from the histories of film and makes it his own.
From the heist film to the gangster/crime genres to even westerns and kung-fu, he makes these genres in a way only he can produce, all while giving us some of the most iconic films and characters of all time.
With his latest film, The Hateful Eight, being released on Christmas Day of this year I felt it was appropriate to start bringing his name up on some of these lists. I am ranking his seven current films in order from my least favorite to my favorite. All lists are subjective and I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts in the comments below.
P.S. Death Proof doesn’t count because that was a fraction of a Robert Rodriguez film rather than a full blown direction by Tarantino himself.
7. Jackie Brown (1997): Jackie Brown is one of those movies that breaks the norm for Tarantino which can be a good thing and a not so good thing. This is IMO the most dialogue heavy of all of his films and it feels as long as it’s run time ends up being. The cast is, of course great, and while the acting is on par with plenty of other greats films, it tends to drag on a bit comparatively to most of his other movies. With that being said, there is an art to his madness that can be appreciated after a first viewing and it will have you talking about it for years to come.
6. Kill Bill Vol. 2 (2004): As much as I love this as a sequel to a film was intended by the director to be an epic solo film, I like it a lot, but I can’t I love it like I do the next few films on the list. The action is captivating in the most viseral fashion (like all things Tarantino does) and underrated dialogue by many of the characters is overlooked to a point it’s almost criminal, but even with the punches it packs, it’s just not up there like the next five films.
5. Reservoir Dogs (1992): This was the untouchable film for me for the longest time and once you see it, you will understand why. Heavy dialogue that hits your bloodstream like venom feels equally as potent the first and second time you toughen out the violence and talking scattered all throughout. Reservoir Dogs is excellently crafted madness that masquerades as a heist film and a gangster flick.
4. Kill Bill Vol. 1 (2003): People often say this is the lesser of the two part film series, but there is something about the kung fu aspects and the blood splattering action that I find more enjoyable. Though the western vibes to the second Kill Bill movie takes a western turn for the better in some aspects, it’s Vol. 1 that takes the cake for me. One of the most iconic female characters in history while having a compelling and classic revenge story that everyone can sink their teeth into, it goes as underrated in Q.T.’s catalog.
3. Pulp Fiction (1994): When you think of Q.T. you think Pulp Fiction and why wouldn’t you? This is the film that skyrocketed his career to what it is now. It is his staple film that brought us a new dimension of screenwriting and all around direction, not to mention it gave life back to John Travolta’s once stagnant career. If it wasn’t for that horrid “gimp” scene I’d have this movie maybe even at number two, but that just gets me in the worst way every time.
2. Inglourious Basterds (2009): No, this is not a full blown war film, but instead a foreign language masterpiece that has Tarantino’s classic ensembles he is known for creating. Waltz is one of the most terrifying Nazi’s captured on film while Brad Pitt among other superb actors work their magic in Tarantino’s sixth film. It was a film I didn’t even like at first, but after a second viewing you realize what a fool you are if you don’t like Inglourious Basterds.
1. Django Unchained (2012): Arguably a Top-5 film of mine, there is everything you want from a great film in here whether it be action, comedy, or drama. The set pieces are superb and the acting is top notch. For 165 minutes, you are swept into a story about a slave turned bounty hunter that is given his freedom from a superbly cast Kristoph Waltz as Dr. King Shultz, and the rest is history. It tackles the revenge fantasy that Tarantino writes excellently while breeding heavy drama with over the top violence. It’s a constant re-watch no matter the day.