Quentin Tarantino – A Filmography Complete

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I’ve sat and waited for a film in this man’s canon that I wasn’t hell-bent on watching again. It didn’t come. And most of the time, I got the notion that these films needed to be watched again merely halfway through a viewing.

Unless you count his lost film My Best Friend’s Birthday–which remains only as the basis for Tony Scott’s True Romance, which I haven’t seen either–I have now seen every film directed by Tarantino.  Yes, even Four Rooms, which was a total screwup on his part.

I’ve also seen every additional piece he’s written for the screen. I may do a post on the two Tarantino universes (the “heightened reality” universe and the “movie-movie” universe), which both include the three films for which he is written (and not directed) input. But for now, I’m just commenting on the films he has directed.

Anyway:

QT is easy proof that as long as he or she knows what he or she is doing, the greatest of filmmakers are, first and foremost, avid film watchers.

So here’s my personal best-to-worst list of Tarantino’s consistently outstanding oeuvre. Please let me know your list in the comments, even if you’ve only seen a partial quantity of his films.

If you haven’t seen any, get on it. Now.

Well, after perusing the list, and reading the Leonard Maltin-esque reviews I’ve included to go along with each one:

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Released in the US on October 14, 1994.  Starring John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Uma Thurman, Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer, Maria de Medeiros, Ving Rhames, Eric Stoltz, Rosanna Arquette, Christopher Walken, and Bruce Willis.  Runs 2 hours, 34 minutes.  Won an Academy Award – Best Original Screenplay (by Quentin Tarantino and Roger Avary).  Nominated for six others – Best Picture (produced by Lawrence Bender), Best Director (Quentin Tarantino), Best Actor (John Travolta), Best Supporting Actress (Uma Thurman), Best Supporting Actor (Samuel L. Jackson), and Best Film Editing (by Sally Menke).

One of the most quotable movies ever made, with some of the most brilliant writing the crime genre has ever warranted.  QT is in love with dialogue here, and he’s constantly breaking new ground: the opening sequences featuring the unplanned robbery of a restaurant; the credits that suddenly switch background music from Dick Dale’s “Misirlou” to Kool & the Gang’s “Jungle Boogie” with a transitional record scratch; the small talk Vincent (John Travolta) and Jules (Samuel L. Jackson) have over cheeseburgers and foot massages.  Mind you, that’s barely the first twenty minutes.

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Released in the US on August 21, 2009.  Starring Brad Pitt, Christoph Waltz, Michael Fassbender, Eli Roth, Diane Kruger, Daniel Brühl, Til Schweiger, and Mélanie Laurent.  Runs 2 hours, 33 minutes.  Won an Academy Award – Best Supporting Actor (Christoph Waltz).  Nominated for seven others – Best Picture (produced by Lawrence Bender), Best Director (Quentin Tarantino), Best Original Screenplay (by Quentin Tarantino), Best Cinematography (by Robert Richardson), Best Film Editing (by Sally Menke), Best Sound Editing (by Wylie Stateman), and Best Sound (by Michael Minkler, Tony Lamberti, and Mark Ulano).

If only World War II was actually like this.  This is a revisionist flick in which movies control everything; the title itself is an homage to a Dirty Dozen-like Italian war movie, The Inglorious Bastards.  The tale concerns two coexisting attempts to destroy Nazi Germany’s reign: one with a group of Jewish Americans relying on traditional guerrilla warfare; the other with a Jewish movie theater owner who will burn down the movie theater her aunt passed down to her, if it means taking Nazi power out of her French residence.

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Released in the US on December 25, 2012.  Starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson, Walton Goggins, Dennis Christopher, James Remar, Michael Parks, and Don Johnson.  Runs 2 hours, 45 minutes.  Won two Academy Awards – Best Original Screenplay (by Quentin Tarantino) and Best Supporting Actor (Christoph Waltz).  Nominated for three others – Best Cinematography (by Robert Richardson), Best Picture (produced by Stacey Sher, Reginald Hudlin, and Pilar Savone), and Best Sound Editing (by Wylie Stateman).

The entire cast is brilliant, the script is that of an auteur, and it’s worth every minute.  ‘Nuff said.

Kill Bill 1 and 2

Vol. 1 released in the US on October 10, 2003.  Vol. 2 released in the US on April 16, 2004.  Collectively starring Uma Thurman, David Carradine, Lucy Liu, Vivica A. Fox, Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah, Gordon Liu, and Julie Dreyfus.  Runs a total of 4 hours, 7 minutes (Vol. 1 – 1 hour, 51 minutes; Vol. 2 – 2 hours, 16 minutes).

 This is the role Uma Thurman was born to take on.  The Bride, a character she co-created with Tarantino, is an ex-member of the “Deadly Viper Assassination Squad.”  After being left for dead at the scene of her own wedding, she swears revenge on Bill (David Carradine), her ex-boss.  But first, she must take out four others on her hit list, as well as a barrage of elite Japanese killers known as “the Crazy 88’s.”  The film is often wild, particularly during the more exhilarating first “volume,” but it’s QT’s lack of self-restraint that makes it immensely watchable, as both a double feature and as two completely separate films.

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Released in the US on December 25, 1997.  Starring Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster, Bridget Fonda, Michael Keaton, Robert de Niro, and Chris Tucker.  Runs 2 hours, 34 minutes.  Nominated for an Academy Award – Best Supporting Actor (Robert Forster).

Elmore Leonard’s 1992 novel Rum Punch is adapted for the screen as a star vehicle for actress Pam Grier.  The film pays homage to the popular “blaxploitation” genre of the 1970s, to which Grier herself was a figure, and is just as much cheesy fun (though the cheese is, of course, intended).  Robert Forster’s Oscar nomination marked his supporting role accurately, but the Oscar-snubbed Samuel L. Jackson is the real star of the show.  Tarantino’s screenplay doesn’t quite have a grasp on his characteristic lack of self-restraint when working off source material that isn’t his, but when he starts having fun with dialogue in this talkative flick, the movie goes to town.

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Released in the US on April 6, 2007.  Starring Kurt Russell, Rosario Dawson, Vanessa Ferlito, Jordan Ladd, Rose McGowan, Sydney Tamiia Poitier, Tracie Thoms, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and Zoë Bell.  Runs 1 hour, 27 minutes, plus an additional 7 minutes of faux trailers.  Extended and unrated edition runs 1 hour, 54 minutes.

Or, you might say, The Adventures of Dr. Misogynous and His Death-Proof Vehicle.  This 2006 film works well as a followup to Tarantino’s Kill Bill.  The plot is nothing more than women with a burning desire for revenge on a senselessly misogynous man; it’s fitted to work as the second half of Grindhouse, QT’s “double feature” with Robert Rodriguez.  But on the other hand, this is twice as stylish as Kill Bill (if that’s possible), and barely any of the style rings the nostalgia of “grindhouse movies,” as much as it rings QT’s self-referential filmmaking.  Any way you slice it, though, it flies by with QT’s love for dialogue and action.

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Released in the US on October 23, 1992.  Starring Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Chris Penn, Steve Buscemi, Lawrence Tierney, and Michael Madsen.  Runs 1 hour, 39 minutes.

Tarantino’s feature debut concerns parallel stories of a jewelry heist.  The nonlinear structure may not make as much sense as it should, and the pinpointed heist isn’t truly mentioned until nearly eighty percent of the movie has gone by, but you can see streaks of genius here already.  While one or two scenes of violence remain the only truly mindless ones in QT’s canon (those who don’t appreciate the black humor may beg to differ), this curtain-opener also features one of the most tasteful employments of violence since The Godfather.  “Here I am, stuck in the middle with you.”

My review of Grindhouse (the double feature with Tarantino’s Death Proof operating as the latter segment) is scheduled for tomorrow…

STAY TUNED!

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11 thoughts on “Quentin Tarantino – A Filmography Complete

  1. In all honestly, while the big twist near the end of Broken City really confused me and my dad(my dad couldn’t even explain the twist to me because he didn’t understand it either!!) I actually really enjoyed it as an action thriller and Mark Wahlberg is getting better every time with every action, film he’s in–in my opinion!! I would give Broken City a B+ and if you ignore the predictable elements until the end, I’m sure you’d enjoy it!!
    I didn’t like Jack The Giant Slayer all that much!! My friend who went with me said it had a
    Lord Of The Rings feel to it–which I know I should see, but because it’s over 3hrs long(one of them-I’m guessing the 2nd one is 3 1/2 long!!) I can’t stand that!! It’s Too long and boring for me!!

    Anyways, sorry about going off topic there!!
    Jack The Giant Sayer had some okay action sequences and fine acting and I did really enjoy Ewan McGregor in the movie !! His character was honestly the best part of the movie!! It wasn’t really all that special and fun for me!! A C+ for me!! I didn’t even like the visuals and the musical score!! It tried to be is fun epic adventure that just seemed to be really over-exaggerated and over-rated in my opinion!!
    Okay action, but some of the action sequences were way too over-the-top, silly, dumb, and epic and in a negative opinion!! With fine acting and dialogue and truly decent and fun performances by Ewan McGregor(from The Impossible=B for me!! It was just too slow paced for me-almost got really bored until the shocking last 30 minutes of the film) and Nicolas Hoult(from Warm Bodies-Warm Bodies=B during first watch-C+ now after thinking about it)- that’s all the positive elements I can say about Jack The Giant Slayer- Unimpressive visuals and a unsatisfying and loud musical score with action sequences too silly, dumb, and loud, and you’ve got a mediocre adventure that’s not all the great or fun!!

    Arnold and The Expendables-
    I really enjoyed The Expendables 2!! But not the first Expendables-too much slow-mo scenes involving blood literally shooting out of mercenaries’ bodies!!
    The Expendables 2 knew what it was-fun, stupid, silly, dumb, crazy, violent mayhem!!
    There was a scene involving the Expendables trapped in a cave that lasted about 10 minutes, but was a little too slow-paced it seemed like more than 10 minutes!! Luckily the last 20 minutes of the movie is so much crazy violent fun that I actually makes up for that short slow-paced scene!!
    The Expendables-Too serious too corny and too bloody!! A D-
    The Expendables 2-I can’t believeI’m saying this—A-
    Anyways I just got The Last Stand from Netflix and I’m going to watch it with my family!
    I like it when actors who are in their old prime like Bruce Wills or even Stallone or Arnold still make fun of them being old and cranky!! That’s just funny and fun to me!! Plus you get the usual laughably crazy and insane action!!

    I honestly enjoyed White House Down-I a lot of critics and other people who have seen it thought it was too much a repeat to Olympus Has Fallen: Here is my review of Olympus Has Fallen before I get to my thoughts on White House Down!!
    Olympus Has Fallen Rant: Honestly, I didn’t really like that movie:Just like Giant Slayer: Stupid, Dumb, Cliched, Predictable, Loud, head-shakingly-OMG-awful action sequences, an annoying character played by the annoying-in-every-movie-he’s-in-Gerard Butler, and a dumb final act!! Olympus Has Fallen gets a D- because the scenes involving the Secretary Of State were actually intense and an emotionally shocking and intense first five minutes are the only “worthy or positive elements about this movie” There was one supporting Secret Service Agent character that was so annoying that I wanted her character to be killed by the bad guys!
    My Rant On White House Down: A better, more fun and enjoyable action-White-House-takeover-film!!
    Channing Tatum is actually an actor I’ve liked since I saw 21 Jump Street(Is it funny?!? Yes! it is actually pretty funny! Is it more-than pretty funny, like really funny or extremely funny?!? No because it’s not as funny as it should’ve and could’ve been though!! A B+!!)
    Channing has proved to be an intelligent actor!! He and Jamie Foxx(who plays the President) have the perfect chemistry that’s a surprising mix of humor, enjoyment, and a little…just a little bit of heart!!
    Channing Tatum plays Capitol Police Officer John Cale-A normal guy living in Washington D.C. And nearby the White House so he can keep the Vice President safe from danger, under his watch!! He wants to move to a higher and possibly better job by keeping the President himself safe from danger!! John(as his daughter likes to call him by his name) doesn’t the best relationship with his daughter, Emily(a repeatedly used and predictable story element is of course, always in this kind of film) and their relationship is actually one of the best elements and reasons as to why I liked this film!!
    It’s heart-warming and emotionally involving and of course, the situations the daughter gets into during the White-House-taken-hostage is of course life-threatening, silly, over-the-top, and predictable, but I actually felt or cared about her until she started acting REALLY scared and crying, which gets a bit too over the top for me, but when she stops I still continue caring about her!!
    Although the film seemed to have too many climatic acting sequences, like I felt with Django, It had one climatic action sequence, it had another climatic action scene, and one final climatic action sequences!! Basically too many climatic action sequences for White House Down
    (and Django)!! This is the main reason as to why I thought White House Down felt a little overlong and that’s why the film took longer to end in my opinion!!! White House Down is a B+ for me and so far one the better film of this summer by far and of the year for me!!

    And Pacific Rim is okay by what I’ve been reading: Fantastic visuals and Thrilling action sequences, but when there is no action and just dialogue, the film meanders on a bit, and I just don’t like those kinds of movies!!

    I recommend you seeing and/or reviewing FIVE of my favorite film if you have not seen or reviewed yet:
    5). The Blind Side-Very great movie! Inspiring True Story!! I meanders a bit slowly for its first
    30 minutes or so, but gets really better by being really inspiring!! Humor, Heart, and Uplifting!! Sandra Bullock deserves her Best Actress Oscar Win as she gives a strong, tough, and no-nonsense performance to her role!! An A-

    4). Toy Story Trilogy!! It’s Pixar!! Toy Story 1: B Toy Story 2: A Toy Story 3: A+

    3). We Bought A Zoo- Another very inspiring and uplifting true story about a widowed father named Benjamin Mee struggling to care for his two kids: Young, but always happy, upbeat and irresistibly cute daughter-Rosie and the rebellious teenage son Dylan who are all trying to make a new start in his life while still coping with the loss of Benjamin’s wife and his kid’s mother!! There are no spoilers!! This is a true plot! So Benjamin and his kids try to make a new start in their life by purchasing a house that comes with a struggling rundown zoo with Scarlett Johanson playing Kelly Foster-the kind, but lonely female zookeeper that Benjamin sort-of has feelings for!! Matt Damon is stellar and Oscar-Worthy performance as Benjamin Mee- the widowed, lonely, amd struggling father of his two children, but a man who is willing to be perspective on life and to movie forward as well as to forgive and forget while still coping with the tragedy of the loss of his wife!!
    There are two scenes emotionally beautiful and moving scenes involving Benjamin Mee thinking about his wife!! There is one scene involving this in the middle portion and another one at the final scene of the film!! While sometimes heart-breaking, We Bought A Zoo is a cheerful, charismatic, irresistible, cute, sweet, sometimes a very funny film that is just remarkable all around!! Rosie-Ben’s young daughter is such as bright, cheerful, irresistible.and funny young girl who I loved in each scene she was in and she even stole the show!! There are just a couple of preposterously goofy scenes that will make think whatever happened in that scene won’t happen in real life!! There is nice and heartfelt a love story between the rebellious teenage son and Kelly’ teenage niece-Lily!! The love story might be a little too sentimental and sweet-which you may not like as much as the rest of the story-but that love story actually connected with me!!
    The supporting characters playing the supporting zookeepers and zoo handlers are incredibly funny!! We Bought A Zoo is one of my favorite films I’ve seen and is of course an A+ in my opinion!!
    2). The Bourne Trilogy: You probably know the plot so I won’t describe it for you!! The best action film series I have seen…ever!! Matt Damon is seriously excellent as a CIA agent with a damaged soul because he is suffering from amnesia while discovering hidden secretes about his past and finding out the truth as to what really happened to him during that one mission that had gone awry and caused him to become the amnesiac agent that he really is!! Fantastic and Intense!! The second film is kind of really slow moving during its final climatic action sequence that takes a long time to end!! The third and final film in the ” Bourne Trilogy” is The Bourne Ultimatum!!
    It is THE BEST “BORUNE” film out of the three total films!! Fantastic! Exciting! Nail-Biting!! Intense!! Amazing on every way!! The Bourne Identity(Bourne1):A
    Bourne Supremacy(Bourne 2):B
    Bourne Ultimatum:A+

    1). True Grit 2010 Remake!! You probably know the plot!! I hope you do!! If you don’t know the plot, please go to http://www.imbd.com/true grit
    Exciting. Truly Exhilarating. Amazing Oscar-Worthy Cinematography.
    Fantastic Acting Performances from Jeff Bridges as alcoholic and cranky U.S. Marshall Ruben “Rooster” Cogburn, Matt Damon as the cool, but self-centered Texas Ranger LaBeouf and an Oscar-Worthy performance from Hailee Steinfield as the stubborn, no-nonsense, and determined 14-year old girl, Mattie Ross who asks “Rooster” Cogburn to come along with him to avenge the death of her father and avenge her father’s murder Tom Chaney-played in an fantastically creepy and decent performance by Josh Brolin!! The action is intense, dark, gritty, and sometimes disturbing!! The situations that Mattie Ross gets into near the end of the movie gives so much intensity and dark material to the film!! I liked how the film showed a lot of intense, dark, and gritty realism that the situations portrayed in the movie, could happen to someone else, but in a way that is not too similar in the way True Grit showed it!!! My favorite film I’ve seen!!
    Better than the Bourne Trilogy as well as being better than Bourne Ultimatum in general!! It’s better than the Toy Story Trilogy and Toy Story 3 in general and better all the past 5 films listed above!!

    I hope you accept, check out, and enjoy my 5 recommendations on movies you should and review, if you haven’t seen or reviewed the, already!!

    Please check out these top 5 YouTube channels:
    1). Schmoes Know: youtube.com/SchmoesKnow
    2). Jeremy Jahns: youtube,com/JeremyJahns
    3). Chris Stuckmann: youtube.com/ChrisStuckmann
    4). theFLICKpick: youtube.com/theFLICKpick
    John Flixinger is the host of theFLICKPICK and has another channel you should check out!’
    John Flixinger’s other YouTube channell: youtube.com/JohnFlixster

    Please tell me as much as you can on what you plan to post Sat. August 24th, which is my Birthday!! i will finally turn 17 years old!!
    So please reply back to me when you can at my preferred email address: bebe82496@gmail.com
    Thanks for reading my very extensive email!! I appreciate it!!
    Your film-pal,
    Brian D.
    Sent from my iPad Mini(A Mini Version of an iPad)

    • I started writing a reply, but soon realized that thirty minutes had passed by in my doing so. I appreciate your long comments, but they don’t always relate to the posts you’re commenting on. It only makes scrolling to the bottom of the page to leave a comment more difficult for others. With that said, would you mind sending these comments to my email instead? I don’t mean to be rude; I do appreciate that you’re consistently giving me movie recommendations, but they don’t belong in the comments sections of my most recent posts.

  2. Cool! Congrats on reaching this milestone! 😉 You know I’m a pretty big QT fan.

    My list would go a bit like this:
    1. Kill Bill (OF COURSE)
    2. Pulp Fiction
    3. Inglourious Basterds
    4. Django Unchained
    5. Death Proof
    6. Reservoir Dogs

    Haven’t seen Jackie Brown and the order might change once I rewatch the last 4, all of which I’ve only seen once.

    • Funny how our lists match up exactly, except for Kill Bill (and Jackie Brown). I’ve seen Kill Bill three times now, and all three were double features. Gets better each time. Love how the Bride’s name is censored, yet hinted at throughout the whole movie. It took me till the third viewing to pick up on these euphemisms, i.e. “Silly rabbit…Trix are for kids.”

      Jackie Brown doesn’t ride along as freely as the rest of the oeuvre, and Elmore Leonard’s source text is additionally clear through the (relative) tameness of the movie, but it’s still great fun from Tarantino. It feels more like an MTV blaxploitation flick though, the more I think about it. Hard to believe this was the first QT film I saw, and that was only a few months ago.

      You should watch the last four again. Basterds (watched three times), has some great laughs. I’ve come to appreciate the beginning quite a lot, where QT throws you off with the ominous caricature of “Für Elise”…then Christoph Waltz comes in, starts praising the cows, and leading a comparison of Jews to rats that becomes one of rats to squirrels (or rabbits, I can’t remember which). Also, there’s a hilarious foreshadowing of his next one…Django (watched twice) also gets significantly more fun on the repeated viewing. Did you notice that Paula Schultz (the Bride’s live burial site in Kill Bill) might be a relative of King Schultz? Or that Crazy Craig Koons might be related to Christopher Walken’s character in Pulp Fiction? Hmmm…

      Death Proof and Reservoir Dogs are also quite fun, if his weakest. I plan on giving both a rewatch. Did you watch Death Proof as part of Grindhouse, or as the single extended version?

      Also, I’ll have a post going up in a few weeks on everything QT’s done (writing and directing), and the easter eggs in each one, but what did you think of From Dusk Till Dawn / Natural Born Killers / True Romance?

  3. Cinemaniac can’t review any movies in theaters until his back is healed enough to allow him to sit in a theatre for that amount of time. If you give him a suggestion for what you want reviewed on the 24th I bet he will try to comply.

  4. Hey Cinemaniac- Are you going to review and/or post any 2013released film that’s either in theaters now, such as White House Down, The Conjuring, or Pacific Rim, or a newly-released-film-available for rental and buying, such as Jack The Giant Slayer, Mark Wahlberg-action-thriller-Broken City or the Arnold Schwarzenegger-action-film-The Last Stand?!?

    Also I looked to see on the “Coming Soon” section to see which movie you’re reviewing on which day and I don’t see a movie review on my birthday–
    Sat. August 24th!!! So I wondering, do you had prediction or idea of what you will be posting on that day!! I know it’s long ways away, but still I’d olike to know because now…(I’m stealing a quote from Django Unchained…

    “You have my curiousity AND you have my attention”

    • Ahh not to call “B.S.” on you or anything, but the quote is ACTUALLY…

      “Gentlemen, you had my curiosity. Now you have my attention.”

      But thanks for pointing it in my direction, regardless. 🙂

      I’m going to skip Broken City. Doesn’t look great, came out in January (that’s winter for movies, though December is still quite noticeably holiday season), and the reviews have confirmed it all.

      Pacific Rim does look pretty fun, as does The Conjuring. White House Down, not so much. Unfortunately, I can’t go to the movies till September. I just had surgery a little over three weeks ago.

      Jack the Giant Slayer, ehh…same for The Last Stand. For a film that is the Governator’s first major role in an entire decade, it looks like it’s more concerned about confirming that Conan/Terminator is gone, not on bringing him back.

      In all honesty, I’d suggest waiting a few weeks to rent a recent movie. A lot of movies from winter are hitting DVD/Blu-Ray now, while slightly better ones will hit in September/October; summer movies in November/December; and the generally equal holiday season spread from January through April.

      Though your Django quote leads me to believe that either you’re a QT fan (which is why you commented here, no?), or you need to bring yourself to become one. I’d suggest renting anything pictured in the filmography post above. 😉

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