A Quentin Tarantino Quarantine Marathon



All of the characters in Quentin Tarantino’s filmography.

Gavin Clingham, Staff Writer

As we’ve been quarantined at home, many of us have done our schoolwork and then binged on Netflix series, played games, baked sugary treats, or made crafts. But I have taken advantage of the extra time I’ve had to watch every single Quentin Tarantino movie. Now, if you don’t know who Quentin Tarantino is, you’ve missed out on a lot. He is a filmmaker who’s well known by movie goers for his brilliant dialogue and entertaining style of filmmaking, and he’s well known for his love of violence. His films involve a lot of ’70s-like film techniques, incorporations of some really great music, eerie POV (point of view) shots, many shots of women’s feet, Mexican standoffs, and—of course—violence. His movies have an awesome visual flair to them. The only sad thing is that he plans to only direct and write ten movies and then he’ll retire. He’s only one movie away. I’m proud to say that I’ve seen his nine incredible films.

Still image from Reservoir Dogs. businessinsider.com

Reservoir Dogs

This was the film that first introduced the world to Tarantino. You can see that there are some growing pains and it’s one of his more quiet films. I’d say it’s like a smaller scale version of The Usual Suspects. My family hated it because some of it doesn’t hold up well today and it does feel a bit long at times. However, I think that the film’s exciting twists and individual stories keep it going. It has the right amount of monologues and action, great dialogue, and interesting music to make for a solid film. The only thing is that you will probably never hear the song, “Stuck in the Middle with You” the same way ever again.

Still image from Pulp Fiction. sbs.com.au

Pulp Fiction

Sure, Reservoir Dogs was the first big movie of Tarantino, but Pulp Fiction showed everyone that he was a sheer force to be reckoned with. It’s rightfully regarded as one of the greatest movies of all time as it is catapulted by a pretty terrific screenplay filled with legendary dialogue and a nicely woven plot. It’s a screenplay that manages to perfectly blend together themes of comedy, crime, and thriller, with a little bit of drama. And as a bonus it has fun and truly committed performances from Samuel L. Jackson and Uma Thurman. If you haven’t seen this film, you haven’t experienced one of the most hard-hitting pieces of cinema.

Still image from Jackie Brown. mentalfloss.com

Jackie Brown

Now, this one is probably my least favorite one, which isn’t saying much because this is just compared to his other amazing films. My problem with this one was that it was incredibly confusing. There’s a lot you have to know before going into it. I think the reason I didn’t like this one might’ve been that it was based on a book. The plot is quite confusing and many things are left out, but Tarantino saves it by adding a bit more clearness as well as his usual flair. Also, Jackie Brown is a very well-written character and Pam Grier does a wonderful job portraying her as empowering and strong-willed. 

Still image from Kill Bill Vol. 1. thespool.net

Kill Bill Vol. 1

I liked Kill Bill because Tarantino made it like it was really a ’70s movie. It may be what would now be considered a basic story but Tarantino backs this film up with some truly thrilling action and, as usual, he worked from an awesome screenplay. It’s absolutely one of the most bonkers revenge stories of all time, and I love it. Once again, Uma Thurman gives a committed performance but this time she really shows how she can portray the empowering and awesome character, “The Bride.” I love how quick-moving the film is and how you could really see why it and Kill Bill Vol 2 were intended to be one whole movie. It’s the perfect movie for anyone that loves both classic and modern action-revenge stories.

Still image from Kill Bill Vol. 2. observer.com

Kill Bill Vol. 2

Like I said above, both Kill Bill movies were meant to be one whole movie. This was the follow-up movie that completes the quest that The Bride set out on. It doesn’t have as much action as the first one, but it dives deep into the mysteries of the first one, and when there is action, it’s epic and bloody. Once again, Thurman gives an incredible performance and this time around, she’s even more strong-willed than the first one. The first one was the best one for action and while this one is pretty great too, this one focuses on the more silent aspect of it, which isn’t half bad. It’s said to be the lesser half of the movie, but I think when you put the two of them together consecutively, both halves are equally great. 

Still image from Inglorious Basterds. thetimesofisrael.com

Inglourious Basterds

This film began the Tarantino revenge trilogy. This one takes revenge in World War II. Like Pulp Fiction, it has separate stories that all connect to each other. The stories each center around a group of Nazi-killing Americans called the Basterds. This film was very strong. Just as expected, the screenplay was excellent, but it also beat my already high expectations. It was certainly a long one, but it’s safe to say that it did earn its runtime. One second you’re satisfied with the film, the next you realize it’s already noon. The film is mostly subtitled but it has the usual Tarantino flair that keeps you on the edge of your seat. 

Still image from Django Unchained. hollywoodreporter.com

Django Unchained

Out of the nine films made by Tarantino, this one is my second favorite. The reason I love it so much is because I just expected it to be a lot like Kill Bill; just a fun revenge movie. When I actually saw it, I was surprised once again at the incredible style brought by Tarantino. It not only has great action and great dialogue, but it also has a lot of humor. The film is quite long, so it was pleasant to see how comedic elements carried me through and allowed me not to feel the runtime. One other major high is Leonardo DiCaprio’s outstanding performance. Even though he’s the main villain (according to Tarantino he’s actually the only villain he didn’t love), he is absolutely vicious and presents an absolute master class of acting.

Still image from The Hateful Eight. slashfilm.com

The Hateful Eight

I was told that this film is really boring, poorly scripted, too long, and garbage compared to every other movie. Promptly after watching the film, I disagreed with every single statement. Everything I wrote in the first sentence was hard to write. It is long but it is a film that very much earns its runtime. The script is spectacular, as usual, and I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. Sure, it’s not his best compared to everything else, but it is a really special one. It was a lot more violent than I had expected, though (even compared to Tarantino’s standards). The film still kept me going through and kept me hooked. Another big high was Jennifer Jason Leigh, who plays the prisoner in the movie. She brought a large amount of intensity to the role while giving off some comedic relief to go along with it. I take back what I said in 2016 when I didn’t want her to win Best Supporting Actress. 

Still image from Once upon a Time…in Hollywood. tyla.com

Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood

Tarantino stated that this is his love letter to Hollywood and the closest he’s gotten to Pulp Fiction. While I think it’s hard to say this is exactly like Pulp Fiction, I still love it. It may not have the craziest story, but Tarantino brings his usual thrills to keep you going through the movie. It’s a lot more of an actual comedy; it’s an homage for people who love the golden age of cinema because it has an almost perfect recreation of it. From the production design to the whole feel, you are easily immersed into the world of the past. And without spoilers, the end scene is amazing. I could just write a whole review on it because I love it that much. I’d go as far to say it’s even more satisfying than the last half of Avengers: Endgame. It’s a scene that makes paying for four tickets worth it. Also, Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio have great chemistry. 

Without a doubt, I can now say that Quentin Tarantino is one of my favorite filmmakers. He has made films that are not only fun to watch but are just pure gold. I don’t think I’ve ever watched a bunch of movies and actually felt a rush of excitement run through me. In this quarantine, his films are a perfect binge-watch. They’re fun, hilarious, well-scripted, and incredibly stylistic. You’ll have an absolute blast watching them (especially Pulp Fiction).