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  • Writer's pictureMasoud Kazemi

Reservoir Dogs: A Tarantino Classic

Reservoir Dogs, Quentin Tarantino's first feature film released in 1992, might also be one of his greatest.


Reservoir Dogs is the first feature film by Quentin Tarantino that premiered in 1992. The movie tells the aftermath of a gone-south bank heist, focusing on each member of the heist crew. The film stars Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Chris Penn, and Steve Buscemi, who play various crew members with different backgrounds and storylines. While Tarantino is known for his more famous films, including Pulp Fiction and Inglourious Basterds, there is no doubt that his first-ever film is one of his greatest.

Engaging Story & Dialogues

While Tarantino is mainly known for making highly violent movies, Reservoir Dogs shows how much of a good writer Tarantino is. Of course, there is still the element of gore in the story and visuals, but due to the small budget of the film, Tarantino needed to sacrifice the action and instead delivered the best scripts he has ever written. The dialogues are on point, help the story and characters develop, and are also quite funny. This film is a perfect example of how limitations can turn into an opportunity. Since Tarantino didn’t have a huge budget to work with, he couldn’t showcase long action sequences and instead focused more on the storyline and substance of the film. However, he couldn’t have pulled this film off without the help of his co-stars.

Acting On Point

Indie films seldom succeed without the aid of spectacular cast performances, and that’s what this film contains. Each actor is charming, smooth, and mysterious, bringing their roles as criminals to life. As stated earlier, the development of the roles is spot on and relatively rapid, as we get to know each of the heist crew’s personalities within 10 minutes. Each cast member plays a different type of character; one is the sarcastic guy of the bunch, the other the wise guy, the dumb guy, and so forth. But it’s the dialogue that really separates and showcases the differences between each performance.

Captivating Cinematography

A debut director rarely showcases an extraordinary level of knowledge regarding cinematography and how to shoot a scene properly. That’s why most directors start with a short film. However, Tarantino is different. With the help of Andrzej Sekula, Reservoir Dogs contains some of the most iconic shots in cinematic history. The highlight is during a standoff scene where multiple characters point their guns at each other. Some characters were on the ground while others were higher, showing the audience that some characters have the upper hand in the fight. And, of course, we also see the infamous Tarantino trunk shot that he made famous, which many other directors used afterward.

Closing Critiques

Reservoir Dogs is among the best works of Quentin Tarantino, which shows his talent for writing an engaging story and script. The characters are well-done, and the acting is on point to deliver the motion required and charisma to make the characters charming. Even though this is Tarantino’s first feature film, how he uses the camera is fantastic, and we can see his knowledge of filmmaking shine here.

Raving Rating: 8.6

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