Today, I undertake the excruciating task of ranking all eight of legendary filmmaker Quentin Tarantino's films. This list has been done thousands of times, no doubt, and each one has probably ranked the movies slightly differently. Now, I'm almost willing to bet more than a few of you are thinking, "Only eight films? I've seen many more than just these select eight movies that Tarantino directed!" Allow me to clear this up. The simple answer is that these eight movies are 'fully' Quentin Tarantino's. He wrote and directed them, while with other movies he has written and directed, he had assistance or only wrote one part of it. Take Sin City for example; Tarantino only directed one scene in the entire movie.
Also, for simplicity's sake, I will be counting Kill Bill as one movie, because it was intended to be one movie, but was over the 4-hour running time and had to be cut into two. However, it was written, shot, and edited as one movie. Also, instead of ranking the entirety of Grindhouse, which had multiple directors, I will be only ranking Death Proof, since Tarantino directed that portion. With all of that being said, let us begin!
8. 'Death Proof' (2007)
Death Proof is Quentin Tarantino's weakest film, and that's saying something, because it is still a really freakin' good film! Starring Kurt Russell as a psychopathic stuntman who murders young women with his so-called "Death Proof" car, this movie has a couple of the goriest scenes that I've seen recently. The main issue with this film is all the padding. There's so much dialogue and not enough explosions and car crashes for a movie with "death" in its name. Also, it doesn't have Samuel L. Jackson in it at all!
7. 'Jackie Brown' (1997)
Starring Pam Grier as the title character, Jackie Brown follows an in-flight attendant who, to make ends meet, smuggles drugs across on the airline. Jackie Brown held my attention the entire movie from start to finish. Grier and her co-star, Robert Forester, are both incredible, and Samuel Jackson has said it is his favorite of Tarantino's works.
6. 'Kill Bill' (2003-2004)
Starring Uma Thurman as "Black Mamba," an assassin who was betrayed by her own band of assassins, Kill Bill tells the ultimate story of revenge. Filled with tons of lore and action, the film is definitely worth watching. The action scenes are filmed in a way that are cheesy, but keep you on the edge of your seat. Tarantino has also mentioned the possibility of a sequel, and says he even has everything planned out. What a guy!
5. 'Inglourious Basterds' (2009)
I think that Inglourious Basterds has my favorite setting of any Tarantino film. The film takes place in World War II, and jumps back and forth between two separate plots that eventually tie together (sorta). Brad Pitt plays Lt. Aldo Raine, who leads a group of Jewish American (and a German) soldiers who plan to take out the infamous Nazi Leader himself, Adolf Hitler. Meanwhile, Shosanna, a girl who survived her entire family being murdered, plans to burn down her movie theater that Hitler will be at. Christopher Waltz plays an absolutely terrifying Nazi general, Hans Landa. Large parts of the movie are in French and German, so be prepared to read.
4. 'The Hateful Eight' (2015)
These next four took me quite a while to place, because they're all so good. The Hateful Eight is Tarantino's most recent film. So recent, in fact, you can still go and see it in theaters. Right now. Go. Why are you still reading this? The cast of The Hateful Eight is incredible, and probably my second favorite of all of the Tarantino films. Samuel L Jackson, Kurt Russel, Tim Roth, and Tarantino newcomers Jennifer Jason Lee and Channing Tatum all play their roles perfectly. Taking place in post-Civil War Wyoming, this murder mystery will definitely keep you on your seat for the entirety of the film.
3. 'Django Unchained' (2012)
This quote pictured above perfectly describes my attitude towards Django Unchained during my first viewing. The first half hour pulled me from a "this will be a decent movie" attitude to an "I will own this movie when it releases." Starring Jamie Foxx as Django, a slave searching for his wife, and Christopher Waltz as Dr. King Shultz, a German-born bounty hunter posing as a dentist, Django instantly attaches you to each character as they cause ruckus. Funny, dramatic, intense, and heartfelt, Django Unchained is not only one of my favorite Tarantino films, but one of my favorite films in general.
2. 'Pulp Fiction' (1994)
I'll probably be hanged for not placing this in the number one slot, but that's a risk I'm willing to take. Starring John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson as hitmen, this story is one to interest the masses. There are many main characters and the story jumps back and forth between all of their stories. So, you may see one character get shot full of lead only to see them a few minutes later in someone else's story, which took place beforehand. It's convoluted, but charming in its own right. This is a must watch, just as every other movie on this list is, but I'm not playing around here. If you haven't seen Pulp Fiction yet, stop whatever you're doing and go watch it. It's on Netflix.
Which means, the #1 Tarantino film is.....
1. 'Reservoir Dogs' (1992)
Reservoir Dogs! Tarantino proves that the first is sometimes the best. Reservoir Dogs stars Quentin himself (as he almost always has a cameo), Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Harvey Keitel, Steve Buscemi, and Chris Penn — my favorite cast in any Tarantino film. The plot centers around a group of thieves who attempt to pull off the perfect heist, only for the police to be waiting for them when they get there. It turns into a shootout, and while in hiding, the members determine that one of their own is a police informant. Deception, torture, and murder ensue. I've seen this movie more times than I can count, and that may be what pushed it over the edge for me, rather than Pulp Fiction. I can watch this movie back to back and notice some tiny new feature that holds my interest. I can watch Pulp Fiction endlessly as well, but only once a week or so. You probably think I'm kidding, but I'm not. I probably watch Pulp Fiction or Reservoir Dogs once a week.
Let me know in the comments what your favorite Tarantino movie is and why it's your favorite! There are no wrong answers. Thank you so much for reading, and be sure to check back frequently for more!