“Reservoir Dogs” was released in 1992 and starred Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, and Steve Buscemi. This film has since become a classic since its release due to the talent of its brilliant writer/director: Quentin Tarantino. This was his first major feature-film, and many people consider it to be one of his best. The film’s plot is quite simple: a team of jewel thieves regroup in a warehouse after a heist goes horribly wrong, and they have to figure out who was the mole in their crew that set them up. What makes this film unique, other than Tarantino’s classic dialogue and violence (this movie is extremely R-rated), is that the audience never actually sees the jewel heist. All we see is the aftermath of the heist, which turns out to be a lot more interesting.
My favorite aspect of “Reservoir Dogs” is the ensemble cast. All of the actors, especially Keitel and Buscemi, are excellent at delivering Tarantino’s banter. The actors really enhanced the script and made the film even more entertaining and exciting. All of the actors had a great chemistry between each other too; Keitel & Roth had an almost older sibling/younger sibling relationship, and Keitel & Buscemi had a relationship similar to that of an old married couple.
My favorite performance of the film was given by Michael Madsen, who played Mr. Blonde, A.K.A. Vic Vega. His character is meant to be very unstable and violent, and Madsen sold that so well. He played Mr. Blonde as very calm and collected maniac even though the character enjoyed killing others, and I have to give him praise for making Mr. Blonde uniquely threatening and entertaining.
Of course, I also have to mention Tarantino’s signature dialogue and wild script. He did a great job of making the film unpredictable and intense; every twist and character death, especially the Mexican standoff, felt surprising while satisfying (unlike “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”). I honestly don’t have a single complaint about this film’s dialogue, character motivations, setups, or payoffs.
My only problem with the film is that it feels a little slow at times despite its 1h 40m runtime. The movie has some flashbacks spread throughout its story, and while they are mostly good, a few of them, namely the introduction to Mr. Blonde’s character, drag too much. If about 5-8 minutes of the movie were shaved off, the narrative and pacing would improve.
I love “Reservoir Dogs.” It is an original, bold film that lives up to its ambitions and provides a very entertaining story despite its small budget. Say what you want about Quentin Tarantino as a person, but he is super talented and knows how to craft an artistic yet fun & unpretentious movie. Tarantino said he will only make ten films (his next one is his last), but I hope he continues filmmaking. “Reservoir Dogs” is the type of movie that makes me love movies.
Classic Film Reviews #7: https://reelopinion.com/2020/12/18/citizen-kane-classic-film-reviews-7/