Six criminals, who are strangers to each other, are hired by a crime boss, Joe Cabot, to carry out a diamond robbery. Right at the outset, they are given false names with the intention that they won't get too close and will concentrate on the job instead. They are completely sure that the robbery is going to be a success. But, when the police show up right at the time and the site of the robbery, panic spreads amongst the group members, and two of them are killed in the subsequent shootout, along with a few policemen and civilians. When the remaining people assemble at the premeditated rendezvous point (a warehouse), they begin to suspect that one of them is an undercover cop.Written by
The title for the film came to Quentin Tarantino via a patron at the now-famous Video Archives. While working there, Tarantino would often recommend little-known titles to customers, and when he suggested Louis Malle's Au Revoir les Enfants (1987), the patron mockingly replied, "I don't want to see no reservoir dogs!" The title is never spoken in the film, however. See more »
In the warehouse when Mr. Blonde jumps off the car and takes off his coat he has a cigarette in his mouth. In the close-up shot to his face, the cigarette is gone. See more »
Let me tell you what 'Like a Virgin' is about. It's all about a girl who digs a guy with a big dick. The entire song. It's a metaphor for big dicks.
No, no. It's about a girl who is very vulnerable. She's been fucked over a few times. Then she meets some guy who's really sensitive...
Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa... Time out Greenbay. Tell that fucking bullshit to the tourists.
Toby... Who the fuck is Toby? Toby...
'Like a Virgin' is not about this sensitive girl who meets a nice ...
[...] See more »
The opening credits leave out Writing and Directing credits. They are then shown first during the end credits. See more »
The ear slicing scene was cut in the Finnish VHS release See more »
Crime boss Joe Cabot brings together a group of criminals to perform a big one-off job. To protect each other, they all use colour coded names. However on the day of the job, the police ambush the gang and each makes their own getaway. As the gang comes together at their warehouse meeting point they realise that someone within the gang must have tipped the police or be an undercover. The accusations and suspicions escalate into violence in the confines of the warehouse.
When this film came out in the UK it caused an absolute firestorm of controversy over it's violence, even to the point that it was banned in the UK for a while. I still find this absurd and am very glad we have moved to a more tolerant society where generally the BBFC protect vulnerable groups but let adults decide for themselves. Looking at the media's adoring welcome for the ultra violent Kill Bill one can't help but marvel at how things have changed. Looking at Reservoir Dogs now (or even then!) it simply isn't THAT violent. However what it is is very sudden and all the more powerful for it.
Tarantino directs the film and writes the film in such a way that it was impossible to ignore him even if the film was only a cult hit. The dialogue is both witty at points but, more importantly, very tough and loaded with testosterone. It is the writing that makes us like these coffee shop jokers at the start before shocking us by suddenly throwing us into a backseat bloodbath. The entire job happens off camera, and only occasionally do we actually see the immediate effect of violence - usually we get the aftermath. It is incredibly tight and very tense throughout, I was about 16 when my father took me to see this film - it has stayed with me since and I still considered it to be one of the best `job gone wrong' films of my generation. It may not be original (there's a thin line between a homage and a rip off) but it is certainly effectively done.
The cast are excellent and turn the hardboiled dialogue into convincing scenes. Keitel is wonderful. His character is a father figure of sorts and he is wildly out of control at times and balanced at others. Likewise Buscemi is wide-eyed and freaking out for much of the film, but he does it well. Roth is more balanced but is still good for it; it is his job to carry the emotional weight of the film and he does it well, despite a wandering American accent at times. Madsen is great, maybe not the best character but wildly out of control. Tierney was a great piece of casting, as was Bunker. Penn is good but not the best of the cast.
Tarantino mercifully has little acting to do, but it is his film as writer and director. The flashbacks during the film was a brave way to do it but it really works well - mixing stories with flashbacks and so on. No matter what the time of the scene, it all keeps moving tensely towards the climax. It may be a homage and not as original as some films but so what - it is tight and tense, macho, violent, funny and very enjoyable.
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