8.3/10
898,654
1,164 user 205 critic

Reservoir Dogs (1992)

Trailer
2:03 | Trailer
When a simple jewelry heist goes horribly wrong, the surviving criminals begin to suspect that one of them is a police informant.

Director:

Quentin Tarantino

Writers:

Quentin Tarantino, Quentin Tarantino (background radio dialogue written by) | 1 more credit »
Popularity
662 ( 65)
Top Rated Movies #88 | 12 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Harvey Keitel ... Mr. White / Larry
Tim Roth ... Mr. Orange / Freddy
Michael Madsen ... Mr. Blonde / Vic Vega
Chris Penn ... Nice Guy Eddie
Steve Buscemi ... Mr. Pink
Lawrence Tierney ... Joe Cabot
Randy Brooks ... Holdaway
Kirk Baltz ... Marvin Nash
Edward Bunker ... Mr. Blue (as Eddie Bunker)
Quentin Tarantino ... Mr. Brown
Rich Turner Rich Turner ... Sheriff #1
David Steen ... Sheriff #2
Tony Cosmo Tony Cosmo ... Sheriff #3
Stevo Polyi Stevo Polyi ... Sheriff #4 (as Stevo Poliy)
Michael Sottile Michael Sottile ... Teddy
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Storyline

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 Soumitra

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Every dog has his day. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Of his decision to not show the heist itself, Quentin Tarantino has said that the reason was initially budgetary, but that he had always liked the idea of not showing it, and stuck with that idea in order to make the details of the heist ambiguous. He has said that the technique allows for the realization that the film is "about other things"; a similar plot outline that appears in the stage play Glengarry Glen Ross, and its film adaptation, in which the mentioned robbery is never shown on camera. Tarantino has compared this to the work of a novelist, and has said that he wanted the film to be about something that is not seen, and that he wanted it to "play with a real-time clock as opposed to a movie clock ticking." See more »

Goofs

During the getaway scene, Mr. White unloads his dual 9mm's into the police car. Before the camera cuts to the inside of the car showing the two officers being shot multiple times, we see the bullets strike the front windshield from the outside, revealing two dummy mannequins sitting in the front seats. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mr. Brown: 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.
Mr. Blonde: 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...
Mr. Brown: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa... Time out Greenbay. Tell that fucking bullshit to the tourists.
Joe: Toby... Who the fuck is Toby? Toby...
Mr. Brown: 'Like a Virgin' is not about this sensitive girl who meets a nice fella....
[...]
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits leave out Writing and Directing credits. They are then shown first during the end credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

The ear slicing scene was cut in the Finnish VHS release See more »

Connections

Referenced in NileCity 105.6 (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Magic Carpet Ride
Performed by Bedlam
Written by Rushton Moreve and John Kay
Published by Duchess Music Corporation and Kings Road Music
Rights Administered by MCA Music Publishing
A Division of MCA Music Inc.
Courtesy of MCA Records
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User Reviews

Simply brilliant; short, tight and taut
28 January 2004 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

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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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 September 1992 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Reservoir Dogs See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$147,839, 25 October 1992

Gross USA:

$2,832,029

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,889,963
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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