A film God is born...
27th March, 1963. A historical day for movie-lovers all over the world. Why is this such an important date?The answer is simple. On this date, a little boy was born in the town Knoxville, which is located in Tennessee. What no one knew at this time, was that the little boy would grow up to be one of the most inspiring and successful persons in the worlds leading film industry. They named the boy Quentin Jerome Tarantino, but he is known to the world only as Quentin Tarantino.
As a boy, he was interested in a lot of things, including film and martial arts. When he was in junior high school, he used to skip many schooldays in order to see Asian kung-fu movies. These two passions would soon blend together and become the fundament of his enormous success……
His major breakthrough came in 1991 when he entered the Sundance film festival, presenting his very first movie; “Reservoir Dogs”. He had both written and directed the movie himself, despite the fact that he was a first timer within the movie industry.
The film garnered critical acclaim and the director became a legend in the England, UK and the cult film circuit. Three years after the gigantic success with Reservoir Dogs, he followed it up by making a new movie called “Pulp Fiction”. Anyone who is fairly interested in film would know this movie very well. The film is also considered to be a true classic. Actually, it is rated the 17th best movie ever made.
Pulp Fiction had its Premiere at the Cannes film festival, where it won the main prize; “Palme D’Or’”. This prize was the virtual equal of the “Best Picture” prize at the Academy Awards; a prize filled of prestige and glory.
At the ’93 Academy Awards, it was nominated for the Best Picture Oscar, in addition Best Director and Best Original Screenplay, among others. They only won the award for Best Original Screenplay.
In 1995, Quentin directed was involved in the direction of Four Rooms, a middle famous Anthology. He only directed one fourth of the movie, since it consists of four different novels. Even though the movie did not get very good reviews, Tarantino’s part is considered to be the best one. The directors of the other three parts were Alexandre Rockwell, Allison Anders and Robert Rodriguez. The film hit the theaters on December 25th, 1995.
From Dusk Till Dawn
The next project Quentin was involved in, was a movie named “From Dusk Till Dawn”. It is a vampire/crime based story, which Tarantino wrote himself. Not only did he do that, he co-starred for the main role together with George Clooney. The movie did fairly well theatrically.
Later there has been made two sequels to this movie. “From Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money”, and “From Dusk Till Dawn 3: The Hangman’s Daughter”. Both of these movies have been totally butchered in all reviews, reports and commentaries. I believe it has received nothing but bad criticism. But fortunately for Quentin, he was not the one producing, directing or even starring in these movies. That would really have destroyed much in his so far impressive career within the movie business.
Almost every person within the music, film and literature industries has their own trademarks; things so that you can recognize their work etc. Mr. Quentin Tarantino is no exception. Actually, he has quite a lot of recognizable things in his movies, and here are some of them.
In his movies, the main character is always driving cars from Chevrolet or Cadillac. He also uses lots of effects; he is for example know to frame characters with doorways, and seeing people opening and closing doors, is very common. Much of the violence and minor character dialogue appears to be off-screen very often in his movies.
Suitcases: He probably has some kind of weird relationship with suitcases, because they seem to be the main point in most of his movies…
He often makes references to cult movies and television. Another special thing, which probably is not only a coincidence, is the fact that he frequently works with the man Harvey Keitel. He has the main role in a couple of Tarantino’s movies, and they also work a lot together on the set. They appear to be good friends.
In the original scripts of his movies, the main character usually dies. He re-uses many names in different movies, for example “Vincent”, “Dimmick” and “Marvin”.
He usually has a shot from inside a car trunk, looking up at whomever it is opening it. Some other things is that he frequently casts Tim Roth, and for some twisted reason there seems to always be a Dutch element in his films. This part is interesting: He ALWAYS uses “The Mexican Standoff”. This means that there is always a scene where three or more characters are pointing guns at each other.
Often uses an unconventional storytelling device in his films, such as retrospect (Reservoir Dogs), non-linear (Pulp Fiction), or "chapter" format (Kill Bill).
His films will often include one long, unbroken take where a character is followed around somewhere.
Often casts comedians in small roles: Stephen Wright as the DJ in Reservoir Dogs, Kathy Griffin as an accident witness and Julia Sweeney as the junkyard guy's daughter in Pulp Fiction, Chris Tucker as Beaumont in Jackie Brown. Long close-up of a person's face while someone else speaks off-screen.
Aliases. Tarantino uses aliases in nearly all of his movies: Honey Bunny and Pumpkin from Pulp Fiction, Mr White, Blonde, Orange etc. from Reservoir Dogs. Bill's team in Kill Bill (Black Mamba, Copperhead, Cottonmouth, and California Mountain Snake).
So the next time you see a movie and wonder if it’s a Tarantino masterpiece, just look for these signs and you’ll find out pretty quick.
As I said before, every single one of Tarantino’s movies are packed full of violence and brutal actions. This is only my own speculations, but I think he tries to learn from the martial arts scenes in his movies. One thing which definitely is more than a speculation, is the fact that he has used violence numerous times before. In November 1997, he was sued by a man named Don Murphy. Murphy craved 5.000.000 $ after Tarantino slammed his face into a restaurant wall and punched him repeatedly. Quentin became accused of assault, but he was never convicted. Besides this, he has used minor violence a lot of times throughout the history, but nothing so serious that it is worth mentioning.
Quentin Tarantino has not only made a fortune from directing, producing, acting and writing manuscripts (things that has to do with film), but has also had a remarkable success within the music industry. Together with his good friend Lawrence Bender, he founded a record company called “A Band Apart Records”. They especially focused on movie soundtracks and without this company, movie soundtracks would probably be heard only in the theatres and not on CD’s. Maverick Records distributed the movie soundtracks. This company is owned by the famous singer/actor named Madonna. She is probably best known from the successful movie release; “Evita”.
Trivia (quoted from IMDB.com)
He was planning to direct an episode of The X-Files in November 1996, but refused to join the Director's guild of America. The guild refused his request for a waiver so that he could direct the show.
Claims that Tarantino acted in the film Dawn of the Dead (1978) or the film King Lear (1987) are incorrect. Quentin falsely listed these credits years ago on his acting resume to compensate for his lack of experience and these incorrect credits have subsequently been attributed to him in such places as Leonard Maltin's Movie and Video Guide and the Cinemania CD ROM.
His first noted screenplay was titled "Captain Peachfuzz and the Anchovy Bandit" which was written in 1985
Tarantino claims that James Best taught him how to act.
In all of his original screenplays the name of a police detective named Scagnetti is referred to at least once. Most of the times the particular scene was cut out of the final versions.
Director Spike Lee criticized Tarantino for the excessive use of racial slurs in his film Jackie Brown (1997). Quentin said Spike was just mad because "nobody goes to see Spike's films anymore". When Quentin said this in 1998, Spike's movie He Got Game (1998) was currently number one at the box office in the USA.
He’s widely reported to have helped to write Tony Scott's Crimson Tide (1995).
He is a big 'Three Stooges' fan.
His father Tony Tarantino (actor and musician) is of Italian descent and his mother Connie McHugh is half-Irish and half-Cherokee Indian.
Although he uses both elements in his films, QT strongly detests violence and drugs.
He is listed in the acknowledgments of actor Ethan Hawke's novel, Ash Wednesday.
Last week he was the head judge at the 2004 Cannes Film festival, where his own movie; Pulp Fiction (1994) won the Palme D'or, the top honor.
In just about all his movies you'll spot "Red Apple" cigarettes.
Considers Ride in the Whirlwind (1965) one of the finest Westerns ever made, even writing an extensive article about it in Sight And Sound Magazine, titled 'A Rare Sorrow'. The article is featured in the Pulp Fiction (1994) Special Edition DVD as an extra and also appears in Paul A. Woods' Film Geek Files (pgs. 129-132). Interestingly, the director of Ride in the Whirlwind, Monte Hellman, was the executive producer of Reservoir Dogs (1992).
Has an IQ measured at 160, despite dropping out of high school.
He is a good friend of Robert Rodriquez.
He has called Uma Thurman his 'muse'.
He has been named after the 'Burt Reynolds' character Quint Asper from "Gunsmoke" (1955). Most of his friends often call him QT, and in some movies he is only credited as “Q”.