8. Jackie Brown (1997)
Jackie Brown was Tarantino’s first feature as a writer and director since Pulp Fiction three years prior. Known and loved for its action, laughs, smart dialogue and strong performances, Jackie Brown is exceptionally unpredictable yet truly in-keeping with the thematic exploration of historical cinema Tarantino is known for. Starring yet another Tarantino patron, Samuel L. Jackson, as well as childhood Tarantino favourite Pam Grier as the titular Jackie Brown, this film acknowledges Tarantino’s debt to the novel “Rum Punch” by Elmore Leonard and the crude vitality of blaxploitation; the sub-genre of film Pam Grier was so famous for starring in during the 1970s.
A vital entry into the Tarantino catalogue, Jackie Brown sits so low as number 8 more because of the extraordinary quality of the entries to come than because of any lack of quality in of itself.
7. The Hateful Eight (2015)
The Hateful Eight is hailed as “an American epic” by many, yet is mostly set in one intimate room. Making the space of this house-bound movie feel as equally gigantic as the best Westerns, including that of his own Western Django Unchained.
The Hateful Eight is horribly violent (as can be expected), intelligent, discursive and powerful. It is a celebration of Tarantino’s signature ludic style, with his unashamedly extended dialogue scenes making his actors come vividly to life – especially Samuel L. Jackson. The film takes similar tropes from Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs, and thrills watchers throughout.
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6. Kill Bill Vol. 2 (2004)
At number six we place Volume 2 of Kill Bill, where Uma Thurman’s The Bride continues her quest for revenge by hunting down those who wronged her.
Vol. 2 succeeds in offering more exciting fight scenes as The Bride exhibits her martial arts skills, and the film offers a satisfying and cathartic – pun intended – ending, making this some of Tarantino’s most beloved work.
While originally intended to be released in conjunction with Vol. 1 as a 4 hour plus martial arts revenge epic, Volume 2 as a standalone didn’t quite feature the same wow factor as the iconic first installment despite its obvious technical and creative triumphs.