Quentin Tarantino - Still got it or lost it?

Discussion in 'Entertainment and Movie Talk' started by CB2001, Nov 17, 2011.

  1. CB2001

    CB2001 Master Member

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    I wanted to take a moment to talk about a film director we all know of in this day and age. I want to talk about Quentin Tarantino. Everyone here has their own points of view about Tarantino and his body of work, as I'm sure there is at least one or two Tarantino films that people love. For me, I find all of his work enjoyable, from Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction, to his half of the Grindhouse experience Death Proof and Inglourious Basterds. My dad is also a film watcher like me, but he feels that Tarantino lost his touch with being a good filmmaker with Kill Bill (he loves Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Jackie Brown). Right now, I'm watching Pulp Fiction as I'm writing this, which is why I'm asking the following question.

    So, my question to you all is this: Does Tarantino still got it as a filmmaker? Or has he completely lost his edge? If so or not, why do you feel that way? What film was it that made you feel that way?

    Please keep in mind, that I want to keep this discussion as open-minded as possible and respectful. If you don't agree with someone, don't be disrespectful to them. So, let the discussion begin.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2013
  2. Scareb

    Scareb Sr Member

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    I think he still has it. He's always put out a film that was different from most of the crap that comes out these days.

    Reservoir dogs is and always will be my favorite Tarantino flick.

    The thing about kill bill is that he was trying something different. He was taking his influence from Japanese cinema to make his own film. You can't fault him for wanting to try something new.

    He can keep making films and I will see each and every one of them.
     
  3. JD

    JD Master Member

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    I think Inglorious Basterds was the best flick he's done since Resevoir Dogs. But, I also think that just about everything he's done in between those two films has been subpar. Jackie Brown was decent, but I still don't understand the appeal of Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill.
     
  4. Jeyl

    Jeyl Master Member

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    Sure, he still works as a film maker. He just hasn't been a very good one as of late. But the one point that really irks me is his comments regarding film composers. It's just not cool to think that you're surrendering your film to a film composer when he uses other people's music work to fill in his films.
     
  5. dcarty

    dcarty Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Still got it.

    Tarantino's only about halfway through his career. Can you name a single director, with such a large oeuvre, that nailed it every single time? John Ford, Orson Welles, Hitchcock, Kurosawa, David Lean (arguably), Steven Spielberg, George Stevens, Scorsese, the list goes on all had movies that "weren't as good" as something else they're famous for and if you start your career with Reservoir Dogs and follow up with Pulp Fiction you've set an extremely high bar for yourself.

    Personally I loved Kill Bill and Inglourious Basterds though I know a lot of people didn't. Assuming he doesn't retire he's got another 25 years or more ahead of him and those could be some amazing movies.
     
  6. CB2001

    CB2001 Master Member

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    Well, I can say that what I like about them was primarily the characters. There's just something about the characters and the story. When it came to Pulp Fiction and the stories that were covered, the characters (no matter who they were) were very interesting enough to allow for you to hang in there with them for whatever they go through. For Kill Bill, again, it was the characters the drew me in. I can't tell you how many times I've read in other places about how interesting someone found the characters to be, particularly Bill with the charm he has (which is understandable about how he was able to draw the girls into his group).
     
  7. Feraud

    Feraud Sr Member

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    dcarty makes a great point about any director having ups and downs in their career. Many directors will never have the high points in their career like Tarantino.
    I don't like everything Tarantino has done but feel his intention is to make fun and thrilling films. I guy the guy a lot of credit for having passion in what currently feels like a remake happy, blockbuster oriented, lackluster industry.

    For what it's worth I'll give me Tarantino film experiences.

    Four Rooms segment - liked it, no complaints. It fit with the overall wackiness of the film.
    Reservoir Dogs - a damned perfect "heist gone wrong" film.
    Pulp Fiction- excellent
    Jackie Brown - very good.
    Kill Bill vol I & II - just o.k., I found it a bit long and indulgent. I could take it or leave it.
    Grindhouse/Death Proof - Awful. What a waste of Kurt Russell
    Inglorious Basterds - Loved it. Basterds is in the class of great WWII action films made when our dads were young.
     
  8. ONEYE

    ONEYE Sr Member

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    He never had it.
     
  9. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    I think Death Proof is a far better film than Planet Terror. I love it.
     
  10. xmr1

    xmr1 Well-Known Member

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    I think Death Proof was his eorst movie to date, I thought it was boring and dull. Inglorious Basterds was great tho. I recently read the script for Django Unchained and had a great time. If he does it well this can easily be one of his best!
     
  11. Laspector

    Laspector Sr Member

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    I guess I'm in the minority here. I've seen most of his movies and haven't enjoyed a single one of them.
     
  12. robstyle

    robstyle Sr Member

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    I hate Kill Bill, what a POS. He should have taken that point in time to do the Vega Brothers movie. Now its past possible considering the age and physical appearance of everyone involved. Like everything in pop culture, it has a high peak and then it fades off. He peaked in the 90's and sadly went off and did Kill Bill. Id like to have the old Tarantino back but dont think it will happen. Inglorious Basterds wasnt very good either to the point I could barely sit through it. What I did like about Death Proof is the fact they did the car stunts as opposed to doing CGI and all process trailer.
     
  13. CessnaDriver

    CessnaDriver Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Dogs, Pulp, and I know he didn't direct but True Romance.

    I saw Dogs first day and five minutes in I knew it would be great, dragged everyone I knew to see it.

    He had a small little 'verse going on there with these films somewhat connected.

    Then he flipped out later with weird unrealistic whacko stuff I wouldnt go near with a ten foot pole.

    Though I haven't seen Jackie Brown yet, should but I guess I had tuned out by the time that came out.


    I sit there and wonder.. WTF is wrong with this guy?

    Where the hell is a film about Jules wandering the earth????

    Of course now he would put ninja, * or vampires in it or some fool thing.
     
  14. Hecubus114

    Hecubus114 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Death Proof is great as long as Kurt Russell is on screen. The rest of the movie was just an edgier Sex and the City
     
  15. TheStig

    TheStig Active Member

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    Of the movies I've seen, I love his work and think he is getting better as time goes on. Inglourious Basterds is outstanding, one of the best WWII movies ever.
     
  16. sanityattack

    sanityattack Member

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    If Inglorious Bastards had been a 90 minute film, it would have been a classic. As it stands, it is massively over drawn and drags like hell. That said, Chistoph Waltz put in one of the best performances in any film that I have seen in the last few years.

     
  17. Apollo

    Apollo Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I think he peaked long ago but you never know.

    I HATED Kill Bill and "Basterds"
     
  18. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    The thing about Death Proof -- and he alludes to this in the film itself -- is that it's trying to recreate certain films from the 1970s, namely car-based chase films. Vanishing Point, Race with the Devil, Dirty Mary Crazy Larry, etc. All those films are similar to Death Proof in that they're very much a slow burn and don't REALLY get going or get action-packed until the last few minutes of the film.

    I actually enjoy that it takes a while to get going, and I appreciate how Kurt Russel's character comes across as this initially really likeable guy who turns out to be a f---ing psycho.


    That said, I can see where a lot of people would look at it and just find it boring, ESPECIALLY as it follows Planet Terror which is very action-packed and explosive.
     
  19. Jedifyfe

    Jedifyfe Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I like him. He definitely still has it. Not every director hits a homerun (Even Spielberg has had some bad films).

    He is different, inventive and stylized.
     
  20. darth_myeek

    darth_myeek Sr Member

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    He needs to make, and make, and make more films.
     
  21. jarvis

    jarvis Sr Member

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    I enjoyed almost all of his movies, Pulp Fiction being my favorite. The fact that he lifted Reservoir Dogs from City on Fire diminished my appreciation of it. I also wasn't thrilled with the second Kill Bill and that, followed by Death Proof, made me think he had totally lost it. Inglorious Basterds completely redeemed him in my eyes, and I'm looking forward to Django Unchained.
     
  22. Maelstrom

    Maelstrom Sr Member

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    QFT. Kurt made that film for me.
     
  23. MooCriket

    MooCriket Master Member

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    Dude. Are you serious?!

    Started great, but that ending...what a joke and cop out. I like his films for what they are...but * that ending in Bastards :confused Never go full ******, Quentin....never, ever.

    Wait a minute...****** is a no go now? Wow.
     
  24. Scareb

    Scareb Sr Member

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    Aaaaaand go me for posting in the wrong thread.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2011
  25. CTF

    CTF Sr Member

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    You'd be pushing it to call that a WWII movie, you know.

    It's a lot of fun, but it ain't about dubya dubya two.
     
  26. terryr

    terryr Sr Member

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    Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction are great. I don't like anything else. When he was an unknown he had talent.

    And he's a lousy actor.

    And he's not a tough guy.

    And his movies seem to hate women the more recent they get. Death Proof is an excuse to torture cheerleaders.
     
  27. Probe Droid

    Probe Droid Master Member

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    I liked Reservoir Dogs, but he's a one-hit wonder in my eyes. No interest in anything he's made since; Jackie Brown and the Kill Bills are crap. Inglorious Basterds, as someone noted, is a good 90-minute film with an hour of extra junk added. He's too self-indulgent. His scenes go on forever for the sake of his being so in love with his inane dialogue. To a large extent, he simply just copies moments from other people's films that he's liked and strings them together.

    And he's the worst actor imaginable. Steven Seagal is Olivier by comparison.
     
  28. Kerr Avon

    Kerr Avon Master Member

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    I don't really care for the guy, his movies, his acting, his writing, hell even his face, but I disagree with this. "Death Proof" was great that it started off as the typical exploitation flick about torturing women, and then turned around to have strong confident women torturing the torturer who then turned into a simpering *****.
     
  29. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    Yeah, let's not forget that Death Proof was part of a film called GRINDHOUSE, which itself was a play on many of the cliche awful 70s exploitation movies. Tarantino's entry in that took a convention of films from that larger genre and turned it on its head.


    That said, folks may not find it particularly entertaining, but that's a different issue. I've heard plenty of criticisms of Death Proof, especially how SLOW it is (and especially how slow in comparison to Planet Terror), but Death Proof, I think, does what it sets out to do pretty well (well, the secondary goal after "entertaining the viewer," that is -- that one's subjective).
     
  30. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner Community Staff

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    I would say if you think he ever "had it" then he still "has it" because in my opinion he hasn't really changed that much. I don't mind a dialogue heavy film but I don't find his dialogue nearly as clever or witty as he does. I think Reservoir Dogs was amazing because it was the first time we saw his style, but in my opinion, every movie since has more or less been the same movie and it wore off really quickly. I remember when Pulp Fiction came out and everyone was raving about it, and I just thought it was lame... still do and have pretty much thought the same of everything he has done since then. In answer to your initial question, as a director/writer, I don't think he has changed very much at all.
     
  31. jlee562

    jlee562 Sr Member

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    I'm in the never had it crowd.

    Tarantino is EXTREMELY derivative. Reservoir Dogs = City on Fire.
     
  32. cayman shen

    cayman shen Master Member

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    He's had a monstrous ego from the get-go, but now it's beginning to impact the quality of his work. He's becoming very, very self-indulgent. A lot of people accused him of this at the release of Kill Bill, but for me I really saw it with IB. I never saw Death Proof, but IB was the first of his films in a long time that I felt had very little emotional depth (Jackie Brown and Kill Bill are both very stirring, imo, but IB was the point where I felt style trumped substance altogether. Other than the opening homage to the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly which was powerful).
     
  33. Bizarro Lois

    Bizarro Lois Sr Member

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    I've enjoyed every one of his movies so far. I actually really liked Jackie Brown. I only recently watched Inglorious Basterds and thought there were a lot of great performances and visuals.
     
  34. terryr

    terryr Sr Member

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    Every director, and every actor, just repeats themselves.

    Lucas is still doing it the same way. In his Head. But it's how the world sees it that has changed.

    Hollywood changes people. It changes how they see the world. It's a millionaires club who get waited on by peasants constantly. They aren't part of the crowd that watches movies anymore.
     
  35. Weequay

    Weequay Well-Known Member

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    Its very interesting how different people view different films.

    I like QT's body of work. Kill bill is one of my favorite films, and IB was very well made.

    Deathproof however seemed to me a very lazy piece of work. It had the feel of 'me and my buddy are rich and famous so we're gonna make what ever we want'...

    Now thats fine and dandy, but do it right... dont make a grindhouse pic and shoot it on nice stock, then add in jumps and dirt. Do it properly and put your money where your mouth is. Shoot it on rough 35 or 16mm stock and do it how it would have been done back 'in the day'.

    Its also a terrible movie in general with some awful awful acting.

    So does he still have it? YES most definatley...when he is taking the project seriously.

    weequay
     
  36. CTF

    CTF Sr Member

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    Um, anyone who know anything 'bout film know that QT steals from the best. I mean, he's pretty blatant 'bout it, too.
     
  37. d_osborn

    d_osborn Sr Member

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    i always wondered why they didn't do exactly that with both films. shoot on old cheap stock with a small production kit, run the final cut through a scuzzy projector a few hundred times, strike four or five generations of cheap prints, damage the film, slice and dice a few scenes, rub in some dirt, etc. it seems they took the backwards way of going about it.

    that's not to say that i dislike qt, though. i loved inglorious basterds.
     
  38. CTF

    CTF Sr Member

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    You say it like it's a bad thing.
     
  39. micdavis

    micdavis Master Member

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    Like everything, the less new it is, the less "good" it seems.

    I still enjoy all his films, and hope he does more.

    At least they are out of the ordinary or fantastic tributes.
     
  40. CTF

    CTF Sr Member

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    "Exactamundo!"
     
  41. robstyle

    robstyle Sr Member

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    Its simple, those old camera systems would never hold up to the abuse of filming much less lenses, lighting.... Cameras these days can basically be operated by anyone that knows how to work a home video camera. They are small, reliable and have less moving mechanical parts. You have instant playback, real time viewing and can rough edit on the fly as well as color correct and all that fun stuff.
    For a great example of why not to do film with in camera "effects", look at Terminator Salvation. Everyone has super bright pearly whites due to the added chemicals in the film stock that was used to get the washed out look.
     
  42. HAL9000

    HAL9000 Sr Member

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    I think he is getting better with age. "Basterds" was an incredible piece of work.
     
  43. rundown

    rundown Sr Member

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    I actually thought it had great meaning the ending. The anger released that they never had been able to in real life. It's a revenge thing.

    Like most movie critics say. It's a movie making the *'s the jews with no power. and the jews the *'s

    [​IMG]

    i'd like you to try out these new age badboy's RED camera's. I got the pleasure of seeing it and trying it out. Even when you studied camera techniques, this won't be easy.
     
  44. astroboy

    astroboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I love kill bill. It holds two places in my top 15.

    That being said, I think that the screenplay to true romance is the most solid he's ever been
     
  45. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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  46. rodneyfaile

    rodneyfaile Sr Member

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    Tarantino is in my top 5 directors.

    Django Unchained is a great movie, but it is not his best. Many directors/writers will never even come close to Django Unchained, much less his greater works.

    Yes he still has it.
     
  47. CB2001

    CB2001 Master Member

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    Hell, I knew how to work a video camera and didn't know jack about how to use a professional digital film camera, let alone a professional 35mm camera. I had to learn that at film school. I'm sorry, Rob, but not everyone knows how to work a film camera, let alone how to load a film magazine and attach it to a film camera to be able to shoot on. Rundown is right, no one with the ability to just "work a video camera" can shoot on a professional camera, digital or film, without learning how to.
     
  48. rodneyfaile

    rodneyfaile Sr Member

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    I know how to throw a football, but I haven't won any Superbowls.
     
  49. CB2001

    CB2001 Master Member

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    That's the best analogy I've heard.
     

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