Even though visionary writer-director Quentin Tarantino is arguably at the height of his career right now, with his latest movie, the Western-set-in-the-Deep South Django Unchained, both a commercial success — at $138 million and counting it is his highest-grossing North American release — and a critical favorite — it's nominated for five Academy Awards (on top of the Golden Globe it earned him for Best Screenplay - Motion Picture) — he is no less a controversial and divisive filmmaker today than when his first movie debuted back in 1992. Fellow filmmaker and frequent Tarantino critic Spike Lee is one of the most vocal opponents of his latest movie, saying Django Unchained is "disrespectful" of the history of slavery (though he admitted that he hasn't seen the movie and has no intention of seeing it). Other important figures in the black community have come out in support of the movie, however, such as Rev. Jesse Jackson, who applauded Django Unchained, saying that it captured "the cultural, physical and psychological pain" of slavery.
If you're one of the many for whom Django Unchained was an introduction to the violent, cool, hyper-realistic world of Quentin Tarantino cinema and now you are wondering what you've been missing all of these years (or, conversely, you hated it and want some more fuel to heap on the Tarantino fire), we've put together a list of movies that can help you become more knowledgeable of the style and language of his movies. We're not promising that you're going to love all of the movies on the list or get all of his cultural and cinematic references, but, in less than eight hours' time, you will be able to hold your own the next time Tarantino's name pops up in conversation. Let's do it! Both barrels blazing! >> Posted 01.22.13 by BrentJS
"Revenge is never a straight line. It’s a forest. And like a forest it’s easy to lose your way… To get lost… To forget where you came in."
Enter a vast cinematic world that feels very much like our own, but hyperrealistic — groovy, violent, romantic, frightening and filled with characters so interesting that even the most dastardly of them can be relatable, even likeable. The only rule in this world is that revenge can and will be served, be it at the end of a legendary samurai's sword or in a hail of double-barreled justice. Oooh, that’s a bingo! >> Posted 11.20.12 by BrentJS
"When you dance with the devil, you wait for the song to stop."
Audiences have been flocking to theaters to watch gangster movies since before the introduction of "talkies," enticed by the opportunity to be a tourist in the violent world of career criminals without any of the risk associated with the reality of the lifestyle. The genre has been dominated by the stories of desperate Italian immigrants struggling to make it in America and Italian-American mafiosos who temper their ruthlessnes with strict codes of conduct, such as in The Godfather, considered the second greatest film in American cinema by the American Film Institute.
But, the "face" of gangster movies has become less defined in the past two decades as America has become more diverse and moviegoers more accepting of foreign imports. Modern masters like Martin Scorsese and Brian De Palma continue to elevate the genre by perfecting it, while innovative filmmakers like Quentin Tarantino, Guy Ritchie and Takashi Miike have helped to broaden the genre by refusing to be slaves to gangster movie tropes. Hide your stash, check your clip, and help us choose the latest, greatest gangster movies.
Top 10 Best Gangster Movies of the Past 20 Years >>
Posted 11.08.12 by BrentJS
Given the state of the economy, we're due for a good heist movie — after all, who would you rather see getting away with ill-gotten gains: an oversized, corrupt financial institution or a skilled set of charismatic bandits? We know who we'd root for, any day. This week a high-living team of criminals known for their precision bank robberies takes to the screen, trying to pull off that infamous "one last job" that's always ripe for cinematic doom. If that combination of style and ill-fated heist appeals, we recommend checking out (or rewatching) Quentin Tarantino's first movie.
more about Takers >> Posted 08.24.10 by reelz
For cinephiles (pronounced “movie nerds”), the works of Quentin Tarantino aren’t just fun on their own terms: They’re packed with nods, winks, and say-no-mores to other movies, genre clichés, and Tarantino’s own conventions. His characters are no exception, though some of them may pop us for saying so.
When Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds rides a pile of Nazi corpses into a theater near you, it’s a pretty safe bet that some of the writer-director’s favorite stock characters will be along for the genoride. And yes, many of them will be movie buffs. Here are the ones to watch for with your one good eye through a hail of bullets, sleet of blood, and freezing rain of gore.
Check out the Top 10 Tarantino Character Types. Posted 08.14.09 by reelz
It's hard to imagine Mr. Black from Quentin Tarantino's violent masterpiece Reservoir Dogs being humbled by the opportunity to voice a character in DC Comics' latest animated feature, Green Lantern: First Flight, but that's exactly the way actor Michael Madsen feels, according to a recent interview.When asked why he wanted to voice Kilowog, an alien member of the Green Lantern Corps and the primary trainer of new Corps recruits, Madsen said:
I liked the idea that Kilowog was forceful, yet has a gentle nature. I'm often thought of as playing villainous characters in movies. Everyone forgets that I was the father in Free Willy -- they only like to remember that I cut off a policeman's ear in Reservoir Dogs. There's me in the middle somewhere and I think that's kind of like Kilowog, He's dangerous, yet he has a heart. That's what attracted me to the part.
Also, I was quite humbled by being asked to play Kilowog in the first place. I don't often get asked to voice animated characters, and I've always wanted to do something like that -- it's great fun for me.
Because of Madsen's work in such genre pictures as Sin City, Species, and Kill Bill, he has developed a loyal fan base and sometimes makes appearances at comic book conventions. When asked if there is a particular comic book character that he would ever want to play, Madsen said:
I've always thought I'd make a great Batman. Batman needs to have a light side and a dark side. I think I'd bring a duality.
Animation visionary Bruce Timm produced Green Lantern: First Flight and it is the fifth direct-to-video DC Universe Original Animated Movie released by Warner Premiere and Warner Bros. Animation. Posted 06.09.09 by BrentJS