Reservoir Dogs

Quentin Tarantino came out of nowhere (i.e., a video store in Manhattan Beach, California) and turned Hollywood on its ear in 1992 with his explosive first feature, Reservoir Dogs. Like Tarantino's mainstream breakthrough Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs has an unconventional structure, cleverly shuffling back and forth in time to reveal details about the characters, experienced criminals who know next to nothing about each other. Joe (Lawrence Tierney) has assembled them to pull off a simple heist, and has gruffly assigned them color-coded aliases (Mr. Orange, Mr. Pink, Mr. White) to conceal their identities from being known even to each other. But something has gone wrong, and the plan has blown up in their faces. One by one, the surviving robbers find their way back to their prearranged warehouse hideout. There, they try to piece together the chronology of this bloody fiasco--and to identify the traitor among them who tipped off the police. Pressure mounts, blood flows, accusations and bullets fly. In the combustible atmosphere these men are forced to confront life-and-death questions of trust, loyalty, professionalism, deception, and betrayal. As many critics have observed, it is a movie about "honor among thieves" (just as Pulp Fiction is about redemption, and Jackie Brown is about survival). Along with everything else, the movie provides a showcase for a terrific ensemble of actors: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Steve Buscemi, Michael Madsen, Christopher Penn, and Tarantino himself, offering a fervent dissection of Madonna's "Like a Virgin" over breakfast. Reservoir Dogs is violent (though the violence is implied rather than explicit), clever, gabby, harrowing, funny, suspenseful, and even--in the end--unexpectedly moving. (Don't forget that "Super Sounds of the Seventies" soundtrack, either.) Reservoir Dogs deserves just as much acclaim and attention as its follow-up, Pulp Fiction, would receive two years later. --Jim Emerson

Genre: Crime, Drama
Director(s): Quentin Tarantino
Production: Miramax Films
  12 wins & 22 nominations.
 
IMDB:
8.3
Metacritic:
79
Rotten Tomatoes:
91%
R (Restricted)
Year:
1992
99
5,015 Views

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 fuckin' bullshit to the tourists.

Joe Cabot:
[looking at his address book] Toby... Who the fuck is Toby?

Mr. Brown:
Like a Virgin is not about some sensitive girl who meets a nice fella. That's what True Blue is about. Granted, no argument about that.

Mr. Orange:
Which one is True Blue?

Nice Guy Eddie:
You ain't heard True Blue? It was a big ass hit for Madonna. I don't even follow this Tops of the Pops shit, and even I've heard of True Blue.

Mr. Orange:
Look, asshole, I didn't say I ain't heard of it. All I asked was how does it go? Excuse me for not being the world's biggest Madonna fan.

Mr. Blonde:
Personally, I can do without her.

Mr. Blue:
I used to like her early stuff. Borderline - but once she got off with that Papa Don't Preach phase, I tuned out.

Mr. Brown:
You guys are, like, making me lose my... train of thought here. I was saying something, what was it?

Joe Cabot:
Oh, Toby's that little Chinese girl. What was her last name?

Mr. White:
What's that?

Joe Cabot:
It's an old address book I found in a coat I haven't worn in a coon's age. What was that name?

Mr. Brown:
What the fuck was I talking about?

Mr. Pink:
You said 'True Blue' was about a guy... er.... a sensitive girl who meets a nice guy, but 'Like a Virgin' was a metaphor for big dicks.

Mr. Brown:
O.K., let me tell you what Like a Virgin's about. It's all about this cooze who's a regular fuck machine, I'm talking morning, day, night, afternoon: dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick.

Mr. Blue:
How many dicks is that?

Mr. White:
A lot.

Mr. Brown:
Then one day she meets this John Holmes motherfucker and it's like, whoa baby, I mean this cat is like Charles Bronson in The Great Escape; he's digging tunnels. Now, she's gettin' the serious dick action and she's feeling something she ain't felt since forever. Pain. Pain.

Joe Cabot:
Chu? Toby Chu?

Mr. Brown:
It hurts. It hurts her. It shouldn't hurt her, you know her pussy should be Bubble Yum by now, but when this cat fucks her it hurts. It hurts, just like it did the first time. You see the pain is reminding the fuck machine what it once was like to be a virgin. Hence, "Like a Virgin."

Nice Guy Eddie:
C'mon, throw in a buck!

Mr. Pink:
Uh-uh, I don't tip.

Nice Guy Eddie:
You don't tip?

Mr. Pink:
I don't believe in it.

Nice Guy Eddie:
You don't believe in tipping?

Mr. Blue:
You know what these chicks make? They make shit.

Mr. Pink:
Don't give me that. She don't make enough money, she can quit.

Nice Guy Eddie:
I don't even know a fucking Jew who'd have the balls to say that. Let me just get this straight: you don't ever tip, huh?

Mr. Pink:
I don't tip because society says I have to. Alright, I mean I'll tip if somebody really deserves a tip. If they really put forth the effort, I'll give them something extra. But I mean, this tipping automatically, it's for the birds. I mean, as far as I'm concerned, they're just doing their job.

Mr. Blue:
Hey, this girl was nice.

Mr. Pink:
She was OK. But she wasn't anything special.

Mr. Blue:
What's special? Take you in the back and suck your dick?

[They all laugh]

Nice Guy Eddie:
I'd go over twelve percent for that.

Mr. Pink:
Look, I ordered coffee, alright? And we been here a long fucking time, and she's only filled my cup three times. I mean, when I order coffee, I want it filled six times.

Mr. Blonde:
Six times? Well, what if she's too fucking busy?

Mr. Pink:
The words "too fucking busy" shouldn't be in a waitress' vocabulary.

Nice Guy Eddie:
Excuse me Mr. Pink, but the last fucking thing you need's another cup of coffee.

Mr. Pink:
Jesus Christ. I mean, these ladies aren't starving to death. They make minimum wage. You know, I used to work minimum wage, and when I did, I wasn't lucky enough to have a job that society deemed tipworthy.

Mr. Blue:
You don't care if they're counting on your tips to live?

Mr. Pink:
[rubbing his middle finger and thumb together] You know what this is? It's the world's smallest violin playing just for the waitresses.

Mr. White:
You don't have any idea what you're talking about. These people bust their ass. This is a hard job.

Mr. Pink:
So is working at McDonald's, but you don't feel the need to tip them, do ya? Well why not? They're serving you food. But no, society says don't tip these guys over here, but tip these guys over here. That's bullshit!

Mr. White:
Waitressing is the number one occupation for female non-college graduates in this country. It's the one job basically any woman can get and make a living on. The reason is because of their tips.

Mr. Pink:
Fuck all that.

Mr. Brown:
[laughing] Jesus Christ.

Mr. Pink:
I mean, I'm very sorry the government taxes their tips, that's fucked up. That ain't my fault. It would appear to me that waitresses are one of the many groups the government fucks in the ass on a regular basis. I mean, if you show me a piece of paper that says the government shouldn't do that, I'll sign it. Put it to a vote, I'll vote for it. But what I won't do is play ball. And this non-college bullshit you're givin' me, I got two words for that: learn to fuckin' type, 'cause if you're expecting me to help out with the rent, you're in for a big fuckin' surprise.

Mr. Orange:
He's convinced me. Gimme my dollar back!

Mr. White:
You better start talkin', asshole! Cause we got shit we need to talk about. We're already freaked out, we need you actin' freaky like we need a fuckin' bag on our hip.

Mr. Blonde:
[calmly] OK, let's talk.

Mr. White:
We think we got a rat in the house.

Mr. Pink:
I guarantee we got a rat in the house!

Mr. Blonde:
What makes you say that?

Mr. White:
Is that supposed to be funny?

Mr. Pink:
Look, we think this place ain't safe.

Mr. White:
This place just ain't secure anymore. We're leaving, you should go with us.

Mr. Blonde:
Nobody's going anywhere.

Mr. White:
[about Mr. Blonde] Piss on this fucking turd! [To Mr. Pink] We're outta here.

Mr. Blonde:
Don't take another step, Mr. White.

Mr. White:
[screams] Fuck you, maniac! It's your fuckin' fault we're in this trouble!

Mr. Blonde:
[calmly to Mr. Pink] What's this guy's problem?

Mr. White:
What's my problem? Yeah, I gotta fuckin' problem! I gotta big fuckin' problem with any trigger-happy madman who almost gets me shot!

Mr. Blonde:
What the fuck are you talking about?

Mr. White:
That fucking shooting spree in the store, remember?!

Mr. Blonde:
[shrugs] Fuck 'em. They set off the alarm. They deserve what they got.

Mr. White:
You almost killed me! ASSHOLE! If I had known what kind of guy you were, I never would've agreed to work with you.

Mr. Blonde:
Are you gonna bark all day, little doggie, or are you gonna bite?

Mr. White:
What was that? I'm sorry, I didn't catch it. Would you repeat it?

Mr. Blonde:
Are you gonna bark all day, little doggie, or are you gonna bite? [throws away his drink]

Mr. Pink:
Oh, Christ, hey, look, you two assholes, calm the fuck down! Hey, come on, are we on a playground here, huh?! [pause] Am I the only professional?! You fuckin' guys are acting like a bunch of fuckin' niggers! You work with niggers, huh? Just like you two, always sayin' they're gonna kill each other.

Mr. White:
[to Mr. Pink] You said yourself you thought about taking him out!

Mr. Blonde:
[menacing] You fuckin' said that?

Mr. Pink:
Yeah, I did, OK? I did. But that was then. Right now, this guy is the only one I completely trust. He's too fuckin' homicidal to be workin' with the cops.

Mr. White:
You takin' his side?

Mr. Pink:
NO! Fuck sides, man! What we need here is a little solidarity! Somebody's stickin' a red hot poker up our asses, and I wanna know whose name's on the handle! Now I know I'm no piece of shit... [referring to Mr. White] And I'm pretty sure you're OK... [referring to Mr. Blonde] And I'm fuckin' positive you're on the level. So let's try and figure out who the bad guy is, alright?

Mr. Blonde:
[calming down, chuckling] Wow, that was really exciting. I bet you're a big Lee Marvin fan, aren't ya? Me too, I love that guy. My heart's beatin' so fast, I'm about to have a heart attack here.

Mr. Orange:
This is a very weird situation. 'Cause I don't know if you remember back in '86 there was a major fucking drought. Nobody had anything. People were living on resin... smoking the wood in their pipes for months. This chick had a bunch. And she's begging me to sell it. So I told her I wasn't going to be Joe the potman anymore, but I would take a little bit and sell it to my close, close, close friends. She agreed to that, said we'd keep the same arrangement as before; 10%, free pot for me, as long as I helped her out that weekend. She had a brick of weed she was selling, she didn't want to go to the buy alone. Her brother usually goes with her, but he's in county unexpectedly.

Mr. White:
What for?

Mr. Orange:
His traffic tickets. Got a warrant. They stopped him for something, found warrants on him, took him to county. Now she doesn't walk around alone with all that weed. I don't want to do this. I have a very bad feeling about it. But she keeps asking me, keeps asking me, keeps asking me, finally I said OK 'cause I'm sick of hearing it. Now, we're picking the guy up at the train station...

Nice Guy Eddie:
Wait a minute. You go to the train station to pick up the buyer with the weed on you?

Mr. Orange:
The guy needed it right away. Don't ask me why. Anyway, we're get to the station and we're waiting for the guy. I'm carrying the weed in one of those little carry-on bags. I got to take a piss. So I tell the connection I'll be right back, I'm going to the boys' room. So I walk in the mens' room, and who's standing there? Four Los Angeles county sheriffs and a German shepherd.

Nice Guy Eddie:
They're waiting for you?

Mr. Orange:
No, they're just a bunch of cops hanging out in the men's room, talking. When I walked through the door, they all stopped what they were talking about and they looked at me.

Mr. White:
[laughs] That's hard, man. That's a fucking hard situation.

Mr. Orange:
German shepherd starts barking. He's barking at me. I mean, it's obvious. He's barking at me. Every nerve-ending, all my senses, blood in my veins, everything I have is screaming, "Take off, man! Just bail, just get the fuck out of there!" Panic hits me like a bucket of water. First there's the shock of it--BAM, right in the face. I'm standing there drenched in panic. All these sheriffs looking at me, and they know, man. They can smell it. Sure as that fucking dog can, they can smell it on me.

Joe:
So, you guys like to tell jokes, huh? Gigglin' and laughin' like a bunch of young broads sittin' in a schoolyard. Well, let me tell a joke. Five guys, sittin' in a bullpen, in San Quentin. All wondering how the fuck they got there. What should we have done, what didn't we do, who's fault is it, is it my fault, your fault, his fault, all that bullshit. Then one of them says, hey. Wait a minute. When we were planning this caper, all we did was sit around tellin' fuckin' jokes! Get the message? Boys, I don't mean to holler at ya. When this caper's over - and I'm sure it'll be a successful one - we'll get down to the Hawaiian Islands, hell, I'll roll and laugh with all of ya. You'll find me a different character down there. Right now, it's a matter of business. With the exception of Eddie and myself, whom you already know, we're going to be using aliases on this job. Under no circumstances do I want any one of you to relate to each other by your Christian names, and I don't want any talk about yourself personally. That includes where you been, your wife's name, where you might've done time, or maybe a bank you robbed in St. Petersburg. All I want you guys to talk about, if you have to, is what you're going to do. That should do it. Here are your names... [pointing to each respective member] Mr. Brown, Mr. White, Mr. Blonde, Mr. Blue, Mr. Orange, and Mr. Pink.

Mr. Pink:
Why am I Mr. Pink?

Joe:
Because, you're a faggot, alright?!

[Mr. Brown laughs]

Mr. Pink:
Why can't we pick our own colors?

Joe:
No way, no way. Tried it once, doesn't work. You got four guys all fighting over who's gonna be Mr. Black, but they don't know each other, so nobody wants to back down. No way. I pick. You're Mr. Pink. Be thankful you're not Mr. Yellow.

Mr. Brown:
Yeah, but Mr. Brown? That's a little too close to Mr. Shit.

Mr. Pink:
Mr. Pink sounds like Mr. Pussy. How 'bout if I'm Mr. Purple? That sounds good to me. I'll be Mr. Purple.

Joe:
You're not Mr. Purple. Some guy on some other job is Mr. Purple. You're Mr. PINK.

Mr. White:
Who cares what your name is?

Mr. Pink:
Yeah, that's easy for your to say, you're Mr. White. You have a cool-sounding name. Alright look, if it's no big deal to be Mr. Pink, you wanna trade?

Joe:
Hey! NOBODY'S trading with ANYBODY. This ain't a goddamn, fucking city council meeting, you know. Now listen up, Mr. Pink. There's two ways you can go on this job: my way or the highway. Now what's it gonna be, Mr. Pink?

Mr. Pink:
Jesus Christ, Joe, fucking forget about it. It's beneath me. I'm Mr. Pink. Let's move on.

Joe:
I'll move on when I feel like it... All you guys got the goddamn message?... I'm so Goddamn mad, hollering at you guys, I can hardly talk. Pssh. Let's go to work.

Joe Cabot:
This man set us up.

Nice Guy Eddie:
Dad, I'm sorry, but I don't know what the Hell's happening.

Joe Cabot:
That's all right, Eddie. I do.

Mr. White:
What the fuck are you talking about?

Joe Cabot:
That lump of shit's working with the LAPD.

Mr. Orange:
Joe, I don't have the slightest fucking idea what you're talking about.

Mr. White:
Joe, Joe, I don't know what you think you know, but you're wrong.

Joe Cabot:
Like Hell I am.

Mr. White:
Joe, trust me on this, you're making a mistake. He's a good kid. I understand you're hot, you're super fucking pissed. We're all real emotional. But you're barking up the wrong tree. I know this man; he wouldn't do that.

Joe Cabot:
You don't know jack shit. I do: The cocksucker tipped off the cops and got Mr. Brown and Mr. Blue killed.

Mr. Pink:
Mr. Blue is dead?

Joe Cabot:
Dead as Dillinger.

Mr. White:
How do you know all this?

Joe Cabot:
He was the only one I wasn't a hundred percent on. I should have my fucking head examined going ahead when I wasn't a hundred percent.

Mr. White:
That's your proof?!

Joe Cabot:
You don't need proof when you have instinct. I ignored it before, but no more. [Draws a gun and aims at Orange]

[Mr. White draws a gun and aims at Joe. And Eddie draws a gun and aims at White.]

Nice Guy Eddie:
Have you lost your fucking mind?

Mr. White:
Joe, you're making a terrible mistake. I'm not gonna let you make it.

Mr. Pink:
[Slowly backing away] Come on, guys. Nobody wants this. We're supposed to be fucking professionals!

Nice Guy Eddie:
Larry, look...It's been quite a long time, a lot of jobs. There's no need for this, man. Let's just put our guns down, and let's settle this with a fucking conversation.

Mr. White:
Joe, if you kill that man, you die next. Repeat: If you kill that man, you die next.

Nice Guy Eddie:
Larry, we have been friends, and you respect my dad, and I respect you. But I will put fucking bullets right through your heart if you don't put that fucking gun down now.

Mr. White:
Goddamn you, Joe. Don't make me do this.

Nice Guy Eddie:
LARRY STOP POINTING THAT FUCKING GUN AT MY DAD!

[White, Eddie, and Joe all shoot simultaneously.]

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