"Someone's trying to stick a red-hot poker up our ass, and I'm trying to see whose name's on the handle!"
- Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi) to fellow set-up thieves Mr. White (Harvey Keitel) and Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen)
Rolling Stone - 10/29/1992
"...A savagely comic burst of mayhem....Quentin Tarantino is a genuine find..."
Sight and Sound - 01/01/1993
"...An astute mix of wit and cynicism....This is a film of considerable acuity and power..."
New York Times - 10/30/1992
"...Sometimes dazzling cinematic pyrotechnics and over-the-top dramatic energy....RESERVOIR DOGS features a cast of splendid actors, all of whom contribute equally to the final effect..."
Los Angeles Times - 10/30/1992
"...An audacious high-wire act....[Tarantino] has a gift for writing great bursts of caustic, quirky dialogue..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 10/30/1992
"...Tarantino has a confident, kinetic way of shooting action....[Madsen] here emerges with the kind of really menacing screen presence only a few actors achieve..."
Uncut - 07/01/2004
"Nothing less than genius."
Former video store clerk Quentin Tarantino's directorial debut, RESERVOIR DOGS, is a brutally funny, supercharged introduction to his supremely distinct cinematic vision, which was later to become one of the most mimicked styles of the 1990s. Mastermind Joe Cabot (Lawrence Tierney) assembles a crew of top-notch criminals to pull off a jewelry store heist. As the film opens it becomes immediately clear that the plan backfired, forcing the survivors, who have gathered at an abandoned warehouse, to figure out if one of them is, in fact, a police informer. The crew--Mr. White (Harvey Keitel), an aged veteran; Mr. Orange (Tim Roth), a wounded newcomer; Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen), a psychopathic parolee; Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi), a bickering weasel; and Nice Guy Eddie (Chris Penn), Joe's son--begin to unravel as the pressure becomes too much for them to handle. When Joe arrives, the truth becomes clear in a vicious Mexican standoff.
Tarantino takes liberally from Hong Kong action flicks, most notably Ringo Lam's CITY ON FIRE, but his ultra-hip ?70s soundtrack and hysterical pop culture dialogue make the film seem wholly original and new. Taking a cue from the French New Wave--most notably Jean-Luc Godard--RESERVOIR DOGS remains one of the decade's most influential motion pictures.
In this unforgettable debut film from Quentin Tarantino, a group of perfect strangers have been assembled to pull off the perfect heist. Meticulously planned, nothing can go wrong. But it turns into a bloody ambush when one of them turns out to be a police informer. As the group begins to question each other's guilt, the simmering tensions threaten to explode the situation before the police have a chance to step in. Boldly blending graphic violence with comedic references to popular culture, RESERVOIR DOGS ushered in an often-mimicked style of filmmaking in the 1990s.