Jackie Brown (1997)

Wow. Jackie Brown was absolutely fantastic. It’s not just the excellent cast (seriously, what a cast), the brilliant soundtrack, or the great cinematography (the car-street shot around a third through the film is extremely memorable), it’s the writing that really makes this stand above a lot of Tarantino’s other films.

While I’m a huge fan of Tarantino’s later work and I’ll happily defend some of the so-called excesses Basterds and Django, I have to admit the restraint of Jackie Brown is very admirable and really does help make the film great. The film avoids violence (most shootings are offscreen) and avoids flashy Tarantino-esque dialogue for more grounded character-based conversations. Forster and Grier share some conversations about ageing that are so much more powerful for being restrained and not overdone than if they were typical clever and quotable Tarantino fare.

The characters in Jackie Brown might be the strongest in any Tarantino film, and the film overall is just so well-crafted and well-paced. I can’t overstate how much I enjoyed this film.

I give it four bags of money, and a plane ticket.

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