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Quentin Tarantino reveals his 11 favorite films of all time

Britt Jones

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Quentin Tarantino reveals his 11 favorite films of all time

Featured Image Credit: Noam Galai/Screen Archives/Getty Images

When the genius of cinematic visuals decides a movie is great, you don’t question it.

But who could be guiding us on our watchlists before the end of the year?

It’s the mad hatter of directing, Quentin Tarantino.

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Tarantino has always been upfront about whether he enjoys or dislikes a film, and because of his track record with producing some of the most visually stunning pieces, you know his opinion matters.

If you’re looking for something to keep you entertained until Christmas, try watching one of his favourite films each night.

Here are Tarantino’s 11 favourite films:

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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Sergio Leone, 1966)

The Clint Eastwood classic was his top pick. Credit: MGM
The Clint Eastwood classic was his top pick. Credit: MGM

Quentin Tarantino’s favourite film is this Spaghetti western, which follows three gunslingers competing to find buried Confederate gold.

Tarantino told Empire Magazine that his favourite shot in the film was: “During the three-way bullring showdown at the end, the music builds to the giant orchestra crescendo, and when it gets to the first big explosion of the theme there’s a wide shot of the bullring.

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“After you’ve seen all the little shots of the guys getting into position, you suddenly see the whole wideness of the bullring and all the graves around them. It’s my favorite shot in the movie, but I’ll even say it’s my favorite cut in the history of movies.”

Rio Bravo (Howard Hawks, 1959)

Rio Bravo was Tarantino's second Western choice. Credit: IMDB
Rio Bravo was Tarantino's second Western choice. Credit: IMDB

This film about three men shooting up the Old West is one of the biggest influences on Tarantino’s filmography.

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He once famously said in an interview that: “Whenever I’m getting serious with a girl, I show her Rio Bravo, and she better f****** like it.”

Blow Out (Brian De Palma, 1981)

1981's Blow out features future Pulp Fiction star, John Travolta. Credit: FIlmway Pictures
1981's Blow out features future Pulp Fiction star, John Travolta. Credit: FIlmway Pictures

This movie about a sound editor accidentally recording a murder has had a great influence on the producer, who incorporated elements into Pulp Fiction, namely writing a role specifically for John Travolta, as he loved his performance so much.

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He once called the movie ‘some of Brian De Palma’s finest film,’ and that it "means it’s one of the greatest films ever made because as we all know, Brian De Palma is one of the finest directors of his generation."

Taxi Driver (Martin Scorsese, 1976)

Taxi Driver is widely regarded as one of the best films ever made. Credit: Columbia Pictures
Taxi Driver is widely regarded as one of the best films ever made. Credit: Columbia Pictures

Tarantino has called this Italian American classic ‘unarguably one of the greatest movies ever made’ due to the way it portrays a mentally unstable veteran working as a night-time taxi driver in New York City.

His Girl Friday (Howard Hawks, 1940)

His Girl Friday is the second-oldest of his 10 selections. Credit: Columbia Pictures
His Girl Friday is the second-oldest of his 10 selections. Credit: Columbia Pictures


This comedy-romance earned its spot on his list of the 10 best movies ever made, which is somewhat surprising as its very different stylistically from his other picks. Mostly because it depicts the love story between a newspaper editor and his ex-wife.

Five Fingers of Death (Jeong Chang-Hwa, 1972)

One of the most influential Kung fu movies of all time. Credit: Shaw Brothers
One of the most influential Kung fu movies of all time. Credit: Shaw Brothers

This is probably the most influential kung fu movie of all time, which is why Tarantino cites it as one of his all-time favourites.

It follows the story of a martial artist whose master promises his daughter's hand in marriage only if he wins an upcoming tournament.

It’s a bit of an underdog tale with some pretty ace action scenes.

Pandora’s Box (G. W. Pabst, 1929)

Pandora's Box was made during the birth of Hollywood in the late 1920s. Credit: Nero-Film AG
Pandora's Box was made during the birth of Hollywood in the late 1920s. Credit: Nero-Film AG

Pandora’s Box is visually stunning, so it’s no surprise it made the cut.

A story about the rise and fall of a young woman whose sexual nature inspires violence in those around her.

I mean, it sounds like his cup of tea.

Carrie (Brian De Palma, 1976)

Carrie inspired a lot of Tarantino's future work. Credit: Red Bank Films
Carrie inspired a lot of Tarantino's future work. Credit: Red Bank Films

Poor Carrie, the young girl who was tormented by bullies until some otherworldly possession gives her the power to obliterate everyone and everything within her sights.

This really is a stunning horror flick with a cult following and you can see how it shaped the way Tarantino approaches violence in his movies, with the director admitting to the director: “As a filmmaker, when you deal in violence, you’re actually penalized for doing a good job.”

Unfaithfully Yours (Preston Sturges, 1948)

Unfaithfully Yours was released against the backdrop of World War Two. Credit: 20th Century Fox
Unfaithfully Yours was released against the backdrop of World War Two. Credit: 20th Century Fox

This flick about a man wanting revenge after suspecting his wife is unfaithful is a brilliant piece of cinematic screening.

Tarantino once admitted that to calm himself down after losing Oscar nominations, he remembered ‘Preston Sturges is maybe a better writer than all the guys who have ever won before, and he didn’t win s***.’

Five Graves to Cairo (Billy Wilder, 1943)

He listed the 1943 epic as his 10th favourite film ever. Credit: Paramount Pictures
He listed the 1943 epic as his 10th favourite film ever. Credit: Paramount Pictures

It was only in 2008 that Tarantino listed this film as his 10th favourite film of all time due to its ability to tell a fantastic story about war and survival.

This story takes you along with a British serviceman who needs to disguise himself as a waiter as he plans on assassinating his enemy before deciding his cover may have a better use.

Jaws (Steven Spielberg, 1975)

Jaws was Steven Spielberg's first masterpiece. Credit: Universal Pictures
Jaws was Steven Spielberg's first masterpiece. Credit: Universal Pictures

Tarantino has compared this movie to a rubber band, citing that a filmmaker stretches for as far as it’ll hold - which Jaws certainly did.

Capturing the essence of terror and survival out in the sea against a giant shark, you’ll go through every emotion imaginable and you’ll love every second of it.

So, there you have it. Get watching!

Topics: Film & TV, News, Film and TV, Entertainment, Celebrity, Quentin Tarantino

Britt Jones
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