Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Reservoir Dogs (1992)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Reservoir Dogs (1992)

In emerging maverick writer/director Quentin Tarantino's cult film, the self-promoting videostore clerk in his debut-scripted and directed film demonstrated his exciting, self-taught, original filmmaking genius (with generous helpings of violence, sex, and profanity (almost 300 instances of the F-word)); the male-oriented, testosterone-fueled tale told about a group of cigarette-smoking, shades-wearing, low-life, color-coded or named Los Angeles criminals. Even Tarantino himself played one of the six main characters.

It told about a crime-gone-wrong, a botched jewelry store heist of Karina's Wholesale Diamonds; the concept was borrowed from The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)) about a jewelry heist that also went awry. The dark, noirish cult hit had witty dialogue and pop-cultural references, and broke many of the rules of conventional crime films. The non-linear crime was documented by jumping between both pre-heist and post-heist scenarios, but avoided the actual robbery itself. It contained numerous jump-cuts, elliptical story-telling, and flashbacks, and was set almost entirely in an abandoned coffin warehouse after the failed robbery.

Mr. Brown (Quentin Tarantino)

Mr. White (Harvey Keitel)

Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen)

Mr. Blue (Eddie Bunker)

Mr. Orange (Tim Roth)

Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi)
  • in the pre-credits opening breakfast table scene (an ensemble grouping), eight various criminal characters - mostly Mr. Brown (director Tarantino) - conversed about the meaning of Madonna's popular "Like a Virgin" song - "Let me tell you what Like a Virgin's 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...Like a Virgin's not about some sensitive girl who meets a nice fella. That's what True Blue's about. Now, granted, no argument about that...Let me tell you what Like a Virgin's about. It's all about this cooze who's a regular f--k machine. I'm talkin' morning, day, night, afternoon . . . dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick, dick... Then one day, she meets this John Holmes motherf--ker, and it's like, whoa baby. I mean, this cat is like Charles Bronson in The Great Escape. He's digging tunnels. She's getting this serious dick action and she's feelin' something she ain't felt since forever . . . Pain. Pain... It hurts. It hurts her. It shouldn't hurt her. You know, her pussy should be Bubble Yum by now, but when this cat f--ks her, it hurts. It hurts just like it did the first time. You see, the pain is reminding a f--k machine what it was once like to be a virgin. Hence...Like a Virgin."
  • at the end of the meal when everone was contributing to the bill, a reluctant Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi) complained about the waitress service, and argued that he didn't believe in the practice of tipping: "Uh uh, I don't tip...No, I don't believe in it...Don't give me that, if she don't make enough money, she can quit....I don't tip because society says I have to. All right, 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, uh, it's for the birds..."
  • during the opening titles credits, the jewel robbery gang (composed of eight total strangers) walked in slow-motion toward the camera (as they were identified) to the tune of "Little Green Bag"
  • after the failed heist, Mr. White (Harvey Kietel) - with Mr. Orange (Tim Roth) bleeding profusely from a stomach wound - met up with Mr. Pink in a warehouse rendezvous point; while discussing the heist, Mr. Pink strongly suspected that they had been set up: "Where did all those cops come from, huh?" (and that one of the criminals was a rat - in other words, a cop) - he recalled his escape - "I shot my way out. Everybody started shootin', so I blasted my way out of there" - the sequence was replayed with Pink frantically running down the street while pursued by three cops; he returned gunfire while he attempted to carjack a vehicle; he admitted that he didn't kill any 'real people': "I tagged a couple of cops"; White informed him that Brown was dead, and they talked about how 'psychopathic' Blonde had panicked and gone crazy and murdered several innocent civilians during the heist ("What you don't do is start shootin' up the place and start killin' people"); and it appeared that Blue and Blonde were missing (they were either arrested or dead); Pink admitted that he had stashed the diamonds nearby ("I got the diamonds...I stashed 'em")
  • further tension developed between Pink and White at the meeting point, when they were worried about the identity of a "rat" in their midst; they both drew guns deadlocked on each other: (Pink: "You wanna f--k with me? I'll show you who you're f--kin' with!" White: "You wanna shoot me, you little piece of s--t? Go ahead, take a shot!" Pink: "F--k you, White! I didn't create this situation, I'm dealin' with it! You're actin' like a first-year f--kin' thief! I'm actin' like a professional! If they get him, they could get you. They get you, they get closer to me and that can't happen! You're lookin' at me like it's my fault? I didn't tell him my name! I didn't tell him where I was from! S--t! Fifteen minutes ago you almost told me your name! You're gonna get stuck in a situation you created! So if you wanna throw bad looks around, throw 'em at a mirror!")
  • the sequence of White and Pink's altercation was interrupted by the sudden and unexpected appearance of suspicious, psychotic gang member Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen) at the hideout, who spoke out: "You kids shouldn't play so rough, somebody's gonna start cryin'"; during the heist, the "trigger-happy" Blonde had murdered several civilians; Pink wondered who was left of the original gang: "Did you see what happened to Blue? Do you know what happened - to you and Blue? That's all we were wonderin' about. Come on. Look, Brown is dead. Orange got it in the belly"; in agreement with Pink, White hypothesized to Blonde: "We think we got a rat in the house"; Blonde proudly showed off a kidnapped policeman in the trunk of his car - taken as hostage
Mr. Blonde's Torture of a Cop Hostage
  • the violent and menacing torture scene following the robbery when Mr. Blonde was left alone to take charge of the cop-hostage and Mr. Orange; to find out who was the 'rat' responsible for the set-up, Blonde excised the ear of his cop-hostage Marvin Nash (Kirk Baltz) (accompanied by the Stealer's Wheel song recording of Stuck in the Middle With You) and then threatened to set his gasoline-doused victim on fire
Mr. Orange's Killing of Mr. Blonde
  • suddenly, Mr. Orange, who was painfully bleeding to death from a bullet in the stomach and witnessing the torture from nearby, sat up and opened fire and killed Mr. Blonde - saving Marvin's life before he would have been incinerated
  • then, Mr. Orange delivered a remarkable confession to Marvin: "Listen to me, Marvin. I'm a-- Listen to me, Marvin Nash. I'm a cop"; Marvin admitted that he already knew: "Yeah, I know...Yeah, your name's Freddy somethin'"; and according to Marvin, the cops were waiting a block away until Joe Cabot showed up ("They're not to make a move 'til Joe Cabot shows up")
  • Mr. Orange pre-heist recited his pre-heist commode story (originally delivered to Joe Cabot when he was hired for the heist) when he encountered four LA County Sheriffs and a barking German shepherd in a restroom: "Panic hits me like a bucket of water. Bam! Right in the face. I'm standing there drenched in panic, and all these Sheriffs are lookin' at me and they know, man. They can smell it, sure as that f--kin' dog can...."; one of the Sheriffs was relating a story of a suspect reaching for the glove box while being warned not to - but he was only going for his vehicle registration: ("Stupid f--kin' citizen doesn't know how close he came to gettin' blown away. That close, man")
  • in the last de-briefing scene (in an abandoned L.A. warehouse) before the failed jewelry heist, elderly LA gangster Joe Cabot (Lawrence Tierney), who was orchestrating the heist, wanted the group of crooks to never talk about personal information or past activities; to replace their "Christian names," he handed out anonymous pseudonyms or aliases composed of color-codes (Mr. Brown, Mr. White, Mr. Blonde, Mr. Blue, Mr. Orange and Mr. Pink) to the six robbery gang members; "Mr. Pink" immediately raised an objection and complained about his faggot-sounding name: "Why am I Mr. Pink?...Why can't we pick our own colors?"; Joe explained: "No way. No way. Tried it once. It doesn't work. You get four guys all fightin' over who gets to be Mr. Black. They don't know each other, so nobody wants to back down"; when Mr. Pink suggested trading names with Mr. White, Joe overruled him: "Nobody's tradin' with anybody. This ain't a goddamn f--kin' city council meeting, you know" - and then gave him an ultimatum: "There's two ways you can go on this job -- my way or the highway"
  • in the next scene, another pre-heist sequence, Mr. White and Mr. Orange sat in a car and discussed the two-minute grab of diamonds; Mr. Orange explained that while Mr. Brown was waiting outside in a car, Mr. Blue and Mr. Blonde handled the customers and employees while Mr. White and Mr. Pink demanded diamonds from the manager in the back-room; White explained how he would deal with a recalcitrant manager: "If you wanna know somethin' he won't tell ya, cut off one of his fingers. The little one. Then tell him his thumb's next. After that, he'll tell you if he wears ladies underwear"; after his grisly strategy, White added: "I'm hungry. Let's go get a taco"
  • the post-heist escape continued to go horribly wrong when driver Brown was driving away from the scene with White and Orange; Brown died of his head wound; Mr. White unleashed a barrage of gunfire on a cop car and killed two officers; and Mr. Orange was shot in the gut by an armed female driver during an attempted car-jacking; Orange shot back and killed her but was seriously wounded; as he was driven back to the rendezvous point, Orange couldn't believe his bad-luck: "I can't believe she killed me. Who'd have f--king thought that?"
The Disastrous Post-Heist Escape Sequence

Driver Mr. Brown Blinded by Blood and Dying

White's Barrage of Gunfire at a Police Car

Mr. Orange Retaliated After Being Shot in the Stomach by Armed Woman

Mr. Orange: "I can't believe she killed me"
  • after returning to the hideout site with Mr. White and Mr. Pink, Cabot's "Nice Guy" son Eddie Cabot (Chris Penn) (with a bright tracksuit jacket) listened as Mr. Orange confessed to White about Blonde's torture of cop Marvin: ("Blonde went crazy. He slashed the cop's face, cut off his ear and was gonna burn him alive....Eddie, he was pulling a burn, man. He was gonna kill the cop and me. When you guys walked in, he was gonna kill you and run with the diamonds"); Orange's implication (affirmed by Mr. White) was that Blonde was the under-cover rat; Eddie non-chalantly put a few bullets into Marvin's body, and then he repeated Mr. Orange's claim: "You're saying that Mr. Blonde was gonna kill you and then when we got back, he was gonna kill us, take the satchel of diamonds and scram" - Eddie assertively denied that Orange would ever have betrayed his father on the job
  • shortly later, Eddie's father Joe Cabot arrived and confronted Mr. White over the loyalty of Mr. Orange; after Joe accused Orange of being a cop "That lump of s--t's workin' with the LAPD") Mr. White tried to defend Orange to Joe: ("Joe, trust me on this. You've made a mistake"), but Joe was adamant ("The cocksucker tipped off the cops and got Mr. Brown and Mr. Blue killed...Dead as Dillinger"); the scene evolved into a violent Mexican Standoff as all three (Joe, White, and Eddie) drew their guns and Eddie shouted out: "You stop pointin' that f--kin’ gun at my Dad!"; all three seemed to fire at one time - although White actually got off two shots and both Cabots were killed, but White was also injured
  • in the film's violent conclusion -- the uninjured Mr. Pink fled with the stashed diamonds; as Mr. White cradled Mr. Orange in his arms, he heard Orange's simple confession that he indeed was a cop: ("I'm a cop...I'm so sorry"); as the police stormed the warehouse after arresting Mr. Pink outdoors (he was faintly heard surrendering off-screen), Mr. White was ordered to put his gun down: ("Freeze!...Drop the gun, man!...We're gonna blow you away!") but disobeyed and possibly shot Mr. Orange in the head (off-screen) - and then collapsed during more gunfire

Mr. Brown's "Like a Virgin" Discussion

Mr. Pink's Views On Tipping

Famous Slo-Mo Walk of Criminals During Opening Titles

Post-Heist: Bloodied Mr. Orange and Mr. White Return to Hideout

Mr. White and Mr. Pink Argue About the Failed Heist and the Presence of a "Rat"

Mr. Pink's Post-Heist Flight Returning Gunfire

Pink and White: Guns Drawn and Deadlocked at Each Other

The Arrival of Suspicious Psychopath Mr. Blonde

Meanwhile, Mr. Orange Was Painfully Bleeding to Death

(Undercover Cop) Mr. Orange's Commode Story

The Pre-Heist Assignment of Color Coded Names by Elderly Gangster Joe Cabot (Lawrence Tierney) Who Was Orchestrating the Heist

Pre-Heist Planning by White and Orange

Nice Guy Eddie's Point-Blank Execution of Cop Marvin

Eddie's Disbelief of Mr. Orange's Version

The Concluding Confrontation: (l to r): Eddie, Joe, Mr. White, and Mr. Orange (dying on floor)

Joe's Accusation That The Dying Mr. Orange Was an LAPD Officer

Guns Drawn: Mexican Stand-Off

Mr. White With His Gun Pointed at Mr. Orange's Head, as Cops Stormed Building


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