Subscribe to our newsletter

(Credit: Alamy)

Film

Quentin Tarantino names his favourite death scenes of all time

Quentin Tarantino has faced criticisms for his violent artistic sensibilities, starting from his directorial debut Reservoir Dogs. Since then, Tarantino has often been unapologetic about his violent vision and has managed to emerge as one of the most prominent practitioners of arthouse action in the landscape of contemporary cinema.

When Reservoir Dogs was made, some scenes were singled out by critics who claimed that it was the most violent film ever made. At the time, Tarantino obviously denounced such claims as absurd and his own idol – Brian De Palma (who is also known for cinematic violence) – came to his defence who argued that violence is often indispensable to the visual narrative.

“Cinema is, as we’ve said a thousand times, is a visual medium and we’re interested in terrific visual sequences and many of them happen to be violent,” De Palma commented. Tarantino has advocated for the same, going on to make unforgettable action classics such as Kill Bill which have captured the imaginations of audiences around the world.

As a child, Tarantino was influenced by horror films, westerns and exploitation flicks which all had elements of violence in them. They left a deep impact on his mind and inspired him to be a filmmaker in many ways, with Tarantino often citing Sergio Leone and Mario Bava as the pioneers who changed his life.

Check out a list of Quentin Tarantino’s favourite violent moments below.

Quentin Tarantino’s favourite death scenes:

Tenebre (Dario Argento, 1982)

One of the finest examples of the Italian Giallo genre, Dario Argento’s 1982 cult classic Tenebre tells the story of an American novelist who finds himself being targeted by a serial killer, who was reportedly inspired by the books he wrote. The film contains explorations of metafiction and sexuality, now seen as one of Argento’s finest.

Tarantino has expressed his admiration for Dario Argento on multiple occasions but he named a particular scene from Tenebre as one of his favourite death scenes. It involves an iconic moment where the victim paints with her own blood on a wall after her arm is cut off.

Jason X (James Isaac, 2001)

For a long time, many thought that Quentin Tarantino would direct a project from the Friday the 13th franchise as it seemed to be a perfect union of unholy vision. However, it seems like an unlikely prospect now as Tarantino is looking to end his career with a final project.

Despite the missed opportunity, one of Tarantino’s favourite violent sequences happened in this 2001 instalment. The ingenious scene showed a woman’s face being solidified in liquid nitrogen and then shattering like glass when smashed against a counter.

The Prowler (Joseph Zito, 1981)

This obscure cult film might just contain Tarantino’s all-time favourite death scene as the director cannot stop talking about it. It revolves around college students who are hunted down and killed by a mysterious terroriser dressed up as a war veteran.

While commenting on the bizarre existence of the project, Tarantino said: There’s a terrific slasher movie called The Prowler, it was out right after they’d come down hard on those movies, but they got X-rated violence in. I don’t know who got a blowjob to get it done, but someone must have.”

“There’s a girl in the shower, with her boyfriend lying on the bed, and the prowler comes up and sticks a bayonet through the top of his head so it comes down through his chin,” Tarantino described. “It’s really slow. And he goes into the shower, where the chick is naked, and he stabs her with a pitchfork and as she’s screaming, he lifts her up the wall.”