Whether you love him or hate him, Quentin Tarantino is a director whose movies and characters stick with you. The style in which he films is a bit gritty but he is a genius at pushing movies forward with nothing more than just dialogue and character development. Where most movies give their audience characters who no one can relate to or who are just filler, Tarantino makes every character, no matter how little the part, have a distinct personality. Some characters will be despised. Others will be loved. This list focuses on the top ten best characters in Tarantino movies, whether they were a hero or a villain.
Spoiler Warning: this list includes spoilers. Read at your own risk.
10. Jimmie Dimmick [Pulp Fiction]
Most Memorable Quote: "I don't need you to tell me how fucking good my coffee is, okay? I'm the one who buys it. I know how good it is. When Bonnie goes shopping she buys SHIT. I buy the gourmet expensive stuff because when I drink it I want to taste it."
Kicking off the list is Jimmie Dimmick. I have a soft spot for Jimmie and his flamboyant mania. The coffee monologue is one of the best scenes in the movie besides the watch scene. Even though he is not a main character, he is one that will stick with you more than most of the other characters in the movie. Getting roped into helping Vince and Jules clean the mess out of their car after Vince accidentally kills someone, he is only concerned about his wife coming home and finding a dead body in his garage. The result is comedic relief in a scene that could have turned out to be quite morbid.
9. Bellatrix Kiddo [Kill Bill]
Most Memorable Quote: "Those of you lucky enough to have your lives, take them with you. However, leave the limbs you've lost. They belong to me now. "
Bellatrix, aka The Bride, aka Black Mamba, is the main character of Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2. She was shot point-blank in the head and left for dead but she survived. Waking up four years later, she begins a streak of revenge spanning two different countries She is a powerful woman who can take out anyone who gets in her way. The character makes the audience feel for her during some of the more intense scenes. At the end, where she is reunited with her daughter, it is the most heartwarming scene in the movie.
8. Lawrence Dimmick AKA Mr. White [Reservoir Dogs]
Most Memorable Quote: "You shoot me in a dream, you better wake up and apologize."
Lawrence Dimmick, also known as Mr. White, is one of the men caught up in the heist gone wrong. Fiercely loyal to his boss, he went to jail for four years and never once told who he was working for. He is also the only one who believes in Mr. Orange, the undercover cop sent to take them out, and refuses to let anyone kill him. He even feels responsible for getting Orange shot and left for dead. He is no-nonsense and tends to be the more rational one in the group unless provoked. He has more morals than most and considers the heist as a job, a way to make money.
7. Jackie Brown [Jackie Brown]
Most Memorable Quote: "He told me. Besides, why else would an ATF man be after him?"
Jackie is a woman involved with smuggling money to a gang leader as a way to pay her bills. She uses her job as a flight attendant as a cover to do what she actually needs to do. After getting arrested, she decides to work for the police to help bust the man she works for. There are so many reasons to like Jackie. She is a woman who speaks her mind and has a personality that makes her so likeable. This whole movie is underrated and Jackie is, no doubt, one of the best characters portrayed in it.
6. Dr. King Schultz [Django Unchained]
Most Memorable Quote: "Alexander Dumas. He wrote "The Three Musketeers." I figured you must be an admirer. You named your slave after his novel's lead character. If Alexander Dumas had been there today, I wonder what he would have made of it?"
Dr. Schultz is the bounty hunter who frees Django and then offers him work. He is personally my favorite character in the movie. He is the only one who actually respects Django. The bounty hunting, German, doctor even goes as far as to help Django get his wife back at the cost of his own life. He often brings back his bounties dead, but he also shows compassion for people in general, as shown in his friendship with Django. He also seems deeply upset about the scene involving the dogs, going as far as to question Calvin about it later. Schultz even goes as far as sacrificing himself in order to save Django and Broomhilda.
5. Gogo Yubari [Kill Bill]
Most Memorable Quotes: "You call that begging? You can beg better than that?"
Gogo is the young schoolgirl assistant of O-Ren. She is a psychopath. While she does not have a big part in Kill Bill Vol. 1, she is the most unique. Her taunting ways and schoolgirl giggling before she kills someone is probably the most disturbing thing about the movie. She uses her innocence to lure people into a false sense of security before taking them out just because she wants to or because they annoy her. I personally love her because of how she acts. Plus, I adore the actress. The only downside is she is not featured longer.
4. O-Ren Ishii [Kill Bill]
Most Memorable Quote: "As your leader, I encourage you from time to time, and always in a respectful manner, to question my logic. If you're unconvinced that a particular plan of action I've decided is the wisest, tell me so, but allow me to convince you and I promise you right here and now, no subject will ever be taboo. Except, of course, the subject that was just under discussion. The price you pay for bringing up either my Chinese or American heritage as a negative is... I collect your fucking head. Just like this fucker here. Now, if any of you sons of bitches got anything else to say, now's the fucking time! "
O-Ren possibly has the best villain monologue of all time besides Batman's Harvey Dent's "villain" speech. She is a Chinese-Japanese-American female who winds up taking over the Yakuza and uniting them. Her history is explained in depth in the movie, but she gets trained by a Yakuza boss and then takes over his position after his death. She is also one of the best characters in the movie and the only downfall about her character is how little screentime she gets. She deserves a lot more than what she was given and could have been a more formidable rival for Beatrix.
3. Mr. Pink [Reservoir Dogs]
Most Memorable Quote: "Look, I ordered coffee. Now we've been here a long fucking time and she's only filled my cup three times. When I order coffee, I want it filled six times."
Mr. Pink is most notorious for being strictly against tipping. He is also a bit of a coward who looks after himself and no one else. But his personality definitely stays with the audience. Not to mention how much he hates the name "Mr. Pink", leading to a very amusing debate about why he cannot pick his own codename. His quirky dialogue is a comic relief in some of the more intense scenes of the movie. Combined with his personality, he is deserving of being in the top three. Especially since he was the only one smart enough to grab the diamonds and run, being the only survivor of the group of criminals.
2. Vincent "Vince" Vega [Pulp Fiction]
Most Memorable Quote: "Well, a Big Mac's a Big Mac, but they call it le Big-Mac. "
Vincent Vega is a walking disaster. He is a hitman who tends to get a bit sloppy, like when he accidentally shot Marvin in the face because "the car went over a bump" and his hand slipped. He is obsessed with reading and seems to question everything, including instructions he is given on how to handle things as seen when he argues with his drug dealer instead of immediately helping Mia during her overdose. Vince is fiercely loyal to his boss and, when given the chance to sleep with his boss' wife, he goes into the bathroom and convinces himself to just say goodnight and leave. Like his brother, Victor Vega, he is stoic and indifferent, but not a sadist, killing only when he has to.
1. Victor "Vic" Vega AKA Mr. Blonde [Reservoir Dogs]
Most Memorable Quote: "Yeah, bam, bam, bam, bam, bam. I told 'em not to touch the alarm... but they touched it. If they hadn't done what I told 'em not to do, they'd still be alive."
Mr Blonde is one of the main characters of Reservoir Dogs. He is known for the infamous "Meet Me In the Middle" dancing torture scene. There are so many reasons why this character is ranked as the number one best Quentin Tarantino character. He is a sadist with a hair trigger. While he may not have as much witty dialogue as other characters in Reservoir Dogs, he makes up for it in actions, including setting someone on fire and opening fire in the middle of their failed bank heist. When he does talk, however, he is typically blunt. Most of the time, he is usually heard threatening to kill someone or making excuses for why he killed someone. Mr. Blonde is a stoic, intelligent man with no regard for other people besides his boss, who he is fiercely loyal to.
Top 5 Honorable Mentions
© 2017 Leah Harageones
Is there any characters I missed? Let me know your favorite Tarantino character of all time.
iiMaddHatz on March 14, 2019:
Great list! Honestly i agree woth most of it, i would only add Hans Landa for that brilliant performance from Christoph Waltz
Bazook on November 18, 2017:
One line i use over and over from Pulp fiction “be cool Honey bunny” that be my favorite everybody’s entitled to their opinion .
Leah Harageones (author) from Lawrenceville on July 26, 2017:
Thank you. And I have him in the honorable mentions. He is Jules Winnfield. You are the third person to tell me he should've been on the actual list and not just honorable mention. I love Tarantino too. I can't wait for his Manson movie to come out.
Ryan from Louisiana, USA on July 26, 2017:
Great list but I would have to add Samuel L. Jackson's character from Pulp Fiction. That scene in the apartment is movie gold. I love Tarantino. Amazing film maker.