True Romance may have been directed by Tony Scott, but there can be little doubt that it is Quentin Tarantino’s movie. This 1993 film was based on his screenplay and, like Reservoir Dogs, the first film he directed, True Romance was commercially unsuccessful when it was released, but like Reservoir Dogs in the years since it has justifiably come to be viewed as a classic.
The heart of the story is simple – boy meets girl and falls in love. This being a Tarantino film however, the boy is a kung-fu movie buff the girl is an escort, and their wild romance involves murder, drugs and the mother of all Mexican standoffs.
The cast is excellent; what now looks like an all-star lineup actually comprises mainly people who at the time were either in need of a career boost (Christian Slater, Dennis Hopper, Christopher Walken) or just getting started (Samuel L Jackson, Brad Pitt) and these performers, combined with Tarantino’s immensely clever script, produce some extraordinary scenes, such as a showdown between Walken and Hopper that ranks amongst the best in cinema history.
Gary Oldman’s brief role is arguably some of his finest work. It seems fitting that amongst the film’s last lines we find a perfect summary of – ‘You’re so cool. You’re so cool. You’re so cool.’
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