Jackie Brown

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 340 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 4 out of 340

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User Reviews

  1. May 18, 2016
    8
    Jackie Brown is truly an underrated film full of great characters and a fantastic plot that makes Ocean's 11 a little jealous. Though critics were hard on it, it remains a true homage to blaxsplotation films from the 1970s.
  2. Apr 17, 2016
    7
    7
    Although well directed Jackie Brown fails to be anything new. It starts slow and it never really speeds up like a typical Tarantino film does. It has no major flaws per say it just isn't anything special. It is entertaining and there was no problem with the acting but as a film it just didn't live up to it's potential.
  3. Apr 3, 2016
    5
    Tarantino's Latest Caper `Jackie Brown' loses velocity.

    The saga of Quentin Tarantino is unique. Three years ago, he was a critical and commercial darling with "Pulp Fiction." Then he went on to annoy everybody by showing up everywhere and producing bad movies and blabbing on talk shows, to the extent that now, with the release of "Jackie Brown," his first feature since "Pulp Fiction,"
    Tarantino's Latest Caper `Jackie Brown' loses velocity.

    The saga of Quentin Tarantino is unique. Three years ago, he was a critical and commercial darling with "Pulp Fiction." Then he went on to annoy everybody by showing up everywhere and producing bad movies and blabbing on talk shows, to the extent that now, with the release of "Jackie Brown," his first feature since "Pulp Fiction," it's as if he's making a comeback.

    Maybe he understands the value of diminished expectations. Had "Jackie Brown" been released at the tail end of Quentinmania, back when he was Orson Welles Jr., everybody would have been disappointed. But today, with much of the public ready to write Tarantino off as either an idiot savant or an idiot, "Jackie Brown" is looking like a fairly satisfactory piece of work.

    It might even be a wise career move: Make a movie that's not so great as to annoy those rooting against you, yet good enough that no one can deny your talent. One gets the feeling, watching "Jackie Brown," that it's the kind of film Tarantino could make once every 10 months for the rest of his life. The picture is an adaptation of Elmore Leonard's 1995 best-seller "Rum Punch," but with the setting moved from Florida to Los Angeles and the dialogue Quentinized. The novel's Jackie Burke, a white woman, has become Jackie Brown, played by Pam Grier, the legendary heroine of the blaxploitation films of the '70s.

    From the beginning Tarantino tries to give "Jackie Brown" the flavor of a '70s low-budget genre movie, with interiors that evoke that decade and a soundtrack made up of early '70s funk music. It doesn't quite work. The music clashes with the modern-day setting and takes the audience out of the moment.
    Yet from the first scene, there is the kick of once again entering a Tarantino universe. Samuel L. Jackson plays Ordell, a dealer in illegal weapons, who lectures a newly released ex-con about the relative merits of various guns: "Then there's the AK-47, when you absolutely, positively have to kill every m-- in the room."

    Tarantino introduces a number of characters and manages to keep track of all of them. Robert De Niro plays Ordell's ex-con buddy, a fairly bland role. Bridget Fonda has slightly more fun as Ordell's girlfriend, an ill-tempered pothead. But the heart of the story involves Jackie, a 44- year-old flight attendant who's arrested for smuggling Ordell's money across the Mexican border.

    The movie fully exploits Grier's patented toughness in only one scene, in which Jackie gets the drop on Ordell when he comes to kill her. Unfortunately, Tarantino chooses to film that moment in almost total darkness. But Grier brings other qualities into the mix besides toughness: poise, an aura of fatalism and wisdom, and an idiosyncratic style. Grier talks the way Johnny Cash sings -- out of the side of her mouth. "Jackie Brown" is essentially a caper movie, in which Jackie and her smitten bail bondsman (Robert Forster) set out to steal half a million dollars from Ordell right under the noses of federal officers. But Tarantino jazzes up the story with characteristic comic touches. Crooks leave a crime scene and have trouble finding their car in a parking lot. Violence springs up for the silliest of reasons, with a suddenness that stirs uneasy laughter.

    Borrowing a trick from Stanley Kubrick's "The Killing," Tarantino presents the same incident involving an exchange of money three times, from three points of view. He does it for little reason besides sheer playfulness. But playfulness is OK. There's something appealing in watching Tarantino borrow styles and techniques as if he were a kid taking items from a toy chest.

    Yet, as the film wears on, the mar riage of Leonard and Tarantino proves incompatible, or at least rocky.

    Tarantino's playful asides and slow buildups rob Leonard's caper story of its velocity. Scene by scene, "Jackie Brown" is amusing, but after two hours, it seems sluggish, and at that point still has a half-hour to go.

    The slow pace kills the sense of urgency, and the length and breadth of the film makes the story seem insignificant. Tarantino is still someone to watch, but "Jackie Brown," before it's over, becomes a who-cares proposition.
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  4. Sep 13, 2015
    7
    "Jackie Brown's" unpredictable story may get ahead of itself here and there, but thanks to some snappy dialogue work from Tarantino and a terrific lead performance from Pam Grier, the movie's worth the watch.
  5. chw
    May 25, 2015
    8
    Jackie Brown is a very good movie. It is slightly confusing, but it's easy to make up something to make it less confusing. This is not one of Quentin Tarantino's best movie, however, it's still worth a watch. Or two.
  6. Apr 18, 2015
    7
    I pretty sure I liked it. The acting, dialogue, and camera work all really good. The film delivers an engaging story that is sold on the presentation, acting, and dialogue. The thing about Tarintino is that his strength seems to lie in characters and dialogue, which are the best thing in that film. Tarintino isn’t good at writing story. The film’s plot isn’t bad in fact it is quiteI pretty sure I liked it. The acting, dialogue, and camera work all really good. The film delivers an engaging story that is sold on the presentation, acting, and dialogue. The thing about Tarintino is that his strength seems to lie in characters and dialogue, which are the best thing in that film. Tarintino isn’t good at writing story. The film’s plot isn’t bad in fact it is quite suspenful and engaging there were just times when it felt convoluted to a point where I didn’t get it and the plot feels quite too similar to Reservoir Dogs. It’s a well made film I just hope that Tarintino lets the story take a backseat next time, although knowing what his next film is I know that isn’t he case. Expand
  7. Nov 11, 2014
    9
    Easily my favourite of Tarantino's pictures--it showed the world he actually had a heart and could make something truly original, rather than simply a combination of his favourite set-pieces from a particular genre.
  8. Jan 1, 2014
    8
    Possibly my favorite director of all time, Quentin Tarantino adapts Elmore Leonards novel Rum Punch for the big screen. I haven't read Rum Punch but according to people who have this is a bloody good adaptation. Full of contrasting characters who deliver sometimes chilling sometimes hilarious lines and always keep your eyes fixed to the screen, even in the scenes which regrettably are aPossibly my favorite director of all time, Quentin Tarantino adapts Elmore Leonards novel Rum Punch for the big screen. I haven't read Rum Punch but according to people who have this is a bloody good adaptation. Full of contrasting characters who deliver sometimes chilling sometimes hilarious lines and always keep your eyes fixed to the screen, even in the scenes which regrettably are a bit slow moving. Much like Pulp Fiction the movie is mainly enjoyable because of the impeccably written dialogue and one liners, Samuel L Jackson returns as another foul mouthed black skinned murderer and yes he says a lot in this too. However he is not the title character Jackie Brown who is played ironically by Pam Grier, as a comeback role, most well known for the blaxploitation movies of the 60's and 70's such as Coffy and Black Mama. Robert De Niro is brilliant as the almost totally silent character Louis Gara the sort of sidekick to Samuel L Jackson, in one of his few self parody roles of the 90's. While there are many others which I could mention (who all help you to become immersed in the movie) these are the three main characters even if they do not get along well. To be honest the only real flaw with Jackie Brown, apart from a few slightly boring scenes isn't even good or bad. In my personal, and possibly wrong, opinion it's a bit to much like Pulp Fiction. From the characters to the retro soundtrack and segments everything is a bit more of the same. Yes it is still interesting because no one can deny how incredibly entertaining Pulp Fiction is, but Tarantino doesn't venture into any new genres or territory. A few years after the release of Jackie Brown he did, but it was a little to late. Definitely doesn't ruin the whole movie though that is certain. I found Jackie Brown to be nowhere near as good as Pulp Fiction or Reservoir Dogs. But ideal entertainment for a movie addict like myself and many others on this website, how easily Tarantino makes you feel emotion for the people involved in the plot is amazing. I was even feeling sad at the failure of Samuel L Jackson's plan despite him being a murdering pot head gun selling bastard. Whether or not it's a masterpiece like many critics claim, isn't for me to decide I actually think it's not far off. A brilliant homage to the blaxploitation genre, but also a brilliant crime thriller full of awesome lines and killer characters. Jackie Brown gets 4 stars from me. Expand
  9. Dec 27, 2013
    8
    Tarantino's least violent movie, Jackie Brown has a more complex plot and more character interaction, compared with Pulp Fiction's shoot em up, blood splatter tendencies. Jackie Brown is good, and it keeps you interested, but it could be a little shorter and some of the dialogue could be cleaned up a bit.
  10. Nov 23, 2013
    7
    Although well directed Jackie Brown fails to be anything new. It starts slow and it never really speeds up like a typical Tarantino film does. It has no major flaws per say it just isn't anything special. It is entertaining and there was no problem with the acting but as a film it just didn't live up to it's potential.
  11. Aug 12, 2013
    8
    Jackie Brown is a well acted, well directed, and interesting film. Like all Tarantino films, it has many of his trademarks that make it clear who the director is. It is a little long, but regardless, it is a worthy follow up to Pulp Fiction.
  12. May 27, 2013
    6
    Posted on 5/26/13 08:04 PM
    QTs third film delivers none of the thrills you would expect to get from his work however this film does deliver enough twist and turns that make this film enjoyable and not a such a waste of time
  13. Apr 29, 2013
    6
    This quirky film had a solid cast with some great acting, but that was the best thing going for it as storyline wise I was a little lost and even bored at times. I quite like Tarantino's films but this isn't one of them, and even though I can appreciate where he was going with this one and I'm sure others liked it, I simply didn't as it's just not my type of movie I can sit back and enjoy.This quirky film had a solid cast with some great acting, but that was the best thing going for it as storyline wise I was a little lost and even bored at times. I quite like Tarantino's films but this isn't one of them, and even though I can appreciate where he was going with this one and I'm sure others liked it, I simply didn't as it's just not my type of movie I can sit back and enjoy. Props to Pam Grier who played a great female lead though. Expand
  14. Mar 9, 2013
    8
    A well-written, fun film to watch. Even though though it doesn't provide the strong gleeful violence Tarantino provides, fans should be pleased with the spectaculary performances and the overall outline of this film.
  15. Jan 13, 2013
    7
    Jackie Brown is a solid effort from Tarantino. The dialogue has the usual flair and is occasionally laugh-out-loud funny. The plot is fairly interesting and the performances are good. That said, there's something missing in Jackie Brown that restrains it from achieving the same excellence as Pulp Fiction or Reservoir Dogs. I can't put my finger on what it is exactly but I do know that itJackie Brown is a solid effort from Tarantino. The dialogue has the usual flair and is occasionally laugh-out-loud funny. The plot is fairly interesting and the performances are good. That said, there's something missing in Jackie Brown that restrains it from achieving the same excellence as Pulp Fiction or Reservoir Dogs. I can't put my finger on what it is exactly but I do know that it isn't quite in the same league. Expand
  16. Jan 12, 2013
    4
    The start of this movie was excellent, a classic Tarentino brutal fun ride but the drawn out build up and uninteresting characters bring it down to a mid level movie.
  17. Dec 27, 2012
    10
    Easily Quentin Tarantino's most underrated film, it had hilarious scenes mixed with great dialogue and soundtrack. The acting from everyone was superb especially the more quirky ones.
  18. Jul 4, 2012
    8
    I always check out Tarentino films and this one is in my collection of movies. I can watch it again and again. A true tribute to 70's blackploitation films. Plot is pretty basic but the all star cast brings out the dialog and intent of the film (Deniro kills it). Classic lines litter this flick but it is not Reseviour Dogs or Pulp Fiction, but among his best.
  19. May 8, 2012
    6
    Jackie Brown is a fairly good and watchable movie - it's got that Tarantino staple mark of building characters so you really get to know them, and doing this helps blur the simple line usually found between 'goodie vs baddie' for you to appreciate the film from a few different angles. It breaks tradition with the typical young, virile lead roles replaced by elder, more realistic charactersJackie Brown is a fairly good and watchable movie - it's got that Tarantino staple mark of building characters so you really get to know them, and doing this helps blur the simple line usually found between 'goodie vs baddie' for you to appreciate the film from a few different angles. It breaks tradition with the typical young, virile lead roles replaced by elder, more realistic characters and deserves recognition for doing so as it gives the film a more authentic flavour. It also delivers a nicely sequenced last 1/4, which flows well and finishes the film off satisfyingly. The trouble is, there's too many boring bits in it and it's slowly paced - the middle 3rd seems to drag especially. It's not a boring film overall, but it does have boring bits and it's a tough ask to watch it all the way through in one sitting without a beer break. Nothing mind-blowing, decent enough and with a great soundtrack, but nothing particularly memorable either. Collapse
  20. May 26, 2011
    10
    I agree that this is a vastly underrated movie and as Roger Ebert asserts, anyone who complains that it is too long has developed cinematic ADD. Beautifully written and developed characters, suspense, believable but amazing turns and twists throughout. It is just more subtle than Reservoir Dogs and less manic than Pulp Fiction. Pam Grier is a real woman, and this is a great movie.
  21. Mar 6, 2011
    8
    A more mellower Tarantino film, Jackie Brown is a faithful tribute to 70's Blaxploitation films with Pam Grier starring, still looking amazing after years. While lacking in violence, Jackie Brown's strong point is its slow but carefully written plot but only appeals to the most dedicated and the most attentive. Acting is brilliant as in all of Tarantino's films accompanied by stylishA more mellower Tarantino film, Jackie Brown is a faithful tribute to 70's Blaxploitation films with Pam Grier starring, still looking amazing after years. While lacking in violence, Jackie Brown's strong point is its slow but carefully written plot but only appeals to the most dedicated and the most attentive. Acting is brilliant as in all of Tarantino's films accompanied by stylish directing and smart writing. Expand
  22. Aug 26, 2010
    7
    "Jackie Brown" is a fresh departure from Tarantino's other films (which is probably why it's the least appreciated), as it plays out mostly as a straightforward crime drama. However, all of the director's trademarks are still there - much of the movie is spent focusing on minutiae and non-progressive dialogue, though the film as a sum of parts isn't quite as fulfilling as his other features.
  23. JonL
    Aug 16, 2007
    4
    I can certainly see what Tarantino wanted to do--explore the characters, but these characters are so incredibly mundane that it's just painful at 160 minutes. I think Tarantino realized this and just padded it out, which is why every shot in the movie is held to an absurdity, which probably made it impossible to edit to something reasonable given the lack of weight in the material. I can certainly see what Tarantino wanted to do--explore the characters, but these characters are so incredibly mundane that it's just painful at 160 minutes. I think Tarantino realized this and just padded it out, which is why every shot in the movie is held to an absurdity, which probably made it impossible to edit to something reasonable given the lack of weight in the material. The characters are boring rehashes (a waste of great talent), the dialogue Tarantino has so much obvious talent for is mediocre and the film is a good hour too long (maybe even more). What a shame. Expand
  24. DanS.
    Jun 22, 2007
    9
    This was a more mature and thoughtful film than the over-praised "Pulp Fiction". Violence was treated more seriously, and Tarantino took time in this one to explore the motives of the characters. The tale was really about everyone in the tale, not only Jacki Brown. All the actors were convincing, especially Robert Forster. Bravo !!
  25. JamesM.
    Dec 20, 2005
    10
    Only these words, written by Roger Ebert, can accurately describe how I feel about this film (and many other films too): Those who say it is too long have developed cinematic attention deficit disorder. How on earth you could call this masterpiece of writing, directing and acting overlong and boring I have no idea. Did you have too much red cordial before seeing the movie. Sometimes Only these words, written by Roger Ebert, can accurately describe how I feel about this film (and many other films too): Those who say it is too long have developed cinematic attention deficit disorder. How on earth you could call this masterpiece of writing, directing and acting overlong and boring I have no idea. Did you have too much red cordial before seeing the movie. Sometimes audiences have no idea what they're talking about, see The Green Mile, but in this case the people are right and the critics are just plain stupid. Expand
  26. KyleA.
    Jun 27, 2005
    10
    His best by far. An actual "movie" rather than a collection of scenes. And what a movie it is.
  27. J.RyanG.
    Jun 17, 2005
    10
    Like the most enjoyable Sunday afternoon of your life, Tarantino's best storytelling to date unwinds slowly and gracefully, the end of the day inevitable and something to dread.
  28. DaneS.
    Apr 21, 2005
    10
    Great film. Even better than the masterpiece novel. Quentin Tarantino's worst... but it is better than a lot of films out there!
  29. wongit
    Mar 12, 2005
    7
    Good but not his best. it had great characters and great dialogue, but the story just isnt as captivating or interesting as tarantino's other masterpieces. its good but, its not tarantino's usual works of art. I did enjoy it however, it was still a very fun movie.
  30. Tom
    Dec 17, 2004
    8
    The thing that makes this movie is just a couple of outstanding scenes. The Beamount scene for example, is pure genius. Perhaps overlong, and not always as engaging as Pulp or Dogs, but more so than Kill Bill, this manages to keep our attention till the very end. A must see, though just for a few scenes.
  31. TylerC
    Dec 15, 2004
    5
    If you look up Tarantino in the dictionary the meaning should be violence and stupid seventies music. The ALL-STAR cast is the only thing that saves it.
  32. MichaelM.
    Oct 23, 2004
    9
    This is actually very different from Quentin Tarantino's two earlier films 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Reservoir Dogs'. First of all, it isn't nearly as violent as those films, but still has some intense brutal violence. Second of all, this wasn't an original screenplay, it was an adaptation of Elmore Leonard's novel 'Rum Punch'. This really This is actually very different from Quentin Tarantino's two earlier films 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Reservoir Dogs'. First of all, it isn't nearly as violent as those films, but still has some intense brutal violence. Second of all, this wasn't an original screenplay, it was an adaptation of Elmore Leonard's novel 'Rum Punch'. This really didn't differ all that much from Rum Punch, accept Jackie Brown was white instead of black. I think this different kind of Tarantino movie is actually a masterpiece! I think this is a fantastic film, with great writing, directing and especially acting (like all of Quentin's films). The story is about a middle-aged black woman Jackie Brown (Pam Grier) who is a stewardess for a crummy airline that flies from L.A. to Cabo San Lucas. When she gets caught by two police detectives Nicolette (Michael Keaton) and Dargus (Michael Bowen) for transporting drugs and money for a brutal thug Ordell Robbie (Samuel L. Jackson) she ends up in jail. When she gets out of jail on bail, an older bail bondsman named Max Cherry (Robert Forrester) who is Ordell's bail bondsman as well, falls for her. Out of jail, she must help Nicolette to catch Ordell, but if Ordell finds out her plan, he will have absolutley no problem killing her. With the choices of helping Ordell and risking going to jail and helping Nicolette and risk getting killed, she decides to play them both and work with Max to get $500,000 from Ordell, turn Ordell into the cops, and run off with the money. This film also stars Robert DeNiro as Ordell's partner in crime, Louis, Bridget Fonda as Ordell's girlfriend, Melanie, and Chris Tucker as a loud mouth petty thief, Beaumont Livingston. Great performances given in by Pam Grier, Robert DeNiro, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Keaton, Bridget Fonda and especially, Robert Forrester in the role which earned him an Academy Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actor of the Year in 1997. This film is great, and I highly recommend you see it. Although not as good as 'Reservoir Dogs' or 'Pulp Fiction', this is still going to be a memorable Tarantino film. Rent it Today (But see 'Reservoir Dogs' and 'Pulp Fiction' first). (2/27/03) Expand
  33. PatC.
    Sep 27, 2004
    7
    Essential Tarantino, and an original idea even if understated and shoddy. Seems indisputable here that foxy chicks doing drugs and spontaneously undressing appear in his films because he likes them there, regardless of whether artistic merit and plot continuity is served. And with this film I now strongly suspect, while admiring his insights into criminal behavior, that on some level of Essential Tarantino, and an original idea even if understated and shoddy. Seems indisputable here that foxy chicks doing drugs and spontaneously undressing appear in his films because he likes them there, regardless of whether artistic merit and plot continuity is served. And with this film I now strongly suspect, while admiring his insights into criminal behavior, that on some level of Quentin's life he has been a participant in his celluloid depictions and must be guilty of something. Aren't we all? If this kind of film appeals to us, that must be his point. Glad I finally figured that out. Expand
  34. BillB.
    May 21, 2004
    10
    One hell of a film, Tarantino rules!!!!
  35. JaredS.
    Oct 15, 2003
    9
    Drastically underrated. Tarantino never disappoints, and this film is no exception, as most people would like you to believe. It's not as intensely charged as Pulp or Dogs, but still is entertaining. This is just a change of pace for QT, and the only thing different is the lack of violence. Although, there is some, there's not as much as his previous films. The dialogue provides Drastically underrated. Tarantino never disappoints, and this film is no exception, as most people would like you to believe. It's not as intensely charged as Pulp or Dogs, but still is entertaining. This is just a change of pace for QT, and the only thing different is the lack of violence. Although, there is some, there's not as much as his previous films. The dialogue provides the necessary twists in the film. See it, you won't be disappointed. Expand
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 23
  2. Negative: 1 out of 23
  1. But for all its enthusiasm, this film isn't sharp enough to afford all the time it wastes on small talk, long drives, trips to the mall and favorite songs played on car radios.
  2. 75
    Tarantino keeps things moving along nicely, with a heavier dose of humor and less violence than in Pulp Fiction, but, on the whole, this movie seems more like the work of one of his wannabes than something from the director himself.
  3. 78
    It's a straight-ahead caper flick, very cool, and very, very Seventies (although it takes place in 1995), from production and costume design on down to the soundtrack.