Trunk Shot
Quentin Tarantino loves this trope.
A specific type of Compartment Shot, which involves a character placing or retrieving something (or someone) in the trunknote  of a car. POV will usually be from within the trunk looking up at the character opening it, sometimes from the actual POV of a character who's been stuffed into the trunk.

Popularised by Quentin Tarantino who has a Trunk Shot in all of his films.

See Punk in the Trunk for one of the ways this shot can be used. Distant relative of the Huddle Shot.


Anime and Manga

  • In He Walked By Night, credited with being the first film to use this trope, the cops thoroughly inspect the trunk of a car.
  • In In Cold Blood: the cops put a box in the trunk of the car, after putting Dick in the car.
  • In Goodfellas there is a famous trunk scene, although the camera POV isn't actually looking out from inside the trunk.
  • In Uncle Buck, Buck and Tia look at Bug who is bound and gagged in the trunk.
  • In Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, the camera looks at Mad Max and a group of abandoned children, who find a laddered shaft under the trunk of a car wreck.
  • Every Quentin Tarantino movie ever:
    • Jackie Brown: on two different occassions. One where Ordell Jones wants Beaumont Livingston to get in the trunk. And one where Jackie Brown gets stuff from her trunk.
    • Kill Bill: The Bride is talking to Sophie Fatale, who is in the trunk.
    • Pulp Fiction: Jules and Vince when they take their guns from the trunk.
    • Reservoir Dogs: looking out from the trunk where the captured cop is.
    • From Dusk Till Dawn (which Tarantino scripted and acts in, but did not direct)
    • Death Proof (Inverted, this one is actually a shot from under the front hood of a car).
    • Inglourious Basterds: the POV is lying on the ground when Rain and Donowitz use a knife on a Nazi.
    • Django Unchained: the POV is from the ground when Django points his gun at Big John Brittle.
    • The Hateful 8: A wounded Bob's POV before Marquis finishes him off.

Live-Action TV
  • Breaking Bad: In the Cold Open for the Season 5 Premier, this shot is used as Walt looks at the M60 in his trunk.
  • Faking It does it in the season 2 premiere when Shane kidnaps Lauren's boyfriend Tommy.
  • In "And His Watch is Ended" of Game of Thrones, Varys shows Tyrion a trapped sorcerer that is kept in a large box, bound and gagged, Varys and Tyrion are shown watching him from this angle, with part of the lid and the box visible.
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia uses this trope in "Paddy's Pub: The Worst Bar in Philadelphia" Given the context, it may be an additional shout-out to Tarantino's films in general
  • Life on Mars: Gene Hunt does this to Sam Tyler at least once.
  • Monk: In "Mr. Monk and the Other Detective," Monk and Marty Eels look at the store manager's car and the camera shooting them from inside the trunk.
  • My Mad Fat Diary uses this trope in its first episode, when Karim is first introduced.
  • Pilot episode of The Streets of San Francisco (1972) contains one near the end of an episode, when Stone, Keller and Malone find a chest with victim's belongings.
  • Stranger Things: In "The Bathtub", Hopper gets one when he and his lieutenants find the monster hunting equipment in Jonathan's trunk.
  • In Supernatural, the Winchesters keep their weapons in the trunk, and so it represents their "family business." The last shot of the pilot is a dramatic trunk shot with the trunk slamming shut serving as a cut to black. Also an example of Bookends, as season 2 ends with the exact same shot, and line/theme ("We've got work to do.").
  • The Walking Dead: Rick and Shane argue about their prisoner in their car.

  • The music video for the Dixie Chicks' "Goodbye Earl" uses the trunk shot when the girls take Earl for dumping. It uses a similar shot (not in a trunk) earlier when Earl's on the floor dying of poison.
  • The page picture for the Grindcore group Pig Destroyer.
  • N.W.A.'s Straight Outta Compton 's album cover.
  • In the video for Axelle Red's 1998 music video Rester femme, Axelle looks at her husband, who is bound and gagged in the trunk.
  • In Shakira's video for Objection (Tango), she is smiling sadistically at her ex-boyfriend and his mistress, who are bound and gagged in the trunk.

Video Games

Web Original

Alternative Title(s): Tarantino Trunk Shot