YMMV / Reservoir Dogs

  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Some suspect that Mr. Pink is obsessed with appearing professional because he actually has no idea what he's doing.
      Pink: This is bad, this is bad, this is bad..."
      Pink looks at the injured Orange, then at White: Is it bad?
    • Also, you could argue that the reason why Mr Orange was so upset at first was not only because of his wound, but also that he just injured a civilian and witnessed a lot of people (mostly other cops) being shot while pretending he didn't care about them. Just pay attention to his face during the flashbacks. The dialogue would certainly back this up. As White drags him into the warehouse, Orange says something like "She had a baby, man, she had a baby" - which suggests that he's more than a little rattled about having killed that woman.
    • Some believe that Mr. White was actually in love with Mr. Orange and use it to justify him betraying all of his close friends to protect Orange.
    • Did Mr. White shoot Mr. Orange to stop his suffering from his obviously fatal wounds? Did he do it because he felt betrayed by the revelation that Orange was an undercover cop and his protecting him caused the death of several longtime friends? Some weird mixture of both?
    • Who is the hero of the movie? Mr. White? Mr. Orange? Both of them? Neither of them? It's entirely up to the viewer.
    • Was Mr. Blonde always a psychopath? Or did prison really get to him?
  • Complete Monster: Vic Vega, also known as Mr. Blonde, despite his apparently calm and clear-headed demeanor, is a callous and psychopathic criminal who makes even his own partners-in-crime wary. A flashback during the movie reveals that Vega had a history of raping "punks" in prison. Employed for a simple bank robbery, Mr. Blonde went on a rampage when one of the tellers set off an alarm, gunning down several innocent people, an action which even horrified his fellow criminals. After being left alone with a police officer he had kidnapped after the massacre, Mr. Blonde proceeds to torture him for his own amusement, slashing his face and cutting off his ear, all while singing and dancing to "Stuck in the Middle With You" by Stealers Wheel, before dousing him in gasoline and trying to set him on fire. In a movie filled with hardened criminals, Mr. Blonde stands out as a violent and sadistic psychopath.
  • Counterpart Comparison: The entire plot of the movie bears an uncanny resemblance to the last half hour of Ringo Lam's City on Fire. The two are so similar in fact, that Jeff Dawson published an article for Empire magazine extensively comparing the two scene-by-scene. Writer and filmmaker, Mike White created a short film called Who Do You Think You're Fooling? with the the two movies bleeding into each other almost completely. Rotten Tomatoes also created a feature addressing this issue in their "Homage or Stealing?" series.
    • Mr. White happens to be a resemblance to Fu from City On Fire. Both men are thieves who get involved in robbing the jewellery store for diamonds. But after their heists goes horribly wrong, both men want to get out of their situation alive and at the same time, bonds with their friend, who unbeknownst to them, is an undercover cop.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Gruesome torture set to "Stuck In The Middle With You" is funnier than it should be.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: There's a divide between "Little Green Bag" and "Stuck In The Middle With You."
  • Cult Classic: Made only $2.8 million at the box office (though this was still about double its shoestring budget), but is widely known and beloved these days, especially once Tarentino's Pulp Fiction was a smash hit and audiences doubled back to his first film.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Mr. Blonde. 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die aptly described Michael Madsen's performance as "creepily mesmerising".
    • A lot of fans, as well as casual viewers, name Mr. Pink as their favourite "Mister". Also P!nk allegedly chose her stage name in honour of the character.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Mr. Blonde. The fact that he's played by Michael Madsen certainly helps.
  • Fanon: There are two popular, but mutually exclusive, theories about this movie's connection to Pulp Fiction, which many fans accept as canon.
    • The events of Reservoir Dogs occur at the same time as the events of Pulp Fiction, and the police never seem to notice any of the violent crimes in Pulp Fiction because they're occupied with the jewelry heist and its bloody aftermath.
    • The mysterious briefcase in Pulp Fiction contains the diamonds from the heist in Reservoir Dogs. This has at least some basis in fact, as Word of God has confirmed that the briefcase was supposed to contain diamonds in the first draft of the movie.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Since Mr. Blonde had served four years prior to the events depicted in the film, a plausible explanation for his dislike of alarms is that he got caught because of one.
  • Fridge Horror: Just what did Mr.Blonde experience in prison that molded him into the psychopath he became?
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Nice Guy Eddie vouched for Vick to be a part of the heist because he considered Vick the most reliable individual in the organization. With no idea that he'd be the catalyst to a series of catastrophic events for the heist group.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Mr. Pink suggests that he be called Mr. Purple instead so that he doesn't sound gay. Purple later became heavily associated with gay and lesbian symbols.
  • Ho Yay: Mr. Orange and Mr. White in particular, as they get pretty damn emotionally intimate for two people who don't know each other too well (there's even a scene that features a Security Cling) and also Mr. Blonde and Nice Guy Eddie.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Mr. White, being the most sympathetic criminal in the film.
  • Memetic Mutation: The "world's smallest violin" scene.
  • Moral Event Horizon: The characters talk plenty about how bad it is to leave someone alone with Mr. Blonde, but you have no idea how much they mean it.
  • Narm: Mr. Orange's panicked voice, played for drama, fluctuates between high-pitched screeching and gravely lower tones, sounding a bit distractingly like Bobcat Goldthwait's comedic persona.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • Mr. Blonde is pretty damn creepy when he's in his psychopathic behaviour.
    • The infamous ear cutting scene.
  • Tear Jerker: The final scene between Mr. White and Mr. Orange.
  • Strawman Has a Point: Mr. Pink had the right idea in that the gang should have found another location the minute the heist went bad. Even if the undercover cop scenario wasn't a factor the level of carnage the gang made to escape would no doubt leave a trail to their hideout.
  • The Woobie: Mr. Orange and Marvin Nash.
  • They Copied It, So It Sucks: Reservoir Dogs is considered Tarantino's first great work but some people loathe this movie for the similarities between it and City of Fire, even calling it a complete rip-off as Tarantino never credited Lam. Tarantino at first denied he had seen the movie when called out on the similarities but then revealed he was actually a big fan - he even had a poster of it in his room. Many have lambasted Dogs for not being as original as its fans think and there is even an Anti-Tarantino webpage.