There's not a filmmaker alive quite like Quentin Tarantino. His movies are packed with a flourish and flair that's unlike any other artist in the business. He doesn't make that many films, but the ones he does are packed with witty dialog, insane action set pieces, and an overall sense of glee. One of the best elements about his films are the characters, who feel so life-like and fleshed out. And not just the main characters, either - Tarantino bit players are every bit as important to the story and have just as much depth of character.
It doesn't matter if a character is a lead or only in the film for a few lines. Everyone matters. In fact, those who play small roles in Tarantino movies often provide the audience or main characters with crucial information or motivation. This list highlights all the actors and actresses with small roles in Tarantino films and why they make their respective movies practically masterpieces. Vote up your choice for the best bit players in Tarantino films, even though it might be hard to choose between them.
Christopher Walken strolls into Pulp Fiction for a silly, very pivotal, scene. In a flashback, he plays Captain Koons, who gives young Butch (Bruce Willis) his father's watch, while also explaining how many asses it was hidden in before coming to Butch. Hearing Koons describe the circumstances by which the ass watch came to Butch explains why he would go to such great lengths to get it back later in the film.
Film: Pulp Fiction
Actor: Christopher Walken
Pulp Fiction's Brett (Franky Whaley) is one of the classic bit players of all time. His jittery, anxious, petrified demeanor is the perfect opposite to Jules Winfield's confident dominance, and their banter gives rise to the classic Ezekiel 25.17 monologue and one of the great back-and-forths in Tarantino's oeuvre:
Jules: What does Marsellus Wallace look like?
Jules: What country are you from?
Brett: What? What? Wh - ?
Jules: "What" ain't no country I've ever heard of. They speak English in What?
Jules: English, motherf*cker, do you speak it?
Film: Pulp Fiction, Alien
Actor: Frank Whaley, Harry Dean Stanton
Before Michael Fassbender took the world by storm, he played a small, but very vital, part in Inglourious Basterds, Lt. Archie Hicox, a British officer sent undercover as a German. Hicox realizes he's going to die once his ruse is discovered, but remains calm to the very end, switching from German to English before the great shoot out, saying, "Well, if this is it, old boy, I hope you don't mind if I go out speaking the King's."
Interestingly, Fassbender was born in Germany and speaks the language flawlessly - he had to affect a non-native accent while speaking German in the film.
Film: Inglourious Basterds
Actor: Michael Fassbender
When Vincent Vega accidentally shoots Marvin in the face in Pulp Fiction, he and Jules are forced to turn to Jules's old friend Jimmie Dimmick, played by Tarantino himself. Clad in a red bath robe, Jimmie reluctantly helps the gangsters, worried his wife, Bonnie, will come home and discover gangsters doing all kinds of gangster sh*t involving a headless corpse and a car filled with blood and brains. Jimmie's fear over The Bonnie Situation induces a state of perpetual anxiety, putting a hilarious spin on noir tropes - a bunch of gangsters terrified by the idea divorce and the fury of women.
Film: Pulp Fiction
Actor: Quentin Tarantino