A whirlwind of a filmmaker who draws acclaim and controversy in equal measure, Quentin Tarantino’s portfolio of hits has been largely defined by its profanities-heavy, left-field dialogue; punchy tracks; wide shots; and non-linear narratives. But, as denoted by Marsellus Wallace’s marigold turtleneck in Pulp Fiction and Ordell Robbie’s Kangol in Jackie Brown, the auteur’s fine use of costuming is as integral to his signature style as the smattering of blood that seems to streak its way into every one of his features.
Below, we cover Tarantino’s most stylish, best-dressed characters, from an ear-cutting criminal in a slick two-piece to a washed-out frontman in some suave eveningwear…
Mr. Blonde, Reservoir Dogs
A staple uniform throughout the Tarantino universe, the black suit has been famously shouldered by Vincent Vega and Jules Winnfield in Pulp Fiction, as well as the entire Crazy 88 ensemble in Kill Bill – but the director first utilised the two-piece in his debut feature, Reservoir Dogs, a film whose opening credits sees Harvey Keitel and his cadre walking the streets in their skinny, monotone getup. Though almost every character is identically dressed, we’re particularly drawn to Mr. Blonde’s ensemble as it drapes over his tall, almost monstrous figure, adding a sinister elegance to a hard-edged character who’s central to one of the most savage scenes in cinema history.
Paul Smith tailored-fit wool suit
Drake’s silk tie
Emma Willis cotton shirt
The Bride, Kill Bill
It’s well documented that Uma Thurman was long Tarantino’s muse, an actor whose renown blossomed from her role as Pulp Fiction’s twisty-turny Mia Wallace. Just under a decade later, Thurman joined the director’s cast once again, taking up the lead role, dubbed ‘The Bride’, in the revenge classic Kill Bill. A choppy film of several sequences and subplots, its epic set-play arrives during a bloodied fight scene when Thurman, equipped with a Bruce Lee-influenced yellow tracksuit that’s sharper than the Hattori Hanzō sword she wields, takes on the Japanese underworld before a one-to-one showdown with O-Ren Ishii, her former colleague turned Yakuza boss.
Mr. P cotton jacket
Sunspel classic t-shirt
Thom Browne striped wool sweater
Butch Coolidge, Pulp Fiction
Butch by name and rugged by style, Bruce Willis’s watch-protecting protagonist stands out from Pulp Fiction‘s elaborate rogue’s gallery due to his pared-back, throwback attire that has an air of James Dean about it. First introduced in the film as a retired boxer who throws his last fight, his off-duty, punching-above-its-weight look comprises a Schott suede bomber jacket, white t-shirt and washed jeans – a timeless, all-Americana look that you may want to consider when Spring finally arrives.
Ralph Lauren suede bomber jacket
Uniform Standard cotton t-shirt
Loro Piana jeans
Lt. Aldo Raine, Inglourious Basterds
Though Tarantino has collaborated with some of Tinseltown’s biggest hitters, he has recently gone on the record to label Brad Pitt as a special breed of actor and an indescribable talent comparable to “starshine”. As the leader of a fascism-hunting pack that specialises in the “killin’ business”, Pitt’s appearance in Inglorious Basterds is remembered for his cock-handed Italian, a penchant for scalping, and a robust wardrobe of thick-wool coats – his Giorgio Armani tux, however, is a lesson in simplicity and tailored proportions and is done out in a bright, heavenly hue that further emphasises Pitt’s own celestial quality.
Ralph Lauren dinner jacket
Turnbull & Asser bow tie
Cheaney Oxford shoes
Cliff Booth, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
In his next role under Tarantino’s direction, Pitt went from hell-bent war hero to the aged and downbeat stuntman Cliff Booth in the 2019 three-hour epic Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. A colourful love letter to the film industry, it’s a feature that is given a spirited feel thanks to outfits in heavily saturated browns and mustard yellows, big lapels, and boho aesthetics, but within the kaleidoscopic mix of hues, it is Pitt’s double-denim that draws the eye most: neither lightly washed or dark enough to sap out the colour from the room, it has a rich quality that contrasts beautifully with Hollywood’s golden landscape.
Levi’s trucker jacket
Ray Ban aviator sunglasses
Benedict Raven t-shirt
Rick Dalton, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Washed-up actor Rick Dalton, played by Leonardo DiCaprio in his most carefree role since Wolf of Street, often turns to his stunt double Cliff Booth for advice, fearing that he’s a has-been who’s now been relegated to the dregs of the casting list. “You’re Rick f*ckin’ Dalton. Don’t you forget it,” Booth exclaims back in one scene. Indeed, although Dalton’s confidence in himself may wane, his clothes throughout breathe an air of assurance, as embodied by his iconic tan leather jacket that only a leading man could pull off – but, of all the wears showcased, it is his silk dressing gown that we endorse most, the ultimate downtime, out-of-office essential to help cocoon any fragile soul through the blues of January.
New & Lingwood dressing gown
Sirplus dressing gown
Hamilton + Hare robe
Want more cinematic style? Here are 7 suiting lessons to learn from Robert De Niro in Casino…
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