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Director Quentin Tarantino’s stunning debut movie is a gruesome tale about a jewel heist that goes disastrously wrong.

Tim Roth bleeds profusely for most of the story and Michael Madsen’s torture scene (to the strains of Steeler’s Wheel) is justly infamous.

However, there is a strong line in gallows humour, too, with Tarantino’s flair for witty dialogue well served by Harvey Keitel’s Mr White and Steve Buscemi’s Mr Pink (‘Why can’t we pick our own colours?’), while there’s some standout work, too, from veteran Lawrence Tierney, as the bulky crime boss, and Chris Penn, as his son.

Definitely not for the easily shocked, this is devastatingly cynical stuff, but it is also a perfect showcase for both its director and stars.