Journalist and film critic, Charlie Gates designed a scientific formula to determine the best film director in the world. So far he's tested Oliver Stone, Tim Burton and Quentin Tarantino. Gates calls this the Picture Palace Auteur Meter, or PPAM for short. Granted, his formula includes some personal opinions so we're not sure how "scientific" this really is but it's still a fun take on the ongoing debate.

Here's the formula:


Gates breaks it all down for us by feeding Tarantino into his numbers machine. We start with QT's back catalogue:

2012 Django Unchained - 2009 Inglourious Basterds - 2007 Death Proof - 2004 Kill Bill: Vol. 2

2003 Kill Bill: Vol. 1 - 1997 Jackie Brown - 1994 Pulp Fiction - 1992 Reservoir Dogs

That is eight films in 20 years, not very prolific. Just for the pedants, I didn't include Four Rooms because he only directed part of it and this is my machine, so bugger off.

His filmography gives QT a Longevity rating (Lo) of 20. One point for every productive year as a director. Then we calculate his productivity rating (Pr) by dividing the number of films by the Lo rating and multiplying that figure by 100.

Pr = 40

Then we take Tarantino's total box office takings ($592,988,249) and divide that by the total number of films to find his average box office takings - $74,123,531. Tidy.

This is divided by 1,000,000 to create his box office rating.

Bo = 74.12

Then, we take the average critical score for a Tarantino film on Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes, both websites that take a lot of film reviews and aggregate them into a single score.

So the average Tarantino movie gets 76.875 per cent on Metacritic and 96.5 per cent on Rotten Tomatoes, a very high rating.

Mc = 76.875

To = 96.5

Then I assess Tarantino's oeuvre to give my average rating of his films.


Django Unchained (100) Inglourious Basterds (100) Jackie Brown (100) Pulp Fiction (100) Reservoir Dogs (100)


Death Proof (80)


Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (60) Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (60)





Then I add all my ratings together and divide by the total number of films to find a Me rating of 87.5.

Me - 87.5

Here are all the values for the formula:

Lo - No of years between first film and latest = 20

Pr - Films per year divided by productive years x 100 = 40

Bo - Average box office per film - $74,123,531 divided by 1m = 74.12

Mc - Metacritic average career rating per film- 76.875

To - Rotten Tomatoes average rating per film - 96.5

Me - My average rating for a Tarantino film - 87.5

And here is how they look in the final formula, complete with Tarantino's PPAM rating.


So, here is the PPAM Index so far:

The PPAM Index

1. Quentin Tarantino - 76.40

2. Tim Burton - 68.17

3. Oliver Stone - 59.52

My machine says QT is better than Tim Burton and Oliver Stone. I agree with the machine. How about you?

By the way, over the next few months I'm going to take about 100 directors and feed them through the machine in one go so we can get a comprehensive PPAM Index and see what monstrous results emerge. Should be fun.

To follow more of Gates's PPAM, track him on The Picture Palace.

Feel the sudden urge to watch QT's filmography that includes hours of bonus material? If so, check out Tarantino XX now! This box set has also been nominated for the Home Media Magazine Awards - vote now for Tarantino XX to win Best Box Art, Best Packaging and Best Catalog Collection.

And don't forget to wish QT a Happy 50th Birthday. We're wrapping this up by Friday, March 22 at 12:00 PM ET so get writing and share with your friends!Click here and write in the comments section.