I don't get Pulp Fiction!

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SPIDEI2_MAN__'s Avatar
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i usually get movies like that..for instance..i cracked Donnie Darko first time i saw it..Identity too...sixth sense was very predictablke to me etc etc..

but i have no idea what pulp fiction is about i need someone to just flat out tell me what this movie means or whatever



"Money won is twice as sweet as money earned."



Firstly, Donnie Darko cannot be "cracked". It's director, Richard Kelly, has said that he himself can't make sense of it. So, there you go. You're delusional.

Secondly, Pulp Fiction, like any movie, is open to various interpretations. Some people believe it's about redemption, others believe it's about nihilism, and some believe it's simply about cinematic homage.

Take your pick. Your guess is as good as anyone else's.
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SPIDEI2_MAN__'s Avatar
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i dont think you understand....theres a difference between knowing what a movie is about..and interpreting it..i dont know whaqt this movie is about its like 3 stories and they sort of kind of come together? i mean what the hell....

and by the way kelly said that he cant make sense out of some things...but his theory on the main theme of the movie is cuncurrent with mine..so im not delusional, only imaginative and open minded..so sue me.



Love, Honour, Revenge, Respect, Forgiveness... It has sooo many meanings, and touches up on so many topics. Its just... Pulp Fiction. A great, great script. Ironic how you could not "get" a film with such a wide selection of meanings.
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I am having a nervous breakdance
What I guess Spidei is talking about is that he is not getting "the point" of the film. Traditional narratives includes a beginning, plot points and conclusion to a story; in short, a murder, some clues and the answer to who did it. Pulp Fiction doesn't have a narrative like that but consists of several threads of which some are loosely tied together while some are left hanging. The story in many films are motivated by the ending, the climax of the film when all our answers are being answered. In other films, like Pulp Fiction, the story is being motivated by nothing else but the telling of the story itself. Instead of beginning, middle and end it's more like entering a state when the film begins and exiting the state when the film is over. Maybe the film would be easier to "get" if the different sub-stories were told seperately without interference from the other stories. This would of course be not only impossible since the stories are weaven into each other but it would also rob the film of its brillance. Because it is a brilliant film.
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They had temporarily escaped the factories, the warehouses, the slaughterhouses, the car washes - they'd be back in captivity the next day but
now they were out - they were wild with freedom. They weren't thinking about the slavery of poverty. Or the slavery of welfare and food stamps. The rest of us would be all right until the poor learned how to make atom bombs in their basements.



Like tears in rain...
There are plenty of theories out there about what is going on in the film. As for what Tarantino has stated, he was quite ambiguous and I think he wanted the film perceived in such a way as well. Many folks wonder what was in the attache' case and complain that it is never revealed. I see this as a stroke of genius as people are still asking about it today, and the film is more than a decade old. The case is a throwback to an old Ralph Meeker film noir, Kiss Me Deadly, and I think tarantino uses the mechanic expertly here. This also enforces the cinematic throwback theory Silver brought up.

One could also make a case for the dialogue alone carrying this film. In other words, I bet you could listen to a cassete tape of the dialogue and still be entertained. The characters are are amazing by design as well. I believe they each represent an archetype in the human psyche, but I won't bore with endless prattle about each one. I will state that this is one of the more interesting character ensembles in film IMHO.

The multiple story thread theme he uses is something else that appeared new and fresh on the cinematic horizon of the early 90s. One would find this is actually not such a new technique but the films he drew inspiration from would be a tad obscure to the average American film goer.

The fact that this script was written by Quinton while he was a video store clerk should impress on at least some level I think. The scene with the hypo going into Uma's chest had people fleeing the theatre and as Quinton said "That's good cinema".

I think becoming familiar with the term "Pulp Fiction" would help as well. Digging into the nature of the pulp medium will give you an idea as to why the material has the flavor it does.

Hope these insights helped, and I'll recommend, as I usually do, that you watch a film multiple times before passing judgement.
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Film Review by Sedai

Last edited by Sedai; 02-14-04 at 12:55 PM.



The Mad Prophet of the Movie Forums
Pulp Fiction is great. I don't really see that it's all that hard to get...I mean, what's so difficult to get about non-linear plots, or even three separate conjoined plots for that matter? Alas...you need to see Ichi the Killer and 2001. You'll love their endings.
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The plot is that Jules is Jesus but doesn't know it (botulism from eating a bad le royal with cheese). It's his second coming and he's here to spread the truth that he's no pacifist, he's a bad mutherfocker. The briefcase holds his memory and he needs it back so he can spread the truth to the masses. Harvey Keitel is the devil.
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Mother! Oh, God! Mother! Blood!
Ooops! I thought this thread was, "I don't get poop friction." I was going to congratulate the thread starter, but then I realized it's about the movie of a similar title.
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I am having a nervous breakdance
Originally Posted by LordSlaytan
The plot is that Jules is Jesus but doesn't know it (botulism from eating a bad le royal with cheese). It's his second coming and he's here to spread the truth that he's no pacifist, he's a bad mutherfocker. The briefcase holds his memory and he needs it back so he can spread the truth to the masses. Harvey Keitel is the devil.
HEIL SLAYTAN!!!



Originally Posted by Sedai
The fact that this script was written by Quinton while he was a video store clerk should impress on at least some level I think.
Regardless of where Quentin wrote it, he was still Quentin Tarantino. Getting big paychecks in Hollywood doesn't give you the temporary talent needed to write a script. What impresses me is the script, not where he wrote it. I'm also pretty certain he wrote the script in Amsterdam, the year after all of the Reservoir Dog hoopla. Hence, all of the European talk in the movie.

His friend Roger Avary went overseas to help him on the script, and ended up staying there to make his own film "Killing Zoe". This post is not meant to "attack" your statement, just correct.



SPIDEI2_MAN__'s Avatar
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Finally...im glad some people spoke up instead of the negative critisicm i got after i posted this..

But i still don't understand how bruce willis's charcter is connected to the main story??? and what about peggy sue what does her drug addiction have to do with anything?



Like tears in rain...
Originally Posted by Travis_Bickle
Regardless of where Quentin wrote it, he was still Quentin Tarantino. Getting big paychecks in Hollywood doesn't give you the temporary talent needed to write a script. What impresses me is the script, not where he wrote it. I'm also pretty certain he wrote the script in Amsterdam, the year after all of the Reservoir Dog hoopla. Hence, all of the European talk in the movie.

His friend Roger Avary went overseas to help him on the script, and ended up staying there to make his own film "Killing Zoe". This post is not meant to "attack" your statement, just correct.

Travis, no offense taken man

I was only reiterating the fact that he wrote the script in a video store. It was stated on the pulp fiction documentary, Pulp Fiction:The Facts. I know he was also working on scripts for True Romance and Natural Born Killers as well as My Best Friends Birthday. He also magaged to squeeze Res Dogs in there somewhere. He had started the whole "Three stories about one story" idea way back and it didn't (couldn't) come to fruition until Quinton got some practice under his belt. He basically said it was a project he couldn't finish until he got more experience. I may be remembering the documentary incorrectly, as it's been a bit since I watched it, but I am pretty sure this was the case...

I think we both agree though, Quinton is the ****



Like tears in rain...
Originally Posted by SPIDEI2_MAN__
Finally...im glad some people spoke up instead of the negative critisicm i got after i posted this..

But i still don't understand how bruce willis's charcter is connected to the main story??? and what about peggy sue what does her drug addiction have to do with anything?
Bruce was the character that centered around the redemption idea I think, as well as Jules. Bruce was offered a deal (by the devil?) and he took it at first but at the last minute didn't go through with it. Meanwhile he kills a man. Later in the film I believe he is put in a position where he can work towards redemption (by saving his enemy). Jules "saves" the two robbers at the end, playing into the prophet that walks the earth theme mentioned earlier in the thread (Jesus?).

Again I bring up to cinematic homage he is paying to many films here:

I mentioned the Attache' Case inspired by Kiss Me Deadly

When Marcellus is walking across the street in front of Bruce's car, the scene is shot almost exactly like a similar scene in Hitchcock's Psycho.

The cleaner, Wolf, is a character drawn off the cleaner in La Femme Nikkita, a character Keitel plays in the american remake Point of no Return (originally Jean Reno)

I have read that the Jule and Jimmy scene centered around Jimmy's wife coming home is drawn directly from a film Jules et Jim. I have not seen this film.

That said, Quinton himself has said some things are left up to the viewer to interpret and he purposely didn't try to interpret it for you.

e.g.

Things that could be in the case:

Marcellus's soul
The diamonds from Reservoir Dogs
gold
A nuclear device

As for the drug addiction, Just who is peggy sue? I remember a character named Mia overdosing.

_S

Last edited by Sedai; 02-09-04 at 02:02 PM.



Mother! Oh, God! Mother! Blood!
Originally Posted by SPIDEI2_MAN__
Finally...im glad some people spoke up instead of the negative critisicm i got after i posted this..

But i still don't understand how bruce willis's charcter is connected to the main story??? and what about peggy sue what does her drug addiction have to do with anything?
There is no "main" story. The words "pulp fiction" are in reference to the paperback books cheaply published from pulp paper. Most of the stories were crime and detective stories. Tarantino took the common themes and stories and created three stories (two hit men having second thoughts about their purpose in life; a hit man having to take out his boss' wife; a boxer winning a fight he was supposed to take a fall in). Tarantino chose to interweave the stories by making character connections through Marcelious (sp?) Wallace. He also chose to tell the stories in a non-linear manner.

Spidei2_Man, if you're looking for it all to come together as one story, you're missing part of Tarantino's intention (to pay homage to pulp fiction stories).



Messenger from Hades' Gate
Originally Posted by Mark
There is no "main" story. The words "pulp fiction" are in reference to the paperback books cheaply published from pulp paper. Most of the stories were crime and detective stories.
I couldn't have said it better myself. There is only one reason why I love Pulp Fiction as much as I do:

Samuel L. Jackson, "Say 'what' again! SAY 'WHAT' AGAIN!"

How can you not love that. . . and the whole speech on the foot massage/metric system. . . how can you not love this really off the wall film?
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Listen, you're all wrong.
Pulp Fiction is all about second chances. Think about it.
1) Vincent and Jules: The divine intervention
2) Mia: She OD'd but she got a second chance to live
3) Butch and Marcelus: Because butch helped marcelus from Z and his rapings, marcelus gave butch a second chance and told him to get out.

Now I know you're saying Vincent Dies. Yes, but that is after the divine intervention, and also, that is the day after Jules quits being a hitman.

Well, there you go



Like tears in rain...
Originally Posted by Mr. White
Listen, you're all wrong.
Pulp Fiction is all about second chances. Think about it.
1) Vincent and Jules: The divine intervention
2) Mia: She OD'd but she got a second chance to live
3) Butch and Marcelus: Because butch helped marcelus from Z and his rapings, marcelus gave butch a second chance and told him to get out.

Now I know you're saying Vincent Dies. Yes, but that is after the divine intervention, and also, that is the day after Jules quits being a hitman.

Well, there you go

Second chance is one of the themes. Most of the facts I stated earlier were either stated by Quinton himself, or can just plainly be seen. Your point in valid, but you can't tell me cinematic homage isn't a theme, as it clearly is. Also, all the examples you gave also fall under redemption.


_S



Pulp Fiction has sooo many ideas and themes and motifs running around in it, which is what is so great about it. I have seen it many, many times and pick up something new each time, and one of the coolest things that I've noticed is that a key theme is people's inability to control time. In each main story there is something to do with time: Racing against the clock to save Mia from dying, the importance that Butch places in his father's watch, and then trying to get the car cleaned before the wife gets back home. And the only character whose plots are told entirely in sequence is Jules. He is the glue that holds the movie together.
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