Film Analysis: Pulp Fiction

“You know we’re awesome… and so do we. But why? We don’t really know.”

Pulp Fiction. It’s a cult classic, and has been almost since the day it was released. It’s irreverent, violent, romantic, gritty, philosophical, and just plain weird. And it is one of the best movies in American cinema.

Blood, Guts and Witty Repartee 

Pulp Fiction is equally powerful in its dynamic visuals and instant, snappy repartee. But both of these hang upon the actors. They play their characters with such conviction and commitment, even as their situations grow continually more bizarre, that at the end you are almost convinced what you saw was real life.

Characters With Attitude

What Tarantino does so well is create characters that completely draw you in.  Take, for example, the opening restaurant scene; two cool, engaging characters prattling on about their robbery habits with such ease and confidence that by the end of their conversation you would follow them into the bank, rooting for them all the way.

Once he has you hooked with his characters and their dialogue, he is free to create almost any situation he wants to.  I for one would be enthralled watching Sam Jackson’s character sit on the toilet for at least 5-10 minutes reading a paper without saying a word, just because I know that he knows that he’s a Bad MF even when he’s taking a ****.

Immortal Scenes

You want a cult following? Make people talk about your movie. Friends have to tell their friends, “Oh my God, did you see that scene where he…?” “I KNOW, right?!”

Seize their attention. Create immortal scenes.

For instance, the scene where Christopher Walken tells young Bruce Willis about his daddy’s watch is amazing. It has been parodied and referenced millions of times. It is a part of our cultural unconscious. And it’s all because of fantastic writing and truly awesome acting.

Prattle On, Fair Poet

Try to focus on your dialogue and really develop your characters; give them well-rounded personalities that are compelling, but also flawed.  Part of the satisfaction in watching Pulp Fiction is that eventually each “badass” character we’re introduced to displays fear or vulnerability in some way, making them human and therefore more enjoyable.

Once you have strong, interesting and believable characters established, you can take them just about anywhere and keep an audience enthralled.

Food for thought,


Meme E

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