Top 100 Movie Review: No. 085 Pulp Fiction (1994)

Ranked 085 on the IMDB Top All Time 100 Movies List (Dec 2017). Watch July 2018.

Cast: Tim Roth (Pumpkin), Amanda Plummer (Honey Bunny), John Travolta (Vincent Vega), Samuel L. Jackson (Jules Winnfield), Bruce Willis (Butch Coolidge), Ving Rhames (Marsellus Wallace), Rosanna Arquette (Jody), Eric Stoltz (Lance), Uma Thurman (Mia Wallace), Christopher Walken (Captain Koons), Quentin Tarantino (Jimmie), Harvey Keitel (The Wolf)
Director: Quentin Tarantino
My rating: 9.5 / 10

Series of related ‘pulp’ fiction short stories of crime and comedy, told out of chronological order, that result in unexpected endings, unexpected deaths, sudden twists, black comedy, horrific conclusions of crime and surprising interactions and outcomes.

The movie mostly centres around Vincent Vega (John Travolta) and Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) who are hitmen with a penchant for philosophical discussions before and after committing various crimes. Their storyline is interwoven with those of their boss, gangster Marsellus Wallace (Ving Rhames); his wife and former actress, Mia (Uma Thurman); struggling boxer Butch Coolidge (Bruce Willis); master crime scene cleaner The Wolfe (Harvey Keitel) and a nervous pair of armed robbers, “Pumpkin” (Tim Roth) and “Honey Bunny” (Amanda Plummer).

What’s to Like
The mystery of the glowing briefcase, the dance contest, the amazing dialogue, the poor decision making of the characters, the brutal and unforgettable scene with Butch, Marsellus and Zed, the music, the expectation cast.

What’s not to Like

I simply love this movie. I saw this as a 20 year old who already loved movies, great dialogue, and most of the actors who appeared in this movie, so how could I not fall for this Tarantino masterpiece?

While not his first movie (that being Reservoir Dogs released in 1992) this was the first time the majority of the movie watching world would get to know the brilliant and quirky dialogue that is a feature of all Tarantino scripts which included hints of the over the top violence that would become more prominent in his future movies.

It’s easy to watch this movie multiple times and pick up new context, maybe because the story is told out of order so on rewatching the movie you notice events or understand dialogue better when later scenes that actually occurred earlier are in your memory.

Watch and enjoy.

Academy Awards

  • Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen (Quentin Tarantino , Roger Avary) – winner
  • Best Picture – nominee
  • Best Actor in a Leading Role (John Travolta) – nominee
  • Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Samuel L. Jackson) – nominee
  • Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Uma Thurman) – nominee
  • Best Director (Quentin Tarantino) – nominee
  • Best Film Editing (Sally Menke) – nominee

About Nathan

A World traveller who has so far experienced 71 countries (76 by June 2023) in this amazing world.
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