Pulp Fiction's 20th Anniversary
20 years ago Quentin Tarantino’s opus made it’s screen debut and nothing has been the same since. Tarantino solidified himself as a master writer and director, creating some of the most iconic characters to graze the silver screen – what would life be without Vincent Vega, Marcellus Wallace, or the timeless Mia Wallace? In honor of the movie making it out of its teens we’ve compiled five of our favorite scenes from Pulp Fiction (a hard task since the entire movie from start to finish is a perfect gem). Click here and read on.
Oh man, I shot Marvin in the face.
Vincent Vega (John Travolta) and Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) have recovered Marcellus Wallace’s briefcase (the much-disputed contents of which will haunt film fans for eternity) and survived a round of bullets being unleashed on them, which starts a conversation: was it divine intervention or more like “shit happens”? Mid dispute Vincent turns to Marvin, who they’ve taken hostage, to ask what his opinion is – though Marvin’s life meets its abrupt end when Vincent shoots him in the face.
I hid this uncomfortable piece of metal up my ass for two years.
We first meet Butch (Bruce Willis) as a young boy in his house. His mom tells him to stop watching TV so he can meet an important visitor – Captain Koons (Christopher Walken), a soldier who served with his dad in the army. Koons then tells a heartwarming, and very Walken-y tale (a.brupt pau…ses, et-céterá) about life in the trenches and how Butch’s dad went to great lengths to get the watch that was “his birthright” to the little boy who would become a famous boxer, by shoving it up his ass. Let’s call this scene what it is: a noble lesson in friendship, perseverance, and loyalty.
"What" ain’t no country I’ve ever heard of. They speak English in What?
Vince and Jules have some hilarious back-and-forth, discussing filthy animals, divine intervention, and the sensuality of foot massages, but when they get down to business they are downright fucking terrifying. On their journey to retrieve Marcellus’ briefcase they play two roles: the scary silent type (Vincent) and the very scary, very loud type (Jules). This scene, during which Jules eats a Big Kahuna burger and shoots “flock of seagulls” in front of Brett, is one of the most iconic scenes in movie history. Let’s be fair, if Samuel L. Jackson was yelling at us and asking us if our boss looked like a bitch we would be stuttering worse than Brett.
Whose motorcycle is this?
It’s a chopper baby.
We had a hard time choosing between this scene and the scene were Butch is in Zed’s store and wonders how to save Marcellus, going from weapon to weapon until settling on a Hatori Hanzo sword. However, the inimitable cool that is Bruce Willis can be summed up in this scene, during which he returns to the motel to pick up his pot-belly loving French girlfriend. Butch left to get his watch (yeah, the ass watch) in Fabienne’s Honda and, after a series of unfortunate events, comes back to whisk her away in a dead man’s chopper.
Now I wanna dance, I wanna win. I want that trophy, so dance good.
The obvious número uno is one of the most epic dance scenes of all time. Vincent Vega is on a “work date” with Mrs. Mia Wallace (Uma Thurman), the latter of which chooses to dine at Jack Rabbit Slim’s – a kitschy albeit magical 50s themed restaurant, decked out with drive-in car tables and Buddy Holly waiters. After discussing awkward silences, $5 milkshakes, and a brief pause for Mia to “powder her nose,” the restaurant announces a twist contest. What happens next is cinematic history: John Travolta’s über suave dancing, mixed with the beauty of Uma Thurman’s crazy antics create instant cinematic history. We’re jealous and ravished and excited all at once.
Celebrate Pulp Fiction’s 20th anniversary with a midnight screening at Nitehawk this weekend