The Films of Quentin Tarantino: Watch Video Essays on Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill & More

In the ten years between Reser­voir Dogs (1992) and Kill Bill (2003), Quentin Taran­ti­no was all some film fans could talk about, and who many up-and-com­ing direc­tors idol­ized and copied. But it would take anoth­er ten years for his films to be intel­li­gent­ly dis­cussed, and it’s a sign of these times that the best essays are not in print but in video for­mat.

Matt Zoller Seitz and his col­leagues over at Indiewire’s Press Play blog led the charge with a series of 10 ‑12 minute video essays (col­lec­tive­ly called “On the Q.T.”) that explore indi­vid­ual Taran­ti­no films and his approach to film­mak­ing.

The video above is part two of the series and probes what it means to be cool in Pulp Fic­tion, how char­ac­ters cre­ate their own mytholo­gies and what hap­pens when real­i­ty con­fronts them.

If that video makes you look at Pulp Fic­tion in a deep­er way, then you’ll enjoy the first in the series, on Reser­voir Dogs. Seitz claims the film is both a col­lage of film quotes and ref­er­ences, from City on Fire to The Killing, but there’s a human heart beat­ing beneath all of it. And that’s a les­son lost on all the imi­ta­tors that came in Tarantino’s ‘90s wake, he says.

You might also want to check out this two part essay (Part 1Part 2) on Jack­ie Brown – this one craft­ed by Press Play’s Odie Henderson–which exam­ines what Taran­ti­no took from Elmore Leonard in his only adap­ta­tion to date, and what is pure QT. (Hint: It’s the cast­ing of Pam Gri­er).

The final video in the series looks at the Female Arche­type vs. the God­dess in Kill Bill. Cre­at­ed by Nel­son Car­va­jal, who uses cap­tions instead of nar­ra­tion, it’s the weak­est in the series, being long on clips and short on ideas.

But with The Hate­ful Eight on the hori­zon, the entire series will get you ready for inter­pret­ing the lat­est in his oeu­vre.

Relat­ed con­tent:

Quentin Taran­ti­no Lists His 20 Favorite Spaghet­ti West­erns, Start­ing with The Good, the Bad, the Ugly

Quentin Taran­ti­no Super­cuts Explore the Director’s Styl­ized Use of Sound, Close Ups & Cars in His Films

My Best Friend’s Birth­day, Quentin Tarantino’s 1987 Debut Film

Ted Mills is a free­lance writer on the arts who cur­rent­ly hosts the FunkZone Pod­cast. You can also fol­low him on Twit­ter at @tedmills, read his oth­er arts writ­ing at and/or watch his films here.

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