Big day for Pulp Fiction. The US Library of Congress will be adding it to the country’s National Film Archive in recognition of the film’s “great cultural, historic or aesthetic significance.” Pulp, along with 24 other film classics will be preserved for generations to come. This brings the total number of films in the registry to 625. The Librarian of Congress, James H. Billington, talked about the significance of adding these films.
The National Film Registry stands among the finest summations of more than a century of extraordinary American cinema. This key component of American cultural history, however, is endangered, so we must protect the nation’s matchless film heritage and cinematic creativity.
The official selection blurb states, “Quentin Tarantino’s violent Mobius strip of stories involving low-lifes whose intersecting narratives and quotable dialogue became a cultural game-changer.”
Congratulations, Pulp Fiction. You deserve the preservation and recognition because, afterall, you are the definitive movie of the ’90′s! Well, or are you? [reading today's Esquire headline] “PULP FICTION ISN’T THE DEFINITIVE ’90S MOVIE. IT DEFINES US RIGHT NOW.“
The article first declared Dazed and Confused “the definitive film of Generation X” and has since retracted the statement due to editor and fan demand. Here’s what the author, Stephen Marche had to say.
The results are in, the masses have spoken, and I am wrong. A couple weeks ago, I claimed that Dazed and Confused was the definitive film of Generation X, my editors largely disagreed, and we put the matter to the people. They have decided (voting closed yesterday), overwhelmingly, that the definitive movie of the nineties was Pulp Fiction.
Marche agrees with the fans – yet he doesn’t…
It was self-consciously of the moment, a postmodern film: Its plot structure looped into and out of the present, and constantly referenced other eras and periods as if it were writing a dissertation on Jean Baudrillard’s theory of simulacra….The odd fusion of high art and trash is what made Pulp Fiction so unique. And its uniqueness is why, no matter what any poll says, I cannot see Pulp Fiction as the most definitive movie of the nineties.
Marche insists Pulp defines us now – and after reading his theory, he may be on to something.
People fill their days with talk about waffles and forgotten television shows and Hawaiian burger joints until their heads are blown off. Terrorism and drone warfare and financial catastrophe and poker share exactly that same narrative structure — everything is drab and unexceptional until everything explodes. In other words, Pulp Fiction was a film about the future that was just about to arrive.
Pulp Fiction was the best film of the decade, without doubt. But the definitive movie about Generation X is still Dazed and Confused, with its combination of nostalgia and phony rebellion. Pulp Fiction is the perfect movie for right now.
OK fans – weigh in!
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