Quentin Tarantino's Allusion In Pulp Fiction

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Pulp Fiction is a stylistically provocative film designed to amuse and impress the most well-versed film connoisseurs. Through allusion, Quentin Tarantino boasts his wide array of trivia knowledge regarding pop culture and the cinematic universe. Tarantino frequently references John Travolta’s acting career by drawing connections to Grease and Saturday Night Fever. He also characterizes Butch through an association with Terry Malloy from On the Waterfront. However, these allusions are not simply braggadocious for they affect one’s overall viewing experience. To paraphrase Polan, getting the reference becomes the determining factor in whether one likes or dislikes the movie. And if one knows a reference, it subsequently affects how he perceives the film. Would frequent…show more content…
Knowledge of Marlon Brando’s role in On the Waterfront further characterizes Butch and creates an insight that is otherwise less developed. From allusions used to catalyze detachment and remembrance to those used to characterize, Tarantino’s references create an unorthodox viewing experience, leaving the movie buffs mesmerized and the casual viewers anesthetized. Whether Tarantino is boasting his ability to transform a musical actor into an Oscar nominee or simply looking to amuse, his allusions to Travolta’ past separate the viewers from Pulp Fiction’s specific world. As Vincent and Mia pull up in front of Jack Rabbit Slim’s and enter for burgers and smoothies, the viewer cannot help but recall Grease. In a similar fashion, Sandy and Danny pull up in front of The Frosty Palace to enjoy burgers and smoothies with their friends. Though amusing, this memory trigger completely removes a viewer from the film. This allusion creates a sense of achievement. He who picks up on the reference becomes so busy reveling in his own

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