I’m an aspiring filmmaker. Like every filmmaker out there, I have a lengthy list of films that have inspired me along the way. This series will examine twelve of the films that changed the way I looked at movies forever. Films that have greatly influenced the filmmaker I hope to become someday…
My favorite filmmakers come up with their own stories and usually write the screenplays themselves.
This is where Quentin Tarantino shines.
I definitely love his movies. Pulp Fiction, Resevoir Dogs and Inglourious Basterds are among my all time favorites.
Yet it’s his unbelievable command of the screenwriting craft that inspires me.
I love original tales and when I saw Pulp Fiction, I saw one of the most original and entertaining movies ever produced.
Pulp Fiction literally changed the way people structured their movies. Since it was released, countless writers have stated their new scripts have a ‘Pulp Fiction Style’.
Broken time lines became common place once Tarantino made it cool.
Everything he does is cool. Pulp Fiction is cool.
It’s impossible not to be impressed by the simple nature of the story and the complex way it’s presented. As a screenwriter, it made me pay more attention to the way I structure my screenplays. Not to make them more like Tarantino’s films but to truly ask myself:
“How can I make this better?”
It’s an important question and a lesson I’m thankful I learned. You have to constantly ask yourself if there are ways to make the story better. You have to create new elements that raise the bar. Screenwriting exists eventually to entertain an audience.
Pulp Fiction definitely entertains and it’s entirely thanks to Quentin’s incredible imagination and vision. The risks he takes truly shows the confidence he has in his knowledge of film.
Take the brief case for example. Inside is a strange orange glowing light.
I have no idea what that is.
Yet somehow, Tarantino was secure enough to leave that information out. It’s fascinating to watch. It’s seems simple but leaving out information like that could back fire so easily.
It’s a testament to his immense knowledge of movies. The man is an encyclopedia.
His attention to detail literally changed the way I looked at my own work forever. I now consider every little detail I can. Every line in a screenplay should accomplish multiple things. Tarantino taught me that a single line of dialogue can move the story forward, tell us about the characters and be entertaining.
I feel like writing now just thinking about all of the genius lines in Pulp Fiction.
Countless people have studied and written about his skills as a writer and director. I just happy I have legendary movies like Pulp Fiction to turn to when I need inspiration.