One of the crowning achievements of 90s cinema was also one of its most influential, spawning a decade's worth of shameless rip-offs, resuscitating John Travolta's dormant career, heralding the arrival of Samuel L. Jackson as a consummate actor, handing Bruce Willis one of his best parts ever, and providing enough subtext to choke Internet chat rooms and message boards for years to come (most prevalent question: What exactly is in that glowing briefcase?). Writer-director Quentin Tarantino's 1994 cause célèbre immediately became a direct challenge to creative complacency: Intoxicated on the heady fumes of its own art form, it employs a nontraditional, nonlinear form of filmmaking to interweave several vignettes all involving various members of a seedy underworld.
Pulp Fiction won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival before enjoying a successful stateside run that culminated with seven Academy Award nominations (including nods for Best Picture, Travolta, Jackson and Uma Thurman); in the year of Forrest Gump, however, it managed to only win a solitary statue for Best Original Screenplay. ****
Pulp Fiction will be screened as part of The Light Factory's Cult Movie Monday series at 8 p.m. (doors open at 7 p.m.) Jan. 30 at Actor’s Theatre, 650 E. Stonewall St. Admission and popcorn are free; a cash bar is available. More details here.