Author Topic: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?  (Read 5921 times)

1SO

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2016, 07:05:49 PM »

And the color of Marvin's skin has nothing to do with these events. It's not any sort of comment on race. It's the wild part of the Bonnie Situation story.


Why do you get (or Verbals) get to say this?

I don't want to distract from my main point of the thread and focus primarily on race, but why does the race not matter? None of Tarantino's films take place in a post-racial world. Pulp Fiction is FULL of conversations on race and even displays acts of blatant racism. So why does this get a free pass?

Why do I get to say this? Such strange phrasing. I'm saying if Marvin was played by a white guy or an Asian it wouldn't change the tone of the scene at all. If Jonah Hill played Marvin, my reaction would be exactly the same. I wouldn't for a moment think that Tarantino was making this about overweight people. It's about getting the pie in the face, not whose face gets the pie.

My one racial problem with the film is that Tarantino's character flings about the 'N' word in front of Jules and Jules doesn't say a thing about it. I know at the time Tarantino said he was trying to take the power away from the word, but it appears that he's changed his position since he now uses it liberally to make the viewer uncomfortable.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2016, 07:08:20 PM by 1SO »
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Teproc

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2016, 08:12:17 PM »
Tarantino's character (Jimmy) is a dick. Jules does react to it IIRC, though subtly : he's clearly annoyed by Jimmy, but holds it in because he knows it's a... well, sticky situation, and he's a professional, unlike Vincent.

Marvin's race never seemed particularly relevant to the scene to me either, but what do I know.
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Totoro

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2016, 11:55:05 PM »
I think it's odd that someone can so easily say,

Quote
And the color of Marvin's skin has nothing to do with these events.

Then why was a black man chosen?

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #13 on: January 26, 2016, 11:59:50 PM »
Because he's a good actor? Because he's friends with QT? Because he read well in the audition? Because QT wanted to make questionable jokes (in a later scene)?
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1SO

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #14 on: January 27, 2016, 01:15:29 AM »
There are a number of reasons, but you're like a dog with a bone insisting that your take is the only one possible, even though it's an angle that goes against the tone of the sequence. You're dead set that Tarantino cast a black man as Marvin because he's a racist and thought we would all get a huge laugh watching this black man get gunned down by John Travolta. And we did, which only shows how horrible we all are as people.

Why did Ozu insist on casting Japanese actors in his films? Certainly the domestic situations he presented were universal. Why keep such a limited focus? Clearly Ozu only liked to work with Japanese people because he hated all other races and believed only the Japanese understand family dynamics and traditions.
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verbALs

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2016, 02:46:36 AM »
I'm interested for Totoro to expand on the phrase "post racial world" if he cares to. I wonder what that world would look like. Also if he could clarify whether he feels the post racial world already exists, if only in some parts of the world or whether it is still a concept.

Since race, culture and history are so inextricably linked how would a post racial world observe the fascinations of culture without reference to the race involved. As an example, the roots of blues music in slavery. Hopefully the post racial still allows that conversation because to do otherwise would depower that particular art. Would a black man have to ignore his own history in a post racial world? In a post gender world would a writer be derided for insisting on writing about the female condition; spoiling the harmony?

I had an unanswered question wondering just how delicate people want to get on this subject. It appears some want to be very delicate. I think we want a post discrimination world. That would seem the real aim. Tarantino wants to explore aspects of racism in his films. It's art. It's boring art because he has said it so often by now. Pulp Fiction was the first time he was saying it substantively so there is some power in there. He hasn't really said much more since then on the subject. Just the same thing. It was provoking initially and that is a vital component of art. It wasn't common to hear it back then in film. If you listened to rap it was old hat by the time Pulp Fiction came round. Spike Lee is infinitely more interesting on this subject than Tarantino in his films. It doesn't matter at all whether I find Tarantino boring now but I'm beginning to see how valuable he is if his films provoke the argument and highlight the delicacy that is being brought to the argument.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2016, 03:25:37 AM by verbALs »
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Dave the Necrobumper

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #16 on: January 27, 2016, 03:37:54 AM »
I think it's odd that someone can so easily say,

Quote
And the color of Marvin's skin has nothing to do with these events.

Then why was a black man chosen?


Stupid white guy kills defenceless black guy.

Dave the Necrobumper

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #17 on: January 27, 2016, 03:50:55 AM »
Actual Totoro, you asked why was he black, based on all the events around the character, what race should he have been and why?

Totoro

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #18 on: January 27, 2016, 04:57:31 AM »
There are a number of reasons, but you're like a dog with a bone insisting that your take is the only one possible, even though it's an angle that goes against the tone of the sequence. You're dead set that Tarantino cast a black man as Marvin because he's a racist and thought we would all get a huge laugh watching this black man get gunned down by John Travolta. And we did, which only shows how horrible we all are as people.

Why did Ozu insist on casting Japanese actors in his films? Certainly the domestic situations he presented were universal. Why keep such a limited focus? Clearly Ozu only liked to work with Japanese people because he hated all other races and believed only the Japanese understand family dynamics and traditions.

This is the single meanest post you've ever posted towards me. :(

I don't want to say Tarantino is anything. I'm simply asking why. And you're telling me to stop asking the question.

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Re: Anyone else find the Marvin story in Pulp Fiction unfunny?
« Reply #19 on: January 27, 2016, 08:52:58 AM »
You're not "simply asking why". You've already answered the question for yourself and are asking why we don't see the racism. I'm saying there was no racial agenda.

And this will be my last post in this thread since you feel the debate has turned into a personal attack.
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