To say that Quentin Tarantino revels in exploitation is not an insult. One can exploit for one’s own gain as well as for the sake of a work. In ‘Pulp Fiction,’ Tarantino exploits everything there is to exploit. He exploits a wallet. He exploits a briefcase. He exploits running shorts. He even exploits John Travolta! He takes these images and figures–which aren’t real by the film’s end, having become refigured by his crazed imagination–and milks them for whatever he thinks their particular power might be. And afterwards, the images, people, actions acquire a rare charge, possibly symbolic, possibly merely electric–the kind of electricity generated when a director reaches out and touches the surface of the viewer’s imagination. And for this purpose he uses… the
close-up shot. Mark Fraser’s video montage shows us these close-ups in detail and, seen this way, their purpose becomes abundantly clear and immanent.