Michael Caine, Mickey Rooney, Lionel Stander, Lizabeth Scott, Nadia Cassini, Dennis Price, Al Lettieri, Leopoldo Trieste, Amerigo Tot, Roberto Sacchi, Giulio Donnini, Joe Zammit Cordina, Luciano Pigozzi
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY
At first glance, Pulp might seem to be an odd way for writer/director Mike Hodges and actor Michael Caine to follow up their overwhelming success with 1971's Get Carter. Pulp sort of reverses Caine's role, more target than the one targeted, and lacks the coolness Get Carter and replaces it with a darker, at times more comical presentation the proved a little more challenging for audiences when it was first released than would be true now given one's ability to watch the film without the baggage of having watched Get Carter first. While Get Carter was a runaway success, Pulp was a box-office flop when first released. It's a film that has attracted a bit of a cult following in recent years as a fresher audience seems to be more in touch with what Hodges was going for and what Caine delivered quite well.
In the film, Caine plays a writer of pulp who flees the family life in favor of a Meditteranean existence where he aspires to a life of success and sex, neither of which he seems to find in abundance. He finds a gig ghostwriting the exploits of a genuine Hollywood tough guy played by Mickey Rooney, a gig that soon enough finds both he and Rooney defending themselves from mob heavies who don't take kindly to having their secrets revealed.
George Martin contributes the film's score, a spry and energetic composition that doesn't really fit with the story but stands on its own quite nicely. The tone here is vastly different from Get Carter, at times immensely unsatisfying yet seemingly intentional in a way that isn't always easy to understand. While it's a tad cliche' to say, Pulp feels like it has a place within Hollywood's history of misunderstood films and deserves much greater acclaim than it ever really received. Kudos to the fine folks at Arrow Films for presenting the film here in a mighty fine, high quality package that gives the film the love it always has deserved.
- Brand new 2K restoration from original film elements, supervised and approved by director of photography Ousama Rawi, produced by Arrow Films exclusively for this release
- High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
- Original 1.0 mono sound
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
- Brand-new interview with writer-director Mike Hodges
- Brand-new interview with director of photography Ousama Rawi
- Brand-new interview with assistant director John Glen
- Brand-new interview with Tony Klinger, son of producer Michael Klinger
- Original theatrical trailer
- Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Nathanael Marsh
FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Collector’s booklet containing new writing by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic