The film I’m reviewing here is a film starring Michael Caine which happens to be directed by Mike Hodges. It’s also a film I’ve never seen before which is kind of strange as Michael Caine is indeed one of my favourite actors. Arrow Video just released Pulp back in December and its had a brand new 2K restoration so hopefully it looks fabulous, time to find out. So without further ado here’s my Pulp Blu-ray Review.
- Pulp Blu-ray Review (1972)
- Running Time: 108 Mins
- UK Rating 12
- Released By Arrow Video
- Blu-ray Released: 18 December 2017
Michael Caine plays writer Mickey King a novelist known under many names and mainly for churning out low brow violent thrillers with a strong sexual theme. One such title is My Gun Is Long should give the general idea.
King is given the opportunity to ghost-write the autobiography of a mystery well known celebrity that has connection to the gangster side of life.
Style / Direction
The film is not only directed by Mike Hodges but he also wrote it as well. On the cinematography side of things that’s taken care of by Ousama Rawi.
First off I should say that Pulp is a well make film set entirely on location in Malta. This makes for some excellent locations and gives the film a more stylized look and feel.
Of course you may be more familiar with another of Mike Hodges films that came out the year earlier and also starred Michael Caine, Get Carter. The two films feel complete opposites in tone however.
Caine also looks completely different with a longer hair style and dark glasses. The film is also narrated by Michael Caine which adds to the experience even if what he is saying bears little in common to the pictures we are viewing. This is after all a black comedy and also a very strange and weird film I struggle to categorise.
Music / Audio Effects
The music is provided by George Martin and certainly suits the mood and tone of this black comedy.
Acting / Characters
Michael Caine makes for easy watching in this rather strange and confusing story. As I mentioned earlier Caine narrates the film to great effect.
Mickey Rooney plays Preston Gilbert a kind of a big fish with his hand firmly into the dodgy crime side of life.
Normally I’d describe the characters in detail but with Pulp I won’t as I really do think its best not to have any preconceived ideas, trust me this is one very strange film. What I will say is that everyone puts in good performances which plays nicely into this black comedy.
- Michael Caine as Mickey King
- Mickey Rooney as Preston Gilbert
- Lionel Stander as Ben Dinuccio
- Lizabeth Scott as Princess Betty Cippola
Conclusion – Pulp Film Review
Having never watched Pulp before I found it to be an incredibly outlandish film but one I would urge film fans to take a look at. There are several times you will say to yourself “what the hell is going on”. I am however kind of glad films like this were made and would really like to have seen the pitch to the money men that green lit the project.
Pulp is not a very easy film to describe or pigeonhole and is probably why it remains a forgotten about cult classic. The distributors apparently didn’t get it either and despite high critical praise struggled to find an audience upon release. Thankfully with this new Blu-ray release from Arrow Video many more people will discover this rather strange and confusing dark comedy.
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Pulp Blu-ray Review
The picture quality for the most part is outstanding and only drops on a few scenes which are more to do with the film noise/grain the film was shot in. There are a couple of those one in which the steam in the room doesn’t look to great with the film noise whilst there are a few outdoor scenes that look a little too noisy. Again I put this down to the film type used rather than a bad restoration. With all that said there are only a couple of scenes that last for a few seconds. The image is clear of any annoying dirt marks and the colours are vibrant.
On the extras front there’s interviews with writer/director Mike Hodges along with other people from behind the scenes all of which provide interesting facts and opinions into the making of this cult classic.
Overall I’d say Arrow Video’s Pulp Blu-ray release is very good from both the image quality and the extras front.
- Writer/Director Mike Hodges Interview (18 mins)
- Director of Photography Ousama Rawi Interview (9 mins)
- Assistant Director John Glen Interview (5 mins)
- Interview with son of producer Michael Klinger (6 mins)
- Original Trailer
- Image Gallery
- Reversible Sleeve
On to my movie rating for Pulp (1972)
- Movie Rating: WELL WORTH WATCHING
- Blu-ray Picture: VERY GOOD
- Extras: EXCELLENT
Pulp (1972) is available now on Blu-ray.
For those of you yet to see the film I’ll leave you with a little taster…
Clip may not be representative of the Blu-ray version
So that’s Pulp Blu-ray review, if you have any thoughts on this film you can leave them in the comment section below:
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Pulp Blu-ray Review (1972)
Director(s): Mike Hodges
Actor(s): Michael Caine, Mickey Rooney, Lionel Stander, Lizabeth Scott
Genre: Black Comedy, Thriller
- Movie Rating
- Blu-ray Picture Rating
Pulp is rather strange and confusing dark comedy that makes for compelling viewing. Arrow Video’s new Blu-ray release is exceptional.