LET’S talk about neo-pulp.
It’s a genre of writing that has inspired us in our films. We don’t like talking about it because we have issues with appearing pretentious. Let’s assume everyone here is an arty-farty wanker and we’re safe.
In essence neo-pulp aims to create a cool and fresh idea from crashing the cliches of different and completely unrelated genres/time periods/aesthetics together. Terry Gilliam once said the comedy comes when two ideas that shouldn’t co-exist crash together and the result is laughter.
A chap we know little about named Adam Ford has published a manifesto about neo-pulp, below are some of the ways he describes the style that speak to us and influence the films we make.
NeoPulp draws liberally from the fantastic stories of this and previous centuries, a melange of mythology and popular culture (take a bit of Godzilla, a bit of Paradise Lost, some giant robots, the sexual tension of a romance novel and the Bhagavad-Gita and mix them all together), and adds to this a “literary” understanding of characters’ motivations and emotional needs.
NeoPulp embraces the clichés of pulp writing: the naïve superscience of B-movies, the nefarious underworld criminal mastermind, the lone sheriff against a town of outlaws, the young woman torn between love for a mysterious stranger and respect for her fiancée, and the mad god bent on destruction, and examines them closely in an attempt to find – or try – something novel: a subversion, an inversion, a juxtaposition, a statement about the human condition.
NeoPulp is born of a love and admiration for the flawed nature of pulp culture; it is not an exercise in poking fun at the plot and character shortcomings that are endemic to pulp. Such things are obvious and have been done to death. Rather, NeoPulp attempts to create a real and sympathetic portrait of these bizarre and self-contradictory characters and situations.
NeoPulp takes what is great about pulp fiction – the action, the tension, the sense of adventure and danger, the exploration of strange and fascinating ideas – and combines it with what is great about contemporary fiction – sophisticated understanding of characterisation and an awareness of and a willingness to draw upon literary history.
NeoPulp is not po-faced or portentous.
NeoPulp is fun without being stupid, although whne it is stupid it’s fun.
NeoPulp is fun.
Read Adam Ford’s full manifesto here.
That’s what our end game here is, using the collision of ideas from different worlds to create OUR unique, yet also comfortably familiar, type of movies. We’re certainly not as sophisticated with it as we hope to be one day, but we churn and we learn every project.