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New Escapist Column! On the Morality Plays that Ground Quentin Tarantino’s “Reservoir Dogs” and “Pulp Fiction”…

I published a new In the Frame piece at The Escapist this evening. Yesterday was Thanksgiving and Christmas is fast approaching, so it seemed like as good a time as any to talk about the heartwarming morality of director Quentin Tarantino.

Tarantino arrived in the early nineties as something of a provocateur, and caused no shortage of outrage among older and more traditional audiences. One of the more frequent criticisms thrown at Tarantino suggested that the director was nihilistic, that he presented worlds without meaning or sense beyond violence and chaos. While this might superficially appear to be true in that many of Tarantino’s films feature both violence and chaos, it fundamentally misunderstands the director.

On the contrary, Tarantino is arguably one of America’s most morally conscious filmmakers. His films present characters with worlds in which arbitrary forces sweep through their lives, reflecting the reality of living in a world outside of an individual’s control. However, many of Tarantino’s protagonists react to that chaos by fashioning their own order out of it – discerning their own meaning, constructing their own reasons. Although obscured by Tarantino’s preference for non-linear structure, his stories are often miniature morality plays.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

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