Pulp: a Film about Life, Death & Supermarkets
"Touchingly beautiful, it’s one of the best music documentaries I’ve seen in recent years."
VangurardRed Magazine review & Florian Habicht interview
"I felt that the film was a triumph—moving, funny, sweet, eccentric—and the reaction from the audience, well, it’s the kind of thing that makes you feel like you are smiling with your heart. Two people who I spoke with were moved to tears. How many rock docs can you say that about?" - DANGEROUS MINDS REVIEW
"Jarvis Cocker describes Pulp's late-in-the-day farewell concert as a very non-rock'n'roll act of "tidying up" – resolving the loose ends of the band's somewhat unsatisfactory demise several years earlier. Fittingly, Florian Habicht's affectionate documentary tells the story of the band from the streets of Sheffield with the help of friends, family and fans, aged and youthful alike (one wears a T-shirt proclaiming: "I am a common person so fuck you"), all of whom have their own stories to tell.
A young musician who skipped psychiatric care to tune in to Cocker's 6 Music show (and who wonderfully describes D-major 7th as a "not quite happy" chord) extols the virtues of getting mugged in Sheffield, rather than London, because "in Sheffield you usually know the people who are mugging you". Elsewhere, we meet a young women's football team and a more grown-up women's singing group; Richard Hawley browses vinyl collections and fails to remember Cocker ever doing the washing-up; and people with "Jarvis" emblazoned on their pants sing along in a manner that has quite clearly helped get them through. The live performances are electrifying, all jagged elbows and brilliant pop tunes, with the band suitably assisted not by drugs and booze, but by a neatly organised display of treatments for colds, incontinence and light grazes. On the subject of fame, Cocker asserts boldly that "it didn't agree with me – like a nut allergy". Hardcore indeed."
4 stars -The Observer UK
The Guardian Critics choice. 7 June 2014
"As celebrated in Habicht’s warmly human documentary, Pulp has always been defiantly different. ...The result is a beguiling celebration of humanity"
Variety SXSW review
Pulp: A Film Which Upsets Guardian Writers for not Mocking Northerners - THE TOTALITY UK
"Pulp: A Film about Life, Death and Supermarkets is the best film that could be made about Pulp. The majority of British pop bands were eager to be seen as “one of the lads,” with a pint in one hand and a copy of Loaded magazine in the other. Not Pulp, who wholeheartedly embraced an individualistic style of pervy proletariat, outsider chic. Their lyrics are the stuff of fluttering net curtains in run-down terraced houses, chaotic and confused teenage lust and not only not fitting in, but knowing you’ll never be able to. This documentary, centring on the band’s 2012 farewell concert, grasps everything that Pulp is about. It’s less a straightforward band biography and more a sociological study of the swamp of fears, loves and passions that bubbles away under the industrially cratered landscape of Sheffield."
-We Got This Covered, UK five star review
"Like any great concert, the band saves their best for last and Habicht is on-hand to capture it in all its glory. After being tantalised with word of the strength of Cocker's performance from just about every person in Sheffield, we finally get to experience the wonder. Jarvis thrusts his way through the entire six and a half minutes of Pulp's magnum opus, 'This is Hardcore'. I died. I've been to concerts where the one song I've wanted to hear doesn't make it onto the setlist, and here, where almost no songs make the cut unedited, there is the one song I would forego all others to hear live. And Jarvis absolutely kills it. He's done his city proud." -The Cue Dot Confessions, Sydney Film Festival Review
Florian Habicht's concert movie follows Jarvis Cocker and his bandmates as they prepare to mark their 25th anniversary as Britpop royalty with a concert in their native Sheffield. Songs will be sung, stories will be told, and pies will be eaten, because the only way to fully understand Pulp is to hang out in the town that birthed the band. "Sing along with the common people" isn't just a lyric - it's a mission statement.
"A handsome cinematic homage to a unique band, a proud city and the unifying power of pop music. The group’s comeback shows felt like a triumphant lap of honor, and Habicht’s film certainly captures that feeling." -Stephen Dalton, Hollywood Reporter
"Pulp is a smash. Pulp isn't a concert film. It's a love story."
San Jose Mercury News (Austin Texas) film review by Jim Harrington
"Jarvis still gets to shine, on stage mainly, and in a wonderful moment where he reveals his personal first aid kit for all potential ailments pre-gig in the form of a packed suit bag of medicines and fixes. It’s so wonderfully Jarvis. So odd and practical and very, very un-rock & roll. There are other joys here, beyond the subjectivity of the music (which I think is amazing and the live footage makes me wish I’d seen them on this tour) but it’s not rammed home, it has to be discovered, ironically, much like the band’s music itself. Even the big hits have more going on in them than most people feel or hear. Common People is a very different beast from Roll With It – and I love Roll With It also. For example, the sequence where a group of older people sing Help The Aged in a city café is one of the most lovely and moving moments in film so far this year, staged or not. It captures the fragility and perception, craft and sensibility of the band beautifully even though they are nowhere to be seen." - Directors Notes UK Review
The Independent UK 4 stars film review
German-born New Zealander, Florian Habicht, handles his subject with artful aplomb, capturing a palpable sense of place and bottling it for all to savour, not only diehard fans. Pulp is a collaborative effort with the locals: the paper-seller, the knife-maker, kids, the old and the down at heel. - 4 stars Filmuforia review
"Berlin-born New Zealand director Florian Habicht’s portrayal of British rock band Pulp is a fascinating piece of work on all sorts of levels. For starters, it is about one of the world’s most successful groups in the mid-1990s, but, more importantly, it’s about where the band members come from, musically, physically and emotionally, and about the northern English city they call home, Sheffield."
The Jerusalem Post - by Barry Davis
"Displaying a warm affection toward the band and their hometown, the film is wonderfully nostalgic without being maudlin. Sharp, funny and interspersed with gorgeously captured live footage, "Pulp" is anything but common." AUSTIN360.COM
9/10 review from Exclaim.ca Hot Docs Toronto
"An extensively brilliant concert film." - TASTICFILM.COM
"It’s typical PULP – that witty self-deprecating humour, probably summed up by two older ladies discussing whether Jarvis is Joe Cocker’s son. And we get these little touches throughout: Jarvis changing a tyre or talking about the perils of fame (like a nut allergy apparently). But the real highlights are when Habicht gets various local groups to perform PULP’s hits. Sheffield Harmony sing Common People accapella, a dance troupe perform to Disco 2000 and, most touchingly, pensioners in a café sing Help the Aged, while reading true crime and celeb magazines. It’s a bizarrely bonkers but moving reflection on mortality, and it works."
The Hollywood News five star review
"While the temptation naturally exists to intellectualise art of such quality, a refreshingly excitable Habicht revealed at the Q&A that he actively avoids doing so with regard to his subject matter, thus leaving himself open to whatever presents itself. Considering that the world brought to life by Pulp is one of raw lived experience, it’s entirely appropriate that a film about the group would be approached in this fashion.
Pulp: a film about Life, Death and Supermarkets is a beautiful, moving and life affirming documentary which celebrates a truly unique band and the world from whence its members came. Its triumph lies in its creation of a visual document which mirrors the synthesis found in Pulp’s work."
We love life, death & supermarkets - review by Emma Hynes
The Upcoming Film Review
Rythm Circus UK review
LA Times Review
‘Pulp: a Film about Life, Death & Supermarkets' is an incredible and inventive band documentary which takes in the Sheffield band’s final(…?) UK show at the Motorpoint Arena, shot in December 2012, and a succession of small town insights from the Sheffield working classes, plus all-new band interviews. It’s a subtle retrospective on the Britpop pioneers’ highs and lows, and does well to avoid pretension via a constant stream of self-deprecating humour and brimming well of ideas. To the latter point, the realms of reality and surrealism are beautifully traversed when the band’s ‘Help the Aged’ single is performed by a choir of elder men and women in a worker’s café, tucking into their meals and daily tabloids, acting as if this is a mere everyday occurrence.
Directed by obvious-fan Florian Habicht, the feature oscillates between humour-drenched art-piece, concert film, and human interest documentary – successfully achieving resonance and effect across three categories. Most affecting are the band interviews, where all original members candidly assess fame and its inevitable downfall. Despite selling ten million records and being one of Britain’s most iconic acts of the 90s, Pulp always were outsiders, and when they finally got an invite to the big league, they didn’t quite like what they found. Ever-wry, Cocker describes his period of ‘Common People’ chart-trouncing as being ‘like a nut allergy; it just didn’t agree with me…’ ROCKFEEDBACK.COM
April 9, 2014
US Theatrical release!
OSCILLOSCOPE FORGETS THE ORANGE JUICE, JUST ORDERS THE PULP
(New York, NY) April 8, 2014—Oscilloscope Laboratories announced today that it has acquired US rights to Florian Habicht’s witty, innovative documentary PULP: A FILM ABOUT LIFE, DEATH AND SUPERMARKETS, an homage to the legendary titular band (perhaps the smartest and most charismatic in all of all Britpop), as they prepare to say farewell after 25 years of performing and 10 million albums sold. The film had its world premiere at this year’s SXSW Film Festival and will next screen at Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Film Festival. It will continue to play select festivals ahead of its release in theaters and across digital platforms.
Though culminating with the farewell concert the band played to thousands of adoring fans in their hometown of Sheffield, England, PULP is by no means a traditional concert film or rock doc. As much a testament to the band as it is to the city and inhabitants of Sheffield, PULP weaves exclusive concert footage with man-on-the-street interviews and dreamy staged sequences to paint a picture much larger, funnier, moving, and life-affirming than any music film of recent memory.
About the acquisition, O-scope’s Dan Berger and David Laub said, “We were enamored by PULP from the moment it started. As fans, we felt predisposed to appreciate it, but couldn’t have been more thrilled to experience a film that did so much more than simply showcase a band that we like. Florian proves himself as one of the great music documentarians, as he not only masterfully captures the world and music of Pulp, but gives voice to all the common people who love them and have supported them in their inspiring and unique success.
Filmmaker Florian Habicht said, “When I saw Pulp perform at Radio City in NYC exactly two years ago, I would never have dreamt I'd have my own film about them playing in cinemas in the U.S.We set out to make a film where the band isn't the centre of the universe, since this approach seemed to be in line with Pulp's own attitude to life and fame. So their home town and its inhabitants became a big part of the movie. I loved spending time in Sheffield and I loved spending time with the band, and hope that American audiences will too.”
PULP was produced by Alex Boden for Pistachio Pictures, with Hugo Heppell, Susan Jacobson, Will Clarke, Mike Runagall, Eve Gabereau and Edward Fletcher serving as Executive Producers.
The deal was negotiated by O-Scope’s Dan Berger and David Laub with Altitude Film Sales’ Mike Runagall on behalf of the producers.
About Oscilloscope Laboratories