For how very intimate director Florian Habicht finds himself with the ensemble that makes Pulp, his documentary feature, Pulp: A Film About Life, Death and Supermarkets feels oddly distant. It is why that occurs that feels more important than anything else. Band members in a state of shellshock, warmly coming together for a return tour that ends in their hometown. Emotions, naturally, run high. But emotions occur in different ways. Jarvis Cocker and company do not break down into tears, they seem almost happy to see it come to a close, the tidying up at a close. That does not fit what Habicht hopes to find, so he ventures further, into the heart of Sheffield, only to find that everyone else feels much the same.
Loving music that was conceived before I was seems to be this passing hobby of mine. Friends and family will of course be horrified at my love of Britpop, but then I am aghast and fearful of their love for the Gerry Cinnamon’s and Lewis Capaldi’s of this world. One of the key downsides to a love for old music is that, well, the touring has dried up. Most have died or retired, but one or two are hanging on in there, hoping to kindle a nostalgic fanbase who are demanding, crying and shouting out for a reunion tour of some sort. Pup – Reading 2011 is one such response, to the sudden surge of rose-tinted Britpop memories, only a few years after Oasis had been shot down like the lead zeppelin it was and Blur had bounced back with a sudden reunion. It was inevitable that the best of the Britpop four would tour again.
When I first watched this documentary about four years ago, I can remember loving it in its entirety. The work of documentarian Florian Habicht, in my mind, had brought to life a concert and culture I had no idea I loved, a mesmerising piece of film that kindled a love for all things Pulp. Upon further rewatches and an expanse in musical taste, I’ve found I had more than a few doubts about Pulp: A Film About Life, Death and Supermarkets, a documentary that looks to encapsulate the impact Pulp had on Sheffield and their people, all the while showcasing their farewell concert in their hometown.