The Metamorphism of Love, MacGuffins, and Phillipe Jennings

“When you try your best, but you don’t succeed…”

If you have never lived, you will never know, what it means to love another human being. From birth to death, the bond shared between a mother and her child is unbreakable. This innate quality in a human being is essentially existential. Simply, life without love, isn’t worth living. For the relationships that each one of us share, exists a hidden bond that reciprocates a feeling of warmth, affection, and a friendship. Whether you share a bond with family, friends, or your romantic interests, love binds us together in a way that nothing else can. Therefore, throughout this semester, I was given the opportunity to explore the concept of love and its several interpretations. By thoroughly watching and exploring the other resources produced by several of Quentin Tarantino movies, I have learned much about, relationships, the development of various plot lines and MacGuffins which move the plot along. Thanks to Tarantino’s movies, I had the opportunity to delve into the deeper concepts of each film.

Through love, we share relationships; however, in order to define the concept of love, we must break it down into four main components as defined by the ancient Grecians. Essentially, the bonds of love can be categorized into four different classifications: eros, storge, agape, and philia. The Greek definition describes eros love as a sexual passion for another person, whereas philia is a form of brotherly love that is shared among equals. Also, the ancient Grecians defined storge love as love shared between a parent and his/her child and finally agape love as charity; the love of God for man and of man for God. Therefore, thanks to the ancient Grecians for their different classifications of love, I now have the ability to categorize the several relationships shared in Quentin Tarantino’s films.

The various relationships shared by a motley crew of characters for Pulp Fiction.

For example, in the film Pulp Fiction, each character shares a relationship with another in film, and depending on the nature of that relationship, each bond can be categorized into the four classifications of love according to the ancient Grecians. In the film, the relationship shared by the crime boss Marsellus Wallace and his wife Mia Wallace could be categorized into an eros relationship, whereas with the two main crime associates, Jules and Vincent shared a philia relationship. Because of the nature of these relationships, Tarantino has the ability to mold the outcome of the story and change the plot to better fit any given situation. As a result, Tarantino uses love, to act as the ultimate plot apparatus. In this context, Tarantino uses love to act as a MacGuffin, and as such, he allows, each relationship to flourish depending on what form and either the success or failure of each relationship. By using love as the ultimate MacGuffin, the plotlines in his films may vary greatly; however, thanks to the MacGuffin aspect of his use of love, the plotline consistently moves along with purpose.

The varying levels of love shared in each relationship in the film Jackie Brown

Also, in the film Jackie Brown, the various relationships shared between Jackie Brown, Max Cherry, Ordell Robbie, and Winston Powell show the audience each type of love in which they are classified. Therefore, because of the duality shared between the concept of love and MacGuffins, whenever paired, they form the perfect plot device that not only makes the film more efficient but deeply more enjoyable.

If love can be related to experiences, then love is applicable to any human who can define and feel it. From my perspective, love is a shared feeling of mutual respect, honesty, and personal interest. These feelings can be described and shown through actions. Therefore, in our everyday lives, through the way we interact with each other, we show our intentions toward each other, and as a result, our actions tend to define which classification of love each bond categorizes as. However, because the world ceases to be perfect, life ceases to be perfect, as such, those who suffer from the world’s less-than-perfect environment may turn to alternative forms of release from stress. While life may not be enjoyable at all times, love has the ability to cure the strongest hate, relieve stress, as well as create new relationships that can flourish under any circumstance. This year, I have had the opportunity to attend the University of Georgia. At first, I was incredibly excited for the new friendships and experiences that I would make; however, because of several academic courses, my lack of performance discouraged me time and time again. After my classes during a majority of my semester, I would essentially starve my self by sulking in my disappointment. This depression of poor performance plagued me for weeks at a time. Therefore, in order to cope, I began to listen to music, more specifically. Coldplay. And eventually, I felt like I had formed a personal relationship with the band through the songs they have written.

When you try your best, but you don’t succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep
Stuck in reverse
And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can’t replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?
(Chorus) Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones 
And I will try to fix you
And high up above or down below
When you’re too in love to let it go
But if you never try you’ll never know
Just what you’re worth
Tears stream down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face and I
Tears stream down your face
I promise you I will learn from my mistakes
Tears stream down your face and I

One song in particular showed me that simply because of my failure in certain aspects of life did not categorize me as a failure in life. The song “Fix You” sung by the lead singer of Coldplay Chris Martin, shares empathetic lyrics that describe real life situations and encourages those who need relief from stress, poor relationships, or in my case poor performance. Specifically, whenever Chris Martin sings “Lights will guide you home and ignite your bones, and I will try, to fix you,” I truly believe, no matter what problem or issue that I am facing, love will resolve the issue. Therefore, through my newly formed love for Coldplay, I believe that love is the answer to my problems with apathy toward academics.

Ultimately, throughout life, the experiences and moments that we share among one another essentially define who we are, and through these experiences we can categorize our interactions into different classifications of love. Throughout this semester, I have learned that use of relationships and MacGuffins in films share many similar qualities on and off screen. Therefore, because of the transient nature of love, I have had the opportunity to learn more about the concept of love and apply to my life in the form of music. Altogether, throughout my first year here at the University of Georgia, I have been given several opportunities to seize success, and while not always successful, I have learned that not all attempts have to be prosperous, simply educational. Ultimately thanks to love, I have friends, family and music to support me in my passion for academics.


(1)Coldplay, perf. “Fix You” Coldplay — Live 2012. Coldplay. Parlophone Records Limited, 2012. MP3.
(2)Agape. H. G. Liddell; Robert Scott (October 2010). An Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon: Founded Upon the Seventh Edition of Liddell and Scott’s Greek-English Lexicon. Benediction Classics. p. 4.
(3)Eros, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, on Perseus
(4)Philia, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, on Perseus
(5)Storge, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, on Perseus
(6)“A Companion to Alfred Hitchcock.” Google Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2016.
One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.