Movie Review – Grindhouse

GH CoverGrindhouse is a double feature collaboration between Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez.

This cool 1970s-styled flick gets a serious 8 leaning toward 9.

Wow, what a retro party! The cinematography had a genuine 1970s grainy quality to it at times with little vertical green lines and all. Planet Terror had a much grittier, fuzzed out look while Death Proof was more clean. Both movies were great fun. Each had fake movie trailers that played at the beginning. All four had the whole audience laughing. Too bad that these are not actual movies: Machette, Werewolf Women of the SS (Nicolas Cage as Fu Manchu), Thanksgiving and Don’t.

The first movie was Rodriquez’s (directed From Dusk Till Dawn, Sin City, The Faculty, Spy Kids) Planet Terror. Zombies are trying to kill everyone in Night of the Living Dead style. The cast was chock full of eccentric, odd, weird, crazy and over the top characters. Gotta love a doctor that has a holster for her syringes. This one was pure zombie horror schlock. Gratuitous gore and excessive fire power with silliness that made us all laugh out loud quite often. Bruce Willis cameos as one of the bad guys. Tarantino has a significant cameo role, too. Lots of explosions, zombie feasts and gun fire.

As you all have seen in the commercials, (Rose McGowan) Cherry the stripper (sorry, she is a go go dancer and also plays the blonde Pam in Death Proof) loses her lower leg and ends up with an automatic rifle as her peg leg. Oh, the fire power! And when she fires off a thousand rounds, one might ask where all those bullets were stored. Who cares! Her accuracy, acrobatic skills and sheer toughness are a marvel. It was very entertaining.

Tarantino’s Death Proof came last. Kurt Russell is very convincing as a psycho stunt driver who likes to kill women with his car. I think it is Chevy Nova. Note the hood ornament, a duck. It’s a nice whimsical touch. Russell does a great job and has made the transition from doing Disney movies as a teen very nicely. Tarantino has another cameo role as the bartender.

The movie had a whole host of female characters. They were all pretty well done although the lead black chick in the second half did not need to use nigger at least 15 times (I do not approve). The car wrecks were actually pretty funny the way they showed the collisions from multiple angles with slow mo effects to see the various body parts being stripped and shredded. The squeamish should look away at this point! The car chase at the end was pretty intense and greatly entertaining. I don’t know how they did the stunt work for Zoe Bell (she did it but how? Zoe was the stunt double for Lucy Lawless in Xena and for Uma in the Kill Bill movies), but it was sure cool during the last segment. This one had a slow start but really got rolling and intense for the second half.

I would have to say that Death Proof was my favorite of the two. Tarantino has such a nice touch with movies. I love his work. While very nice on the big screen, these movies will still be great on your tv. There is no extra footage in the ending credits so you do not need to stay through them.

This does take three hours so hit the rest rooms before the movie. Enjoy!

 ~Elric the Damned

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