With their Grindhouse project, collaborators Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez wanted to replicate the “charm” of the double features in the shabby B-movie cinemas of the 70s (so-called Grindhouses). Both directors have always been fascinated by those low-budget exploitation movies for some reason. However, it seems Rodriguez is limited to them, while Tarantino is limited by them. Both contribute one film each to Grindhouse – Rodriguez the zombie flick Planet Terror and Tarantino the action thriller Death Proof. So after Kill Bill was split into two and sold twice, Miramax then sold two movies in one and failed at the box office. Karma. Death Proof itself is almost as divided into two parts. The first half takes place on a rainy night, the other on a clear day. Two groups of young women are accompanied as they meet a psychopathic stuntman. The film exists in one of two statuses: lively bar conversations among the friends and action-packed chases. The dialogues are entertaining to a certain extent, but not memorable and too long lasting. Tarantino (and Rodriguez, too) intentionally inserts picture distortions and supposedly torn sequences to give the film an inferior look. On the other hand, he is too good a director, with too much money at his disposal to make it really believable. As such, the car stunts are nicely done. Alas, Death Proof was probably a inevitable step for Tarantino to fully embrace his obsession with trash exploitation films, so he counld break away from Rodriguez and take the next step.
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Kurt Russell, Rosario Dawson, Vanessa Ferlito, Jordan Ladd, Rose McGowen, Sydney Poitier, Tracy Thoms, Zoë Bell, Mary Elizabeth Winstead
Genre: Action, Thriller
Runtime: 113 min.
Release Date: 2007/04/06 (as part of Grindhouse)
Screenplay: Quentin Tarantino
Editor: Sally Menke
Cinematography: Quentin Tarantino
Budget: $30 million