Saturday, November 2, 2013

#tbt Grindhouse review

Happy Throwback Thursday guys! Even though it's not Thursday.
 Sorry about that. Quentin Tarantino, weird as he can be, is one of my favorite directors. Pulp Fiction, Inglorious Basterds, Kill Bill, Reservoir Dogs... The list goes on. I pretty much love all of his movies. Back in 2007, Robert Rodriguez (a fellow director and Quentin's bud) and Tarantino himself decided to team up and make a double feature in the homage to those old poorly made exploitation pictures they all loved when they were a kid. The product was Grindhouse. Although I'm not old enough to have seen said exploitation flicks back in the 60's and 70's, I am old enough to enjoy the nice mixture of sheer insanity and genius that is Grindhouse. There are two full movies in the Grindhouse package. The first, Planet Terror, is a grossly over-the-top zombie film directed and written by Robert Rodriguez. It stars such big name actors as Josh Brolin and Bruce Willis, even Fergie from The Black Eyed Peas shows up for a short cameo (but I'm not sure how necessary that was). The plot of Planet Terror is that a scientist (Naveen Andrews, or as you may know him, Sayid from Lost) "accidentally" unleashes a gas turning people into bloodthirsty lunatics. So a loner, an ex-go go dancer, a bartender, and Josh Brolin's character's wife try and stay alive and find out what's happening. Next is Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof, but in between the two is packed with a few fake trailers and commercials that are actually great. First is Machete, directed by Robert Rodriguez, which is less of a fake trailer because that actually turned into a real movie with the same plot line as the trailer promised. Then there's Werewolf Women of the SS. Which is as stupid and ridiculous as it sounds. But it does have a funny cameo from Nicholas Cage. Rob Zombie directed that one. After that was Don't, directed by the great Edgar Wright. That one was about some haunted house, but it was done in such a way I was cracking up throughout the entire trailer. Lastly was Eli Roth's slasher-parody, Thanksgiving. That one was almost as funny (and bloody) as the rest of the trailers. Honestly, even if you hated the two films in Grindhouse (which I did not) the trailers make the whole thing worthwhile. Finally, there is Death Proof. The plot of Death Proof is there's two groups of girls who are being stalked by psychopathic murderer, Stuntman Mike (Kurt Russel) who kills with his 'death proof'car. After the sickeningly bloody Planet Terror, Death Proof was a nice break. It was violent, but it was much more dialogue-centric (as are most of Tarantino's movies). I enjoyed Death Proof a lot. It had some fun dialogue and characters, and it was more enjoyable in a sense than Planet Terror was. I didn't hate Planet Terror though. It had some strangely fun moments. Like for example, Rose McGowan's character has a machine gun for a leg that she uses to kill zombies. This is ridiculous, but it works for this movie. Rodriguez added in a lot more of the 'grindhouse' feel' to his film than Tarantino did. While Planet Terror constantly had the dirty cheap exploitation feeling to it, Death Proof used it a lot less. In Planet Terror Robert Rodriguez added in a "missing reel" to add to the feel. Tarantino did that too. Yet in Planet Terror, the reel was used to tie up loose ends and make the story easier for Rodriguez. While in Death Proof, the missing reel was added only for the feel, not as a plot device. It's obvious that Quentin Tarantino is more talented than Robert Rodriguez. Never the less, I still really enjoy most of Rodriguez's stuff. I liked Planet Terror, but Death Proof was just a bit better. Either way, the entire Grindhouse feature is a terrifically fun time that I would certainly watch again. So yeah, I recommend it! Happy Viewing guys. Remember you can follow me on Twitter @WhitsMovies and like me on Facebook at!            


  1. I enjoyed this movie as one whole package deal back when it was in theaters, and I wasn't a fan to see them split it up upon its DVD release, as that kinda defeated the whole point. But as for the movies themselves, I actually liked Planet Terror more than Death Proof, which remains my least favorite Tarantino to date. But yeah, the fake trailers were really probably the best part of this thing. Nice review, Whit. :)

    1. Thanks man! I agree with you on the whole splitting up of the movies, the point was the double feature. Death Proof is Tarantino's weakest flick, but I still really liked it.