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A "Grindhouse" was a type of inner city theatre that would play all night marathons of low budget exploitation films in the 60s, 70s and early 80s. These down n dirty theatres would often show offbeat ultraviolent and sexually charged films under the categories of Kung Fu (Shaw Brothers films), Hixploitation (White Lightning, Gator Bait), Blaxploitation (Shaft, Coffy, Superfly, Dolemite, The Mack), Sexploitation (Supervixens, The Swinging Cheerleaders), Zombie and Cannibal films (Dawn of the Dead, Zombi 2, Cannibal Holocaust) Biker films (The Wild Angels, The Glory Stompers, The Savage Seven, The Losers) among hundreds of other subgenres.In the suburbs during the 60s and 70s, Drive-ins were the equivalent to the inner city Grindhouses. You could see many of the same kinds of films from the convenience of your car. The title of Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino's first collaboration "From Dusk Til Dawn" (1996) was named after the catch phrase for the all night Drive-in movie marathons.Both Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino grew up watching these kinds of films in Grindhouse theatres & drive-ins in the 70s-early 80s. When they became friends in the early 90s they often held Exploitation film double features in their own home theaters (and also at QTs Film Fests in Austin, Texas). Flash forward to 2006, the two moviemaking pals decided to recreate these wild nights for movie audiences around the world by making their own traditional Grindhouse-Drive-In double feature extravaganza complete with two raunchy horror films, fake Exploitation film trailers, ads and other cool treats.
First: Robert Rodriguez brings us "Planet Terror" in which a town is overrun by disease infected sickos. Then comes Quentin Tarantino's "Death Proof", in which a serial killer named Stuntman Mike murders people by the use of his stuntcar instead of a knife or machete."Robert's film is Horror, it couldnt happen, but mine is Terror because it could." - Quentin TarantinoBefore and/or in between the movies, there will be a series of fake movie trailers (as it was customary in old grindhouse theatres to show coming attractions in the double features). Robert Rodriguez presents a Mexploitation trailer starring the hard boiled actor Danny Trejo in the title role of "Machete". Edgar Wright (director of Shaun of the Dead) presents "Don't", a "70s style British horror film". Rob Zombie presents a Nazisploitation-sci fi-horror flick "Werewolf Women of the S.S." starring Sherri Moon Zombie, Sybill Danning, Udo Kier, Bill Mosely and Nicolas Cage as the legendary Asian mastermind Dr. Fu Manchu. Eli Roth's (Hostel) fake trailer is an ultraviolent homage to 70s/80s holiday themed slasher films called "Thanksgiving". An additional fake trailer called "Hobo with a Shotgun", created by Dartmouth, Nova Scotia filmmakers Jason Eisener, Rob Cotterill, and John Davies for Robert Rodriguez's SXSW Grindhouse Trailers contest, has been included in Canadian theaters. "Hobo with a Shotgun" is attached to the other regular trailers played before the main feature presentation which begins with "Machete".
1. Jason Eisener/Rob Cotterill/John Davies "Hobo with a Shotgun" trailer. (Canada only?)2. Robert Rodriguez' "Machete" trailer.3. Robert Rodriguez' "Planet Terror."4. Rob Zombie's "Werewolf Women of the SS" trailer.5. Edgar Wright's "Don't" trailer.6. Eli Roth's "Thanksgiving" trailer.7. Quentin Tarantino's "Death Proof."
Contrary to popular rumor, the missing reels idea in Death Proof and Planet Terror were NOT true staples of Grindhouse moviegoing. While many Grindhouse films would be missing frames, they were never missing entire 20-30 minute reels. The concept for this came from a film Quentin owns ("The Sell Out" starring Oliver Reed) which had a missing reel. He found he enjoyed watching the film with a chunk of the film's plot missing because it created an interesting mystery about what actually happened in that part of the film. This idea was then transferred to the two Grindhouse features. It also helped cut down the runtime for the movie's theatrical run.
There's been some recent controversy in the distribution overseas for Grindhouse. Because most non-English speaking territories might not understand the tradition behind a double feature, the underlying concept might be lost. Hence, as April 6th comes closer for the US release date of both films, there are decisions being made as to which countries will get "Grindhouse, and which will get "Grindhouse: Planet Terror" and "Grindhouse: Death Proof"After the Boxoffice flop in the North America, Weinstein decided to split up the movie in all other countries, including earlier announced double feature countries like the UK and Australia.
Although some people have criticized, sometimes harshly, the look of the film because of its manual "aging" process, it is actually a good thing.First of all, they helped in the MPAA rating procedure. There had been a concern about the nudity and violence during one of the deaths in Eli Roth's segment "Thanksgiving". Before the final submission to the MPAA, "age" spots were strategically placed on the area of frame where it showed the nudity and violence, where it suddenly became implied instead of being visual.Secondly, it keeps with the presentation as Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez intended the film to look like, as if you got a well worn print of a film that had been making the distribution rounds for a good while and decided to show it one day.
Since the theatrical version of the film is what they strived for to presented to the public, it would be considered their "director's cut"The DVDs will have two versions of each film: the theatrical version and a "restored and remastered" version of the film which is basically the films before undergoing the "aging" process.Also, take into account there are versions of both films pushing 2 hours, due to the fact they are being split up in other countries. So, the DVD may incoporate these versions as well, making a 250 minute version.Only 18 seconds is supposedly deleted from the orginal cut from an interview on G4TV.
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