Before you begin, this review contains minor spoilers. No strong plot points are revealed, but you may be able to venture a few correct guesses about the film after reading this.
I saw "Grindhouse" the day it came out. First off, let's start with the overall review: the fake trailers were superb, "Planet Terror" was phenomenal, and "Death Proof" could not have been more out of place. I wish I had left after the second set of fake trailers. I would have been happier. Continuing on.
Let's start with "Machete". Brilliant trailer! The "X" rating was the perfect touch.
Let's get more thorough. As I said before, "Planet Terror" was phenomenal. Absolutely perfect. It had all the necessary touches of what the classic grindhouse has been described to contain. The film is aged, almost-integral footage is missing from the film, and it was so unbelievably campy. Every single cast member put forth their best efforts to produce this raw reinventing of the zombie film. Everything about it was perfect, including the absolute bombshell that is Rose McGowan. The driving force behind PT is it's insatiable appetite for gore, and it has officially taken the position of the goriest film ever made. No matter how hard I try, I can't think of a single flaw in PT. I would have changed the ending to suit my own preference, but Rodriguez made the right decision. I'll say it again: Planet Terror was PERFECT! The fake trailers. Following PT is a set of fake trailers to three films: "Werewolf Women of the SS", "DON'T", and "Thanksgiving". My personal favorite was "Thanksgiving", directed by Eli Roth. As far as I know, there has never been a horror film centered around Thanksgiving. Many other holidays have been blessed with their own nauseatingly campy horror films, and Thanksgiving is now no exception, as long as you ignore the fact that we'll never actually get to see it. "WWOTSS", by Rob Zombie, was enjoyable. Not much more to say about it. "DON'T", by Edgar Wright, was equally enjoyable. But hands down, the best part of the fake trailers: Nicholas Cage as Fu Manchu. Priceless. Absolutely gold.
At this point of the movie, I should have left. Ten minutes in, I should have just gone with my gut and got the hell out of the theater, because the fun was over.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I'm talking about "Death Proof". It has been my understanding that grindhouse films were supposed to be exploitations of violence, sex, and all that other naughty stuff. GH had it all until DP began. Death Proof is, by far, the most self-indulgent and mundane piece of film I've ever seen. I love the idea of using a car as a weapon, but Quentin Tarantino, who has never failed to impress me, completely lost touch of what the film should have been. DP was riddled with soul-sucking dialog and, in a near 90-minute film, had a total of less than one minute of violence, and about twenty minutes of action. Do the math; that's about an hour of nothing but dialog. I love Tarantino's dialog in his other films. It's interesting, thought-provoking, and never fails to entertain, whereas DP was plastered with conversations of "who has the weed", "who had sex with who", and "who's gonna get a lap dance". Honestly, if QT had double-dipped into the Royale with Cheese lesson from "Pulp Fiction", I would have been hooked, but the worthless drivel of DP simply does not pass as entertaining dialog. Yes, there was a car chase near the end, but it takes so painfully long to happen, and it seems to last longer. I'll also add that DP looked aged for maybe 5 minutes and then it took on the look of a modern, brand new film. Tarantino should have left GH alone and focused his work on the still-in-production-after-three-years "Inglorious Bastards". I enjoyed less than three minutes of "Death Proof", and I'm wishing that QT will come out and say "Hey, just joking, here's the real film." There you have it. Excellent film if you don't count Death Proof. This is all my opinion. Some people, including famous film critics, are calling DP infinitely better than PT, but I can't defend their argument. I simply did not like DP at all, and I consider it Tarantino's only bad movie. It will be the black sheep of my DVD collection, only because I won't have a choice but to buy it if I want PT. I suggest you see GH from start to the bitter finish and form your own opinion. You may like it. I'll be returning to theaters to see PT again, but after the final fake trailer, I'll be coming home and watching Kill Bill.
I'm giving "Grindhouse" a 6 out of 10 because, regardless of all it's many strong points, I still felt ripped off when it was over, not only for the money I paid, but for the weak pay-off after the massive amount of anticipation, not to mention a completely misleading trailer for the film.
Thanks for reading, folks. I really hope you like the movie.
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