the film is of course based off the old paracinema flicks of the late 70's and early 80's. we have all seen some of them i'm sure. the idea behind these types of movies was money. all movies are about money, but big studios can afford big budgets and big name stars. paracinema flicks could do neither, so instead they would create exploitation flicks. these movies would brings very graphic material to the screen, either sex, drugs, horrific violence. most of the slasher flicks of the 80's were paracinema. the blaxaploitation flicks like blacula were all designed to turn a quick profit. the word grindhouse comes from the theatres they were played in. very cheap, cheap surroundings. think of a porno theatre today, and that's fairly comparable to a grindhouse cinema.
both planet terror and death proof proved to be great movies. the first movie, planet terror was about a plague taking over a small town, turning people into none other than gruesome, cannablistic zombies. clear inspirations would be romero's living dead, and lucio fulci's zombi series. a stellar cast fights off the advancing horde, with blood and guts flying in the air. tarantino makes a guest appearance as an infected rapist (very funny scene). the film is made to look old, and used. at one point in the film, a message comes up saying the theatre has misplaced a reel of the film, and a whole section of the film is cut out. the sound becomes messed up at points, and the image is occasionally shaky. this might discourage some from seeing the movie, but i assure you it only adds to the fun. rodriguez delivers a top notch film.
the second film is called death proof. this movie is one of those movie where you grind away at the layers of your teeth because of the tension and suspense. this is unsurprising considering the director, tarantino. the film centers around two groups of girls, both mid 20's. the film details there run in with stuntman mike, played by a perfectly cast kurt russell. stuntman mike has a muscle car and is a psychotic killer. he praises his car is death proof (hence the name of the movie). this movie blew me away. however some where not so happy with this one.
i read several reviews before i went, and critics agreed that planet terror was the better movie. they said tarantino's was slightly less affective. and even as we where leaving the theatre the kids behind did not understand why there was so much dialogue, and less action. this is the staple of tarantino's best work. dialogue. the opening scenes of resevoir dogs have a group of guys at a table talking about madonna, and tipping. pulp fiction opens with jules and vincent talking about the metric system, among other things. pulp fiction is hands down one of the best screenplays ever written. tarantino films are post-modern tributes to older films. reservoir dogs was based off a chinese film called city on fire. jackie brown was a tribute to the blaxaploitation movies. kill bill was an obvious tribute to the japanese and chinese wuxia films, and italian westerns. so while death proof is 70% dialogue, and 30% action some may have been disappointed, but that is exactly what i expected from a film of his.
before both movies, several directors contributed movie trailers for fake exploitation films. rob zombie and eli roth were among some of those directors. the movie ideas that they came up with were hilarious. one film called thanksgiving is a tribute to slasher films. another called werewolve women of the ss was a tribute to the isla movies of the 70's. they were worth paying 8.75.
in any case, this movie rocked some serious ass.