Thursday, February 9, 2017

Day 101: Death Proof

I have to tread lightly here because this is the favorite flick of a friend of mine. Luckily, I really enjoy Death Proof, although it isn't for everyone. Basically, it is a play in two acts with act one following a group of doomed girls as they socialize and run afoul of Stuntman Mike. After he kills them off, he picks a new group and the terror begins all over again.

This was, of course, Tarantino's contribution to the Grindhouse double feature that pretty much bombed in theaters. I saw it in an empty theater with two friends and we had a great time. Unlike the goofier Planet Terror, Death Proof is a pretty straight ahead thriller. Stuntman Mike, as played by Kurt Russell, is charming despite his age and rough appearance. He gets close to his victims and observes them (even getting a lapdance from one through a series of contrivances). The performances are great across the board, from Rose McGowan's hippie chick to Rosario Dawson's tough leader of the second group of women Mike targets. Uma Thurman's stunt double also has a juicy role as a stuntwoman who wants nothing more than to play Captain's'll see.

People complained about the pacing of this one but Tarantino has really gotten into the slow burn since his early days. Unlike most horror movies, you really know these ladies when they get killed. The set up is pretty essential to the whole thing working. The last half hour is about as thrilling a chase sequence as I have seen. Not for everyone's tastes but a very solid flick.

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