Saturday, January 8, 2011

Death Proof (2007)

Like very few people, I saw this movie alongside Planet Terror when Grindhouse was released in theaters.  Then, when it came out on DVD, I saw them both together again.  I admittedly never really liked Death Proof.  I really tried to like it.  I tried to see it through a Tarantino lens and like it.  A couple years later, I've become much more of a Tarantino fan.  I liked Inglorious Basterds and after a couple viewings, I "got" Reservoir Dogs.  With this in mind, I decided to give Death Proof a rewatch when it was playing on Spike last night.  The verdict?  I still don't freakin' like this movie.  I'm sorry, Quentin, it's boring.

Death Proof is kind of two separate stories -- each focusing on a group of gorgeous girls out for a good time.  The first group is some ladies in Austin, Texas, headed by local DJ Jungle Julia (played by the smoking hot Sydney Poiter...yes, his daughter)  They're going out for a party night, on the hunt for some boy toys.  They go out for some Mexican food and to a local bar to let loose.  There they meet Stunman Mike (Kurt Russell) who wants to hang out with the ladies, however they are uninterested.  But he gives a ride home to Rose McGowan, who serves no purpose in this movie except to talk in a baby voice and have RIDICULOUS hair.  He explains that his car is a stunt car built for a movie, and that it is "death proof", meaning that it can crash into a brick wall and the driver would live.  After he dispatches with Rose, he chases down the ladies to get payback for his rejection.

Months later, and we meet some ladies in Tennessee.  They're eating some breakfast and plotting to test-drive a Dodge Challenger that is for sale a couple of towns over.  Two of the ladies are planning on playing a game where they drive at a high speed while one lies on the hood of the car hanging on with a couple of belts.  Of course, this situation only draws in Stuntman Mike, who terrorizes the ladies as they fly down the road, trying to escape.  

I understand what Tarantino was going for with this.  The old-school grindhouse car chases and a movie chock full of sexy girls.  But I agree with the general criticism of the movie that is LESS TALKING MORE BLOOD AND ACTION.  I understand Tarantino's love of dialogue but it just falls flat here.  As my husband said at one point while watching, "no girls talk like this."  And being a girl, I agree.  No one talks like this, and no one should write an entire movie about girls having ridiculous dialogue and a couple of badass car chases.  Sorry, Death Proof but it's three strikes and you're out.  You and I are just not meant to be.