Monday, April 9, 2007

Grindhouse

Some really quick notes about Grindhouse (2007, Robert Rodriguez/Rob Zombie/Edgar Wright/Eli Roth/Quentin Tarantino) [overall: 81; Planet Terror: 66; Death Proof: 87]:

1. All of those complaining that it isn't grindhousey enough to be called Grindhouse: y'all're retarded. No one gives a shit, and more importantly, no one will give a shit in 50 years. It doesn't matter one fuck what it's called; all that matters are the films therein. Todd Haynes fucked up the Sirkian crane shots in Far From Heaven -- boo fucking hoo. Still a fine movie. You want a simulation, go play a computer game.

2. All of those complaining that the dialogue parts of Death Proof are boring: y'all're retarded. All of those complaining about Death Proof in general: y'all're fucking retarded. Recognize.

3. This is the first time I've enjoyed the presence of Jeff Fahey.

4. Rob Zombie, I love you, but put some effort into it next time. This isn't a White Zombie video. It's gotta look like a movie.

5. Now that that's out of the way, let's talk about what's really shocking: I think I finally understand Eli Roth. He thinks he's a horror director, he's been positioned in the media as a horror director... but he aint a horror director. He's a comedian. More than that, he's the straight guy equivalent of John Waters. This isn't to say that Roth's career -- which, to date, is one long "grosser than gross" joke -- has any kind of subversive quality (that straight guy thing again), simply that, like early Waters, he's out to film shit so disgusting, so offensive, that you simply have to laugh. (There's some pretty sick stuff in Planet Terror, but nothing can top Roth's climactic image in Thanksgiving.) While I don't think I've neccessarily underrated Cabin Fever -- I'm sure it's still crap -- maybe I've approached it, and him, all wrong.

Apologies to those who already figured this shit out.

7 comments:

Paul C. said...

If you think... you can... talk about... GRINDHOUSE... without mentioning... it's best... trailer.................................... DON'T.

Man, that never gets old.

Martin said...

Word, brother. Speak it true.

The haters are just like knives under my trampoline.

Paul C. said...

If only the haters were the ones on the trampoline and you wielded the knife, the problem might be solved.

Steve said...

Roth should never be allowed to make a film longer than five minutes ever again. Thanksgiving is probably the first time his extravagantly sick sense of humor and penchant for super-gore hasn't been tripped up by his crap pacing and overindulgence of the stupider side of his extravagantly sick sense of humor.

That said, I think he's still kind of a tool (during his cameo in Death Proof, I couldn't help but think that he was essentially playing himself), but at least he's got one winner to his credit now.

Also: I'm bummed that nobody yet has mentioned my single favorite exploitation-geek joke in the whole project -- the title card on Death Proof. I damn near fell out of my chair laughing on that one.

Steve said...

And it's probably kind of sad that I recognize the trampoline gag as being lifted from the awful late-period slasher Cutting Class, with a little New York Ripper added for spice.

Kza said...

Honest to god, Steve, I was going to list "Death Proof" as the original title but crossed out, followed by the new title, but I couldn't, at the time, determine what that original title was. There's a UK interview with Tarantino that states that the original title is "Thunder Alley" (I knew it was Thunder-something), which is the name of a Richard Rush car chase movie.

Scott W. Black said...

Wow. As I already told Matt (who won't be backing me up on this one, unfortunately), I'm surprised by how much I disliked "Grindhouse." Some reasons why:

1) The faux trailers, which ranged from awful (Zombie) to only mildly amusing (Roth). Actually, "Hobo With a Shotgun" was pretty funny, but I don't think it was shown outside of Canada and the Alamo Drafthouse.

2) Freddy Rodriguez. I was distracted by his extremely short stature (5'6") throughout "Planet Terror."

3) QT the actor. It's about time for him to get out of the that biz altogether. His part in "Terror" totally took me out of the movie; his bit role in "Death Proof" wasn't as irritating, but it was equally as unnecessary.

4) The CGI bloodshed and gore in "Terror" was way too obvious for my taste. It was done better, IMHO, in the "Dawn of the Dead" remake.

5) I guess I'm fucking retarded, 'cuz "Death Proof" bored the hell out of me until the last fifteen minutes. If I wanted to watch a bunch of chicks talking for an hour, I'd check out a rerun of "Sex and the City."

6) "Proof"'s antagonist, as played by Kurt Russell, is more pathetic than he is menacing. I have to believe that QT's original choice for the role, Mickey Rourke, would have been much more effective.

That said, props should be given (as the kids used to say) to likable stunt woman/actress Zoe Bell, who is by far the best thing in the movie.