Grindhouse (Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino, Eli Roth, Rob Zombie, Edgar Wright – 2007) A-

 

Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez set off to make a ‘B’ movie double feature. They wanted it bloody, with hot chicks and fast cars, violence and at times ‘cheese’. So, how can a ‘B’ movie get a grade of more than B? Well, quiet a few reasons really. First of all, it is damn fun. On another level though it was a pretty cool experience, and that’s what makes it better than a ‘B’ movie. In the early 90’s in Beirut I used to go to this old theatre, not quiet sure you can call it a grindhouse, but it was close. It showed cheesy action flicks mainly. The favorite ones were extra violent and full of blood and nudity. Once you pay the small admission fee you can sit there and watch movies all day. Matter of fact, I first saw a version of Pulp Fiction for the first time there. I say a ‘version’, because the gracious theatre owners or whoever decided to chop and re-edit the Tarantino masterpiece so that it ‘makes sense’ sequentially speaking. All that makes watching Grindhouse a great experience.

The film features both directors in their own movie along with some really cool fake trailers directed by others. The Rodriguez segment ‘Planet Terror’ is a gruesome zombie movie. Tarantino does ‘Death Proof’ as a slasher movie with Kurt Russell as an ex-stuntman who murders women with his car. ‘Death Proof’ is more heavy on dialogue -most of it great- while ‘Planet Terror’ is more typical of Rodriguez’ bloody flicks like ‘From Dusk Till Dawn’….only more gruesome and at some points over the top disgusting. Some scenes are pure brilliant in both features, one is the helicopter used to grind a group of zombies, Rose McGowen’s shooting leg, or the car accident in ‘Death Proof’ that leaves almost everyone dead. The car chase that finishes off ‘Death Proof’ is a lot of fun as well. Last but not least, Kurt Russel is great as Stuntman Mike, a role he plays as a cross between Snake Plissken and Elvis.  

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