Articles from the Boston Compass, Film, Psychotronic Movies in our Zone

PMIOZ: Death Proof (2007) dir. Quentin Tarantino

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Screening 1/23 @Coolidge After Midnite

Practically an ad for its great filmic forbear, Vanishing Point (1971), Death Proof (2007) is a ridiculously fun, dumb, affectionate movie. The film’s music is great too (as usual), with Jack Nitzsche’s “The Last Race” fitting like a rough, shredded glove over the film’s opening sequence. And just to be clear, this is not Tarantino’s worst film, that would have to be Django Unchained (2012) IMHO.

I just watched this again for the first time since seeing it in a theater in Budapest upon its initial release. I liked it a lot more this time around. For Kurt Russell fans the film is a godsend, allowing Russell to flex his menace and charm for the first time since (essentially) the 80s, as the film’s main character, Stuntman Mike. His performance here is kind of a piece with his tough guy/wimp turn in Big Trouble In Little China (1986), and it’s a beautiful thing to behold indeed. The car he drives is a creepy, nasty thing, with which he attempts to create twisted metal in order to service “a sex thing”.

Jungle Julia (played by Sydney Poitier, the daughter)’s already dated, but still funny text message sequence is also a highlight. Really, I’m a big fan of the whole Texas Chili Parlor sequence. The film’s dialogue as a whole isn’t amazing, but in this context it doesn’t quite matter. Why these obviously very cool women are hanging around with these loser guys is the film’s enduring mystery for me.

Death Proof (The Grindhouse Cut)
2007
dir. Quentin Tarantino
87 min.

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