Well, I covered Planet Terror last week, so why the hell not? Tarantino himself considers Death Proof his worst film, which, really, this one isn’t that bad. If this is him on a bad day – if this is as bad as it gets – then he’s way ahead of the game. This one bombed at the box office, but it’s got a following. If you haven’t seen it, it’s available for rent on iTunes and Vudu. Here are five reasons to head on down and rent it this weekend.
|Cars and ladies and violence, oh my!
#1 – The music
Oh, to live in Tarantino’s head. The soundtrack would be totally worth everything else the imagination could throw at me. T.Rex! Pacific Gas & Electric! The Coasters! Ennio Morricone! His movies consistently have fantastic soundtracks. The man has great taste in music. Fun story: this soundtrack is responsible for my youngest child calming down in the car as an infant: the colicky baby LOVED Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich’s “Hold Tight!”and seven years later, she still loves it. If anything, I owe this film my sanity because it provided me with a few moments of reprieve. If it can appease a perpetually pissed off baby, you’ll dig it too.
#2 – The cars
My dream car is a 1970 Dodge Challenger. Now I may not know every detail of cars, but I do know that for some reason, a ’70 Challenger really does it for me – the shape, the sound… mmm. This film also features a 1971 Chevy Nova, a 1969 Dodge Charger, and a 1972 Mustang. For a girl that digs early-70s muscle cars, the automobiles in this film just make me weak in the knees.
|Zoë Bell on a ’70 Challenger! WHOO HOO!
#3 – Actress-gasm
The actresses in this film are enjoyable for me to watch on many levels: Rosario Dawson, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Zoë Bell (good Christ do I love Zoë Bell), Jordan Ladd. Pretty? Yes; Bell is totally my type. However, each one can bring the badass and the sensitivity in the correct role. That’s what makes watching them so much fun. That there are so many of them in one place is just marvelous. Giving them a chance to speak frankly about life – complete with swearing up a storm – is something that women aren’t allowed to do all the time in film, let alone real life. We’re expected to be ladies; these actresses get a chance to be real women.
Oh, and for the record – you know how most people name their cars? I named mine Abernathy. Most people think it’s for the Hunger Games (which… no. No, no, no. Never in a million fucking years.). It’s actually for Rosario Dawson’s character in this film. I came close to calling the car Zoë – the ship’s mast sequence and chase is incredible. That she did all of her own stunts proves the woman has balls most men would envy.
#4 – It’s a smart ass
The descriptions of topics ranging from men to cars to work to clumsiness are hysterical. The one that sticks out for me is the description of Shanna’s dad at the beginning of the film. These characters rip on each other and don’t give a shit. You know what that reminds me of? An evening with friends. It’s really funny and endearing in that respect. There’s a level of comfort with the dialogue; it feels like friends more so than characters.
#5 – Kurt Russell as Stuntman Mike
I saved the best reason for last. Watching Kurt Russell go to town on this character is so good. I have seen him play a hero, play a dad, play an anti-hero, but this was really the first time I saw him do something creepy. Damn is he effectively creepy. He also perfects screaming in wimp fashion. He needs to play unhinged more often; I would pay to see that. This one was enjoyable.
|Scenery chomping with bravado.
I could have gone on about the car crashes and chases, but really, this one has a lot going for it. Check it out.