Fasten your seat belt, it's gonna be a bumpy ride. Quentin Tarantino pays homage to his B-movie favourites in this adrenaline fuelled tale of a psychotic stuntman's serial attempts to stalk hot babes in his supercharged, 'death proof' Chevy. Having already dealt with one set of women in Texas, Stuntman Mike (Kurt Russell) moves on to Tennessee, where he targets another posse of head-turning women. But this time Mike finds that he's bitten off more than he can chew, as the three girls (Rosario Dawson, Tracie Thoms, and Zoe Bell) give as good as they get, culminating in an 18-minute car duel (without CGI), which references some of the classic chase movies of the past. As with any Tarantino film, there are numerous nods to pop culture, along with razor-sharp dialogue that just keeps coming.
Average Rating for Death Proof  - 3 out of 5
(based on 3 user reviews)
Death Proof Chris Minton
Death Proof is my favourite Tarantino movie to date. I feel really shocked to have written that last sentence but amazingly it's the truth! The film shown as a Grindhouse double bill alongside Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror flopped big time at the box office when originally released in cinemas. Why? I have no idea...maybe people just didn't like the idea of the Grindhouse double bill clocking in at nearly 3 and a half hours. The film observes the perverse antics of one Stuntman Mike (Kurt Russel), a murderer who targets young attractive women and kills them with his 'death proof' stunt car. From the start of the movie we are introduced to a group of beautiful women and Tarantino's unparalleled dialogue quickly encourages us to grow fond of each of them as the story develops. It's at this point that Stuntman Mike kills and there's nothing the law can do to stop him. It looks just like an unfortunate road traffic accident and he moves on to another state and another group of gorgeous victims. But this time he's messed with the wrong women! Just like Kill Bill, Death Proof is a story of revenge and female empowerment. You'll feel shock and anger halfway through but satisfaction soon follows as Stuntman Mike gets his just desserts! Awesome dialogue, sublime acting and a jaw dropping car chase with a woman hanging on to the bonnet for dear life! Incredible! 5/5
Death Proof Ed Howard
With Quentin Tarantino's latest film, originally released as half of the Grindhouse double feature with Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror, he's perfectly captured the spirit of the 1970s B-feature. Two separate casts of chatty girls are pitted against the sinisterly charming Stuntman Mike (Kurt Russell), a villain who stalks and kills girls in his souped-up and reinforced stunt car. The dialogue is Tarantino's distinctive patter, dropping pop culture references and lowkey jokes, and the conversations are punctuated by two car chase sequences of stunning violence and intensity. The final chase scene is a true action epic in itself, where the reality of the stunts (mostly performed without recourse to CGI by real-life stuntwoman Zoe Bell) comes across with teeth-gritting suspense. This grand finale is one of the best car chases of the last few decades, at least, and reason enough to watch and enjoy the film in itself. That this chase results in a powerful thematic turnaround that underscores the surprising feminist thrust of the film is only a bonus, as is the joyful kitsch of the last few shots, which make it near impossible to watch the film without grinning from ear to ear by the end. Tarantino has crafted perhaps his most thrilling and entertaining film, if not quite his best.
Death Proof Kashif Ahmed
Quentin Tarantino simply doesn't care; he doesn't care that critical expectation willed him to become a serious auteur, he doesn't care that no discerning director would jeopardise the acclaim bestowed upon modern classics like 'Reservoir Dogs', 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Jackie Brown' with comic-book fare like 'Kill Bill'. No, Tarantino is king because he dares to do what he wants, when he wants, how he wants to do it, and ultimately, its this unshakable self-confidence/bravado that propels him ever onwards; still as popular today as he was 12 years ago. 'Death Proof', originally part of the 'Grindhouse' double bill with Robert Rodriguez's 'Planet Terror', is to the 1992-98 Q cannon what 'Ewoks: Caravan Of Courage' is to 'Star Wars: A New Hope', that said, there's no denying that even Tarantino light, is stronger and more satisfying a brew than most other director's at their best. The plot is dead simple: psycho Stuntman Mike (an excellent Kurt Russell) likes to murder women with his modified car "it's a sex thing" whispers Michael Parkes crusty sheriff in his trademark Southern drawl, petrol head Mike kills with impunity, but gets more than he bargained for the second time around. 'Death Proof' not only pays homage to the 'Grindhouse' exploitation genre; incorporating everything from scratched film stock, an excellent pre-credit certificate cartoon and a fake title: 'Thunder Bolt', but blends vintage Tarantino dialogue with his love for 1970s-80s drive-in cinema like 'Crazy Mary, Dirty Larry' and 'Vanishing Point', in fact, I'm surprised he didn't name a character Christine as a nod to John Carpenter. A film of two halves, Section 1 introduces some Texan good-time girls as they prepare for a night out on the town, Stuntman Mike stalks from afar until their fateful meting in the local pub (cue director's cameo as the barman and an appearance by menacing oddball Eli 'Hostel' Roth). There's plenty of good dialogue here, and though its set almost entirely in the bar, we really get a feel for the characters, as Tarantino builds up to the graphic, blood splattered conclusion. Part II begins as a virtual re-run, though when Rosario Dawson turns the print from black & white to colour, its game on as Mike tries to off a new group of young women. Its all here: everything from 'Big Kahuna Burger' ("...that's that Hawaiian burger joint..." from 'Dusk Till Dawn' and 'Pulp Fiction'), 'Red Apple' cigarettes (non-filtered I hope, again from 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Kill Bill Vol I') to Quentin creepily imposing his foot fetish on us yet again before snapping back with lines like "tasty beverage" (Samuel 'Jules' L. Jackson's verdict on Bret's 'Sprite' in 'Pulp Fiction') and "that's a little more information than we needed to know" (a variation of the Uma Thurman John Travolta exchange from 'Pulp Fiction'), basically a tonne of in-jokes and Tarantino references; 'Death Proof' is a Tarantino film for people who spend way too much time watching Tarantino films.
And if one were compelled to decipher what it all means; I'd say 'Death Proof' is Tarantino at war himself, for Stuntman Mike, like a hipster Hamlet, is plagued with indecision and uncertainty: is he the sadist or the masochist? Q's long-time friend and producer Lawrence Bender once joked that if Quentin hadn't made it as a director, he probably would've become a serial killer, and that's the scenario being played out here. For Mike positively owns the first half, and in many ways, represents Quentin in the 1990s, which could be why a lot of the dialogue sounds a little too-Tarantino for its own good. This was the Quentin Tarantino, or at least the media's caricature, of that time: an ultra violent, vociferous outcast (i.e. Mike recalling cult TV shows no ones ever heard of) who charms a generation with his loquacious banter, and by doing so is given complete control of all those around him (i.e. Rose McGowan's fate, the others just a handbrake & gearshift away from annihilation). This is Tarantino (i.e. Mike) as Zeus in full-on vengeance mode, albeit Zeus in a leather jacket, sporting an Elvis Coiff and exchanging the thunderbolt for a modified Dodge Challenger. In the second half, however, Stuntman Mike is suddenly out of his depth, and looks as if he may be overthrown by the descendants of his own too-cool-for-school legacy. Eclipsed by the shadow of his own genius; essentially outfoxed by gun totting film buffs (i.e. Tarantino's ideal women) and its here that Tarantino (i.e. Mike) becomes the masochist, an event which explains the Russ Meyer-esque absurdity towards the end. Some may even see a vague political reference with the title card: 'Lebanon' on screen long enough to make its Mid-East allusion before the second reveal of 'Lebanon, Texas'. For Stuntman Mike, like Israel in 2006, invades Lebanon with arrogance, aggression & ill intent, only to face a tidal wave of resistance that may wipe him out for good. 'Death Proof' is an enjoyable, though unashamedly trashy, knockdown, drag out affair; not the best film Tarantino's ever made, but an interesting and consistently entertaining ride; though perhaps its time to put the comics away and start the long walk back to the world of serious cinema. Okay ramblers, lets get rambling...
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