Sunday, 4 October 2009
If I stuck religiously to the reviews within the RadioTimes I may never have watched Death Proof due to it's fairly obtuse mini-review, giving it two stars and then giving "repetetive thriller" as a reason. I suppose it is hard to fit in "Tarantino should be doing much better original stories rather than re-hashing old ideas in an absurd nostalgic fanboy's quest" into that little gap and although I agree with this to a degree, Death Proof is in no way a two star film.
First off you've got Kurt Russell, who I love because of John Carpenter's version of The Thing and Escape From New York and even Sky High, playing a fairly creepy, yet oddly charismatic lead/villain/victim. On top of that you have an excellent soundtrack with one song being highlighted by Tarantino in the dialogue: Hold Tight! by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich. I might also add that the first half is nearly flawless and it is only in the second act that my problems with the film rear their stupid female heads. The film, in short, is this: Classic Tarantino dialogue with nice slow pacing THEN AN AMAZING CAR SEQUENCE then a new batch of women that aren't as good as the first batch talk for a bit THEN ANOTHER AMAZINGLY EXCITING CAR SEQUENCE - ABRUPT ENDING. The first amazing car sequence features one of the most fantastically shot crashes I have ever seen and if, like me, you have Steven Speilberg's Dual as one of your favourite films ever you will no doubt enjoy these moments more than anything.
Here are my only problems. The abrupt ending which, by telling you about it, should seem less abrupt, I wish someone had told me about it so I wouldn't have been so taken-a-back. Then there are the morally dubious women in the second act, with the exclusion of Mary Elizabeth Winstead who is supposedly left to be raped by a thick grease monkey.
I do believe Tarantino should pull his head out of his arse and stop making films to show us how much he likes films and Eli Roth, but Death Proof is a bloody good ride while it lasts. 8/10