Last week, Quentin Tarantino's 5th film (if we count 'Kill Bill Vol.1' and '2' as one) turned 10 years old and i could not not make a post about it. This might be Tarantino's most underrated movie alongside 'Jackie Brown' and it's really one of my fave films from him so i don't get why it didn't get more praise.
'Death Proof' is a double story about revenge and little did i knew about the plot when i went to watch it on the cinema. I hadn't even watched the trailer so i just knew it was about cars or something. So imagine my surprise when towards the end of the first story, Kurt Russel's character Stuntman Mike, shows his true self and crashes his stuntman car into the other girls' car in the most damaging sensibility scene ever. I almost left the cinema after that scene because i was so shocked. But i'm glad i didn't because there weren't any more scenes that had such violence.
Kurt Russell has to forever be thankful to Quentin Tarantino for this role, because he completely shines in the movie when everybody had pretty much forgotten about him. His performance is so on point, both playing an apparently cool and laid back guy and a pervert and a psycho the same time that he completely steals the movie. But he's not alone in the movie because as in any Tarantino flick, it's full of marvellous actors.
We get two different types of girls in the movie: In the first part we see some chicks that are all about partying and drinking and smoking whereas in the second part we get a group of girls who are girls' girls, which i personally like more. And in a way, maybe there's a moral story behind all this, as the first girls who go after the guys end up in the fatal car crash whereas the second group of girls stick together and get their revenge on Stuntman Mike. But maybe i'm reading too much into it. Nothing wrong with the first group of girls, and i'm not saying they had it coming but they were the easy target.
Anyway, in the first group of girlfriends we've got some fine (unknown to me then) actresses like Vanessa Ferlito, Sydney Tamiia Poitier and Rose McGowan, who's not really in the group of friends but she's part of the story. In this first part, everything seems relaxed and the action of the story doesn't get started until the very end of it. Before that, we get to see these girls who doesn't seem as close as the second set of girls, and that have a relationship based more on hanging out than on getting personal with each other. They also dress like hot chicks, and they really are, because who can forget about Ferlito's lapdance to Stuntman Mike while 'Down in Mexico' by The Coasters is playing on the background? And the other stellar scene of this first part is, obviously, the crash and everything about it. When Stuntman Mike offers Rose McGowan's character a ride home and he tells her that she's going to get scared sooner than expected as he's not going in her direction, that's when shit gets real. As i didn't know the plot, i got such a sudden rush of adrenaline and excitement that was priceless. So you can imagine the shock with the car crash scene. I have to admit that it's a scene that is very well shot, from every angle possible, and has the surprise factor as well, but for me it was brutal. And while at first, many might though that the first part was boring, i think the director wanted us to think that, to get relaxed for this sudden surprise.
The second part is also relaxed but not as chill as the first one. Here we get a group of true girlfriends, who care for each other, look after each other and are very loving to their girls. And we also get conversation non-stop and that's one of the things i like best of Tarantino, his so natural dialogues and how in both stories, he really gets girls' talk. In this second part, we get the best of actresses like Rosario Dawson, Zoe Bell (such a surprise), Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Tracy Thorms, all badass ladies. And while maybe i feel like the first story is way better, i like this group of girls better and simply hearing them talking to each other is fun enough. The key scenes here happen towards the end to that epic race that they have with Stuntman Mike, and the ending scene, as they beat the shit up of him. It's kinda comical and everything about the race is exciting and it gives you another adrenaline rush.
I'm simply a sucker for this film because i really think it's perfect from beginning to end. I don't know why it didn't got more credit when it premiered alongside with Robert Rodriguez's 'Planet Terror', but 'Death Proof' is essential Tarantino: from the acting to the dialogues to the action to the unbelievable soundtrack. And 10 years later remains as fresh and new as the day it premiered as part 2 of 'The Grindhouse' session.
So, behind the cut there's a bunch of stills of the movie that i love, which is pretty much everything, so you've been warned.
sources: cine365, buzzfeed, cinemovieinfo, cinetecalameda, rebovinandovhs, pinterest, fydirectors, listgrrrl & elaltramuz