Unpopular Opinion: Tasteless Cinema “Death Proof” is a Masterpiece in Disguise
“If you truly love cinema with all your heart and with enough passion, you can’t help but make a good movie.” – said once Mr. Quentin Tarantino and it’s also what I say to myself about goode writing
“Thunderbolt” – no, scratch that – “Death Proof” – The Best of Tasteless Cinema!
There it goes.
The burger among the caviar dishes.
The jukebox among the Morricone soundtracks.
The flip-flop among the black tux filmography.
The trashy one among cult cinema.
So, this is what “Death Proof” is about: Former stuntman “Stuntman Mike” (Kurt Russell) chases down these young women trying to kill them, seeking the ecstasy of their violent death.
1. Could this movie teach you anything spiritual?
You may find that you like your cinema made by a moving image enthusiast (read: fanatic), who worships the very ground cinema walks on and thinks the world of the garbage sold in theaters in the ’70s when everyone else preferred watching goode cinema on TV.
Now, that is love.
So, in his crafty project, Tarantino creates a piece of poetry worthy of respect out of the trashy sub-genre of horror movies, and it impeccably manages to:
a) color the characters one coating at a time as if this were some fine art (they happen to be a bunch of toons – yet as well-rounded as real folks);
b) feature some neat Tarantino dialogue (better than the one in “Reservoir Dogs”); and
c) be a comedy-gold inside joke intended for his fans and his fans alone.
2. What’s this movie’s take on reality?
Tarantino’s reality is further away from real reality than that of George Lucas, and yet somehow more real than real reality.
Could the events of the movie ever take place? Yes, they can.
Is it likely that they would occur in this inconsequentially convenient way? Again, yes.
You never know, life is full of surprises.
3. Are you allowed to annoy friends with how goode the movie is?
Fear not, go on and spread the love.
“Death Proof” is Tarantino! And if they say, “he said it himself, this was his worst movie ” in that smarty-pants way they got, you have to know it in your heart that he must have been deluded.
Behold the meta-cinema and true showmanship!
Tropes you have never seen used in this way, but go the extra mile to set out the era and subculture this movie pays tribute to:
a) damaged film of the poorly-made, overused B-movie (jump-cuts, damaged audio, the wrong movie title? – really, he went that far?);
b) among other parody scenes there is a priceless one of police cracking the case;
c) all music is hand-picked by Mr. Tarantino and almost exclusively a jukebox playlist;
Hang up that chick habit, daddy-o!
d) looks like someone rolled up their sleeves, put their thinking cap on, put themselves in the characters’ shoes, and went ahead and elevated the costume design up to Marie-Antoinette hights of level;
Now, imagine all of this backed up by the now-and-again feet footage, red-herring dialogue, and a real-life adrenaline car chaise – but put together in this pitch-perfect “arthouse gem of tasteless exploitation cinema” kinda way, in case you’re geeky enough this oxymoron makes any sense to you.
Yeah, “Death Proof” is a burger, the perfect burger that will inspire some chuckles, that is.