Quentin Tarantino goes for the ultimate 60s B-grade compliment by making an ode to Blaxploitation, Roger Corman, and Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! and everything in between.
Kurt Russell plays hard-done-by Stuntman Mike, who, as his name suggests, is a stuntman. More importantly, he has a “death proof”car – well the driver’s side is anyway – which is used to pick up women and then literally batter them to death.
Film is divided into two stories – one where he stalks and kills a group of young woman. The second where he stalks a group of young women but gets his butt kicked. Pretty simple, but with anything Tarantino does, it’s the dialogue that drives the pic.
From the get go Taratino throws the viewer back to a by-gone era with a flashback to the late 60s/early 70s-type intro to movies and television programmes. I was the waiting for the “Quinn Martin” production logo to make an appearance.
Then we’re into the story of three friends who are going on a girl’s weekend to the lake and stop off in a bar to pick up a mate. Bad idea. Stuntman Mike has stalked them there and decides to off all four of them in an audacious set-piece car accident.
After spending a few months in hospital, Stuntman Mike is back on the trail of his next victims. Bad idea. He picked on the wrong babes to mess with, and not even his death-proof car may save him.
The dialogue is good as usual, although there is one scene that seems contrived – the sheriff explaining to his deputy on his theory as to what Stuntman Mike is up to is only an excuse to let the viewer in on parts of the storyline Tarantino couldn’t explain through film – not a good look for a premier director.
The best part of the story is the final car chase scene where real-life stuntwoman Zoe Bell (in her first screen acting role) is obviously doing her own stunts and definitely looked like she was putting more than her acting chops on the line. Looked like a lot of fun.