Grind House

Started by MacGuffin, May 26, 2005, 12:11:11 AM

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Quote from: Ghostboy on March 20, 2007, 05:01:33 PM
I'll be back in Texas next week, but I guess there's no hope of getting into this.

Quote from: RegularKarate on March 20, 2007, 03:37:44 PM
two tickets per person

So you just have to convince RK that he's better off taking you than taking his wife.
My house, my rules, my coffee


Bloodbath and Beyond
What happens when hungry zombies meet a psychopath in a killer car? Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino test the B-movie limits with ''Grindhouse,'' their racy -- and risky -- double feature
Source: EW

It should surprise absolutely no one that Quentin Tarantino's Hollywood Hills home is a shrine to arrested male development. The bright yellow ''Pussy Wagon'' that Uma Thurman drove in Kill Bill can often be found parked in the driveway. And more often than not, a riot of exploitation-movie posters covers his floors like some messy teenage boy's bedroom. But the place that truly symbolizes the 44-year-old director's raging bachelor id, the inner sanctum of his fanboy shrine, is his screening room.

On movie nights, Tarantino's guest list may include fellow directors like Boogie Nights' Paul Thomas Anderson, Shaun of the Dead's Edgar Wright, Hostel's Eli Roth, and Clerks' Kevin Smith. It may also be sprinkled with rappers and fellow kung fu movie aficionados like the Wu-Tang Clan's RZA, or old co-workers from Video Archives, the Manhattan Beach video store where the high school dropout got his unofficial Ph.D. in cinema studies.

Tarantino presides over these evenings like a gladhanding cruise director. There's popcorn and beer, and it's not uncommon for some audience members to bring their own smokable concessions. As for the films, they tend to center on Tarantino obsessions like blaxploitation flicks, madcap European sex comedies, and Italian zombie extravaganzas. Between movies, he unspools a selection of trailers from his private stash. Maybe a few women-in-prison pictures or a handful of teasers that all feature the same long-forgotten actor whose career never took off, but who was once huge in Denmark. By the time it's all over, it's usually light outside.

Grindhouse is the closest most of us will ever come (and perhaps want to come) to attending a movie night at Quentin Tarantino's house. Composed of two 85-minute movies — one by Tarantino and the other by Sin City director Robert Rodriguez — Grindhouse is a lovingly bloody tribute to the kind of low-rent double features that both directors were weaned on. The kind of movies that would literally grind out of movie projectors continuously at the seedy theaters on New York's 42nd Street.

To make the film look as authentically bad as possible, Tarantino and Rodriguez intentionally scratched their prints and edited out ''missing reels,'' so that a talky bit of onscreen exposition might, all of a sudden, hiccup into the middle of an action scene. They also included a handful of fake exploitation-movie trailers (directed by pals like Roth, Wright, and The Devil's Rejects' Rob Zombie) to run during the film's ''intermission.'' The end product may not be everyone's idea of a fun night at the movies, but you might not want to tell Bob and Harvey Weinstein that: The execs could really use a hit to silence the naysayers who've been dogging them since they parted ways with Miramax. In any case, for Tarantino and Rodriguez, Grindhouse is a chance to relive the kinds of films that made the two want to become directors in the first place.

Rodriguez and Tarantino met in 1992 at the Toronto film festival. Rodriguez was there with his Spanish-language action cheapie, El Mariachi; Tarantino with Reservoir Dogs. ''We did some panel discussions together about violence in the movies, and we were the only two people there dressed in black,'' recalls Rodriguez. Lifelong bonds have been formed on flimsier connections. Tarantino invited Rodriguez up to his hotel room and read him the first few pages of his next film, Pulp Fiction.

When the two directors returned to Los Angeles, they discovered that they had offices just a couple of doors down from each other on the Sony lot. Before long, Tarantino was barreling into Rodriguez's office and acting out scenes from Pulp Fiction, while Rodriguez would show Tarantino the storyboards for his next film, Desperado. And so it went for the next decade. Rodriguez would write roles into his films for Tarantino; Tarantino would donate nuggets of dialogue to Rodriguez's scripts.

Then, one day in 2003, Rodriguez was standing in Tarantino's living room when he noticed an old movie poster spread out on the floor. It was a one-sheet for the 1957 double feature Dragstrip Girl and Rock All Night. Rodriguez owned the same poster. (Click here to see 10 other posters they love.) ''I told Quentin that I'd always wanted to do a double feature,'' says Rodriguez. ''Then I said, 'Hey, why don't you direct one and I'll do the other?' Right away he said, 'And we've got to call it Grindhouse!' It happened that quickly.''

As Rodriguez finishes this story, he gets up from a director's chair and hollers at a bunch of zombies. Damn zombies. They never look as hungry as you want them to. It's 4 a.m. and we're in Austin, Tex., on a muggy July night. Rodriguez is shooting Planet Terror, his half of the Grindhouse double feature, and the first to go before the camera.

In keeping with the whole B-movie vibe, Planet Terror employs a decidedly B-list cast: There's Freddy Rodriguez (Six Feet Under) as a loner who's good with pistols; Marley Shelton (Sin City) as an emergency-room anesthesiologist; Josh Brolin as her psychotic husband; the Black Eyed Peas' Fergie as a hitchhiker who meets a particularly grim end; Jeff Fahey as a grizzled barbecue cook; Michael Biehn as a sheriff; and Charmed's Rose McGowan as a go-go dancer named Cherry Darling, whose leg, an early casualty of the zombie outbreak, gets outfitted with a machine-gun prosthetic. You'll either think this is the coolest thing you've ever seen or want to stay home and watch The Queen on DVD.

Either way, McGowan says the machine-gun leg was torture. She had to run for her life with her right leg in a cast so that a machine gun could be digitally added later. Oh, and in four-inch stiletto boots. ''It reminds me of that line about Ginger Rogers: She had to do everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels.'' Of course, Astaire never had to gun down bloodsucking freaks either.

Just before sunup, Rodriguez finally sends his zombie actors home. He prepares the next scene, in which a convoy of trucks races through a gauntlet of zombies on a backwater road, sending blood and guts flying. Rodriguez sits in his director's chair strumming a flamenco guitar while the film's special F/X guys pour jugs of Karo syrup and red dye into the heads of dummies as if they were filling jelly doughnuts.

Rodriguez puts down his guitar and yells ''Action!'' The convoy speeds toward the dummies, and the F/X guys race into the bushes nearby like kids who have just lit firecrackers. The trucks get closer...and closer...then, splatttttt! Gore flies everywhere. Rodriguez runs over to assess the damage. There's a leg in one lane and a mangled head in the other. Rodriguez starts cracking up as he bends over to pick up a stray finger that's landed 20 yards from the point of impact.

Watching this, you can't help but wonder: How does a 38-year-old man with five kids find himself giddily pulverizing zombies at four in the morning? Rodriguez says it all goes back to one particular night at a San Antonio drive-in. He was 11 years old. And he and his nine brothers and sisters were piled onto the top of their parents' van watching harmless family films. ''My mom said to us, 'Don't look at the other movies!' But on the drive-in's other screen was Alien. And I remember sneaking a look at the exact moment when the alien popped out of the guy's chest.''

For his part, Tarantino insists that his passion for grind-house movies didn't grow out of being unathletic or unpopular as a kid, or out of the fact that he never really knew his dad when he was younger. ''That whole scenario is that there's got to be something wrong with me!'' the director says with a laugh. ''Really, it's just that ever since I was a kid, movies were the one thing I gravitated towards. If you go to any elementary school, there's a kid who's into cars, and if he's not talking about cars, he's drawing cars. And there's the kid who's into sports and the kid who's into comic books. I was into movies.''

Tarantino grew up in South Bay, a collection of blue-collar neighborhoods on the southern fringes of L.A. From the time he was 10, he was spending every weekend at the Carson Twin Cinema. When he was older, he'd venture to the dodgier theaters in downtown L.A. and sit through chopsocky triple bills, racy cheerleader movies, and anything else that promised the remote possibility of pimps, samurais, or nudity. ''When I give props to these movies, you have to understand — it's not like they were all good. There's an expression: You have to drink a lot of milk before you can appreciate cream. Well, with exploitation movies, you have to drink a lot of milk-gone-bad before you can even appreciate milk! That's what part of the love of these movies is — going through the rummage bin and finding the jewels.''

It's now Tarantino's turn behind the camera in Austin. His Grindhouse installment, Death Proof, is a slasher film — except the slasher uses a muscle car to kill young women instead of a knife. Depending on what mood you catch him in, Tarantino refers to it as ''my slasher film,'' ''my car-chase film,'' or ''my women's revenge film.'' On this October night, however, Death Proof is his head-on-collision film. Seven or eight identical black Chevy Novas and red Honda Civics sit quietly on the set, unaware of the twisted-metal fates that await them. Kurt Russell plays the Nova's owner — a sadistic stunt driver named Stuntman Mike who stalks two different groups of young women that include Rosario Dawson and Zoë Bell, a New Zealander who was Uma Thurman's stunt double in Kill Bill.

When asked why he cast Russell as his psycho, Tarantino replies, ''For people of my generation, he's a true hero. He was Snake Plissken in Escape From New York, MacReady in The Thing, and Jack Burton in Big Trouble in Little China. But now, there's a whole audience out there that doesn't know what Kurt Russell can do. When I open the newspaper and see an ad that says 'Kurt Russell in Dreamer,' or 'Kurt Russell in Miracle,' I'm not disparaging these movies, but I'm thinking: When is Kurt Russell going to be a badass again?''

Some might say he never stopped. After all, Russell isn't exactly the Travolta reclamation project that Tarantino paints him to be. And he truly is a macho guy's guy on and off the screen. Looking 20 years younger in person, the 56-year-old does just about all of his own stunt driving in Death Proof. And then there's the badass vein that throbs in his neck when he discusses the possibility of his most famous character, Escape From New York's Snake Plissken, being played in a remake by a Scotsman — 300's Gerard Butler. ''I do think that Snake was quintessentially one thing — and that is American.''

Russell has nothing but praise for Tarantino. When it comes to the director's fanboy love of the actor's early films, though, he's both flattered and a bit creeped out. ''He knows every scene of every movie I've ever done, which is a great feeling. But I don't really understand why Quentin is so fanatical about movies. They're just movies.''

As zydeco music blares over a loudspeaker and the stunt crew sets up the collision, Tarantino begins rattling off his favorite car-chase movies, like 1971's Vanishing Point and 1974's Dirty Mary Crazy Larry. A walkie-talkie informs him that they're ready to do the crash. The cars are being driven by remote control, and when they get up to ramming speed and slam nose to nose, glass flies in every direction.

Tarantino and Russell start giggling like little boys who just witnessed a magic trick. ''Good s---!'' says Tarantino. ''Good s---!'' says Russell. Then the two of them head over to the catering table for burgers. There's one left and Tarantino grabs it. Someone offers Russell a veggie burger instead and he just laughs: ''That's like riding a motorcycle with a helmet on...what's the point?!''

Just weeks before Grindhouse's release, the MPAA comes calling. Tarantino and Rodriguez are both bleary-eyed as they lumber into a private conference room in Los Angeles to hear the verdict on their film from the ratings board via speakerphone. They look like death-row prisoners heading to the gallows. The directors have been up all night trimming their film back from 3 hours and 15 minutes to just under 3 hours. But what the MPAA is concerned about is the film's over-the-top violence.

About 20 minutes later, Tarantino and Rodriguez emerge smiling. For the most part, they'll be getting away with murder (and cannibalism and severed limbs and arterial spray). The MPAA asked for only a few nips and tucks to guarantee the film's R rating, and they mostly involve Eli Roth's fake trailer for a slasher film called Thanksgiving, which featured a scene of a topless cheerleader being impaled on a knife while doing a split on a trampoline. Believe it or not, it's even nastier than it sounds, and it will be significantly trimmed back.

But there's still plenty left to worry about between now and the film's release. Like, who exactly is going to see this film? ''It's not a layup like 300,'' admits Harvey Weinstein. ''But that's what we're famous for.'' The Weinsteins, who have backed Tarantino and Rodriguez for the past 15 years and who have gotten filthy rich off films like Pulp Fiction and Spy Kids, have more riding on Grindhouse than its $53 million budget. Two years ago, the brothers left Miramax after prolonged battles with its parent company, Disney, and launched the Weinstein Co. Ever since, there has been no shortage of people in the industry watching intently as the brothers try to get their sea legs back.

While the Weinstein Co. has raised more than $1 billion from outside investors and released such films as Transamerica and Dimension's Scary Movie 4, they still haven't managed to regain their magic touch at the box office — or at the Oscars. And Tarantino and Rodriguez's movie is anything but a sure thing. After all, there's a reason that the films Grindhouse celebrates weren't widely seen the first time around. ''No one movie decides the fate of the company,'' says Harvey Weinstein, ''but this is very important because it's Quentin and Robert. If we get their audience, we're going to be thrilled.''

Of course, accounting ledgers were the last thing on Tarantino's mind a year ago, when Grindhouse was just a twinkle in its parents' eyes. Tarantino envisioned their film as a throwback not just to the milk-gone-bad movies he loved as a kid but to the moviegoing experiences that molded him into the cinema-mad man-child he is today. ''We want Grindhouse to be a ride. Two movies! Trailers! Bad prints! And hey, if a little bit of gang violence breaks out in the theater, all the better.... It just makes the experience more interactive.''

Killer babes, blood, and body parts!
A behind-the-scenes look with Quentin Tarantino and the cast of ''Grindhouse'' at the EW photo shoot,,20018143,00.html

Christopher Nolan's directive was clear to everyone in the cast and crew: Use CGI only as a last resort.


Tarantino on the Grindhouse Trailers
Source: ComingSoon

Of the exciting elements that collide in Dimension Films' upcoming Grindhouse (opening April 6th), the faux trailers directed by a trio of guest hotshots are generating plenty of hype all on their own. Rob Zombie (The Devil's Rejects), Eli Roth (Hostel) and Edgar Wright (Hot Fuzz) are all contributing two to three-minute trailers for Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez's love letter to '70s sordid filmmaking.

It has already been reported that "Machete" - Rodriguez's action-packed trailer starring Danny Trejo as the sharp and deadly titular character - is being developed as a feature (more on that below). But what are the chances of seeing Zombie's "Werewolf Women of the S.S.," Wright's "Don't" and Roth's "Thanksgiving" fully fleshed-out?

"Our whole thing is that we were actually going to let the fans dictate that," Tarantino explains to us while out promoting Grindhouse this weekend. "Machete could genuinely be done grindhouse[-style]. About a half-hour is already put together and [Rodriguez] could expand it and literally show up for just another six or seven days and just wrap it up. That'd be extremely New World Pictures style." (For those not up on the Tarantino reference, New World was established in the '70s by leading voice of independent genre filmmaking, Roger Corman, before changing hands in the early-'80s.)

Tarantino adds that bringing the filmmakers on board involved very little arm-twisting. With "Machete" completed early on, he says, "Edgar Wright and Eli Roth, both friends of ours, were at my house and I showed them 'Machete,' I even had the lobby cards Robert made. They really got what we wanted to do and they're just as knowledgeable when it comes to cinema and it just seemed like a perfect fit. Rob Zombie came aboard because of [Dimension Films'] Bob Weinstein - and he brought it up to Zombie because he's doing 'Halloween' for Dimension and I thought it was a really good idea."

"Werewolf Women of the S.S." - starring Sybil Danning, Sheri Moon Zombie, Udo Kier and Nicolas Cage as Fu Manchu - wound up filling a void Tarantino and Rodriguez had not originally considered for Grindhouse. "It's got a Jess Franco sleaziness that's not in the other movies. It was a vein we hadn't really hit on and we knew we had to go in that direction!"
"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art." - Andy Warhol

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Gold Trumpet

Quote from: MacGuffin on March 26, 2007, 01:33:10 AM
Tarantino adds that bringing the filmmakers on board involved very little arm-twisting. With "Machete" completed early on, he says, "Edgar Wright and Eli Roth, both friends of ours, were at my house and I showed them 'Machete,' I even had the lobby cards Robert made. They really got what we wanted to do and they're just as knowledgeable when it comes to cinema and it just seemed like a perfect fit. Rob Zombie came aboard because of [Dimension Films'] Bob Weinstein - and he brought it up to Zombie because he's doing 'Halloween' for Dimension and I thought it was a really good idea."

Tarantino describes violence as 'pure cinema'

Washington, Mar 13: Director Quentin Tarantino thinks that violence is the important element in films, and that camera has been invented for capturing the excitement in bloodshed.

Writing in 'The Sunday Times', the ace film maker, known for themes on violence in films like 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Kill Bill', said that fierceness is the most visual element in films.

Tarantino added that it was almost as if scientists and pioneers of films invented the camera for capturing violence.

'Violence is one of the most cinematic things you can do with film. It's almost as if (Thomas) Edison and the Lumiere brothers invented the camera for filming violence,' Contactmusic quoted his column.

The director added that the most illustrative filmmakers, make films that thrill the audience.

'The most cinematic directors, they're taking cinema and exciting you. I really do think about it like that,' he said.

I didn't mind when this project was a blowjob fest and nobody (including the filmmakers) thought about the film as anything ambitious. Now the trend is turning and they are equating a ridiculous form of movies to "cinema" and Tarantino is trying to make a rationalization for this film. Some people will buy into it, but most won't. I read the original article a few weeks ago when it was posted on IMDB (but i can't find it now) but his argument isn't convincing at all. Of course saying violence is the most exciting thing is a major stretch and really details no argument, but people are buying into. IMDB is hooked on arguments about how faithful Tarantino and Rodrigeuz are to the old Grindhouse movies and being crtical because it seems they may not be...

I hope this project comes and goes and Tarantino announces definite plans about making Inglorious Bastards soon so attention turns away from this and goes toward that.


his favourite kubrick is probably clork. nuff said.
under the paving stones.


Tarantino And Rodriguez Eager To Exploit More Exploitation Flicks'
We hope to keep doing this for a long time,' Tarantino says; directors' 'Grindhouse' opens April 6.
Source: MTV

BEVERLY HILLS, California — Together, Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez are regarded by many as the future of cinema. They revive and/or announce massive movie stars (Samuel L. Jackson, John Travolta, Antonio Banderas), bravely move filmmaking forward ("Sin City") and shoot their films with an independence typically afforded to Spielberg or Lucas. Now, Tarantino and Rodriguez are once again employing their brotherly bond to step into the future — with one collective foot firmly planted in the exploitation heyday of the early '70s.

As the April 6 theatrical release of "Grindhouse" nears, MTV caught up with the rebellious filmmakers to talk about "Soul Train" memories, screwing with the audience and why they're thankful for MPAA bathroom breaks. 

MTV: Everybody knows what a drama or comedy is. But what exactly is a "grind-house" film?

Quentin Tarantino: Well, I think the term was coined by Variety, if I'm not mistaken. In the urban areas of the big cities, whether it be Los Angeles, New York, Kansas City or Dallas or Nashville, [they were] the old dilapidated movies that showed in the old [theaters]. Exploitation movies would come in and play for a week in one area and go play in another place. But they would also show double features, even triple features. All the exploitation movies, women-in-prison movies, the horror films, the black-exploitation movies, all the wild stuff ... the last stop before oblivion would be the grind house.

MTV: Both you guys have extensive collections of these old, often hard-to-find grind-house flicks. Give us a few titles that people should track down.

Robert Rodriguez: "Rolling Thunder."

Tarantino: A movie that was released in the '70s, "They Call Her One Eye." You can get it on DVD under the title "Thriller."

Rodriguez: "Escape From New York."

Tarantino: I have to throw in a really fantastic, depraved little gem out there. You can get it on DVD; it's called "The Candy Snatchers," and it's about these guys who kidnap a little girl named Candy.

Rodriguez: [He turns to Tarantino.] There's one other, that your movie reminds me of. When it gets to the second half of your movie, it's "White Line Fever."

Tarantino: The funny thing is that I actually showed Robert that movie to give him an idea of [my] flick. He came down to my house, and I just showed him that one movie. He was like, "Where's the next movie?"

Rodriguez: [He laughs.] You get so used to that! Grind-house audiences get used to two movies for the price of one.

MTV: What's your first memory of understanding what a grind-house movie was?

Rodriguez: Well, Quentin experienced it directly firsthand.

Tarantino: Yeah, rather than the theaters itself, it was more the type of movies that were playing there. It was just something about the posters, the newspaper ads ... the TV spots for the blaxploitation movies that they would play on "Soul Train," or the kung-fu spots that they would play [on other shows], those horror-movies TV spots you'd see as a kid on TV. Now they keep that stuff until night. But in the old days in the '70s, they played all kinds of wild movie trailers during your cartoons ... it was like forbidden fruit.

MTV: And you wouldn't go see movies like these in slick megaplexes with stadium seating.

Tarantino: [He laughs.] No. In some theaters you were really taking your life into your own hands. Some of these all-night movie theaters would be where bums would go just to get off the street! [He laughs.] If I was running away from the cops, I would go to an all-night movie theater.

Rodriguez: I was raised more in the drive-ins. I come from such a big family that my mom would take her 10 kids, because that was the bigger bargain. We'd take the big van — everyone gets in for the one price. I would get on top of the van, watching a Doug McClure double feature. But I'd also watch all the other screens, which had other things we weren't supposed to watch.

MTV: In your two movies, and the trailers that run in between, you're constantly screwing with the audience. We get scratches, sound problems, burned and even missing reels. Was it fun messing with your movies?

Rodriguez: Some of these old prints we'd watch would be so scarred-up and so beat-up. ... We were watching one horror film where the sound dropped out, and there was no sound, and right before the big scare, it popped back on! It was an accident, but we knew we had to do stuff like that on purpose.

MTV: Each of you also puts up a "Reel Missing" sign, just when the audience thinks it's about to get a sexy scene.

Tarantino: Well, Robert's missing-reel thing is a joke. I actually want the audience to get mad. [He laughs.] I want them to vocally scream, "Quentin, you A-hole!"

MTV: Tell us one thing each of you sees in the other's "Grindhouse" movie that makes you go, "Man, I wish I had that skill."

Rodriguez: I know mine, but it's not "I wish I had that skill" as much as it's "I wish I wasn't so chicken." It's when he did his action stuff, for real. Quentin went out with real cars, going real fast, with old stunt guys who used to do this forever. It's just really dangerous. I would have been doing that on a green screen.

Tarantino: It's Robert's editing skills that I've always admired; how he puts his sequences together. In the instance of "Planet Terror," it all comes down to one shot for me ... Rose [McGowan] being pulled away by the helicopter. It's just so comic-booky, and so dreamy, and so lovingly perfect in every way ... [when I watch that], that's when I'm like, "Maybe this green-screen stuff actually does have a purpose."

Rodriguez: Yeah, but that girl was pretty for real. She was on a crane; we pulled her on a cable, and she went all the way up. We just added the helicopter later.

MTV: Much was made in the press of your battles with the MPAA. What did you have to cut out to get your R rating?

Tarantino: We weren't fighting with them. We got an R rating very easily.

MTV: I noticed a big continuity flaw, when Kurt Russell's Stuntman Mike is sitting at the bar. First he has nachos in his hand, then his drink, then suddenly nachos again. Did you do that on purpose, just because old grind-house films would be poorly edited?

Tarantino: That was part of the thing. My editor Sally is one of the greatest editors, as far as I'm concerned, in the history of cinema ... [but] we actually went out of our way not to worry about the niceties as far as what's going on outside the car window, are there continuity issues going on, or even nachos versus the glass ... I gave myself the license not to worry about that stuff.

MTV: You guys have talked about making the "Grindhouse" name a brand and releasing other movies in this format. How would that work?

Tarantino: Well, we hope to keep doing this for a long time. There's all these subgenres in exploitation movies and cinema in general that we like, and this gives us a license to explore them all ... I do have an idea in my mind for an old-school kung-fu movie that would be shot in Mandarin ... there would be a long version of it, with subtitles and all serious. Then I would cut another version way down, like they did in America, and dub it! Not to make it look silly, but you can't help but benefit from its humorous quality.

MTV: So you'd do half that, and maybe the other half might be a full-length version of one of the "Grindhouse" trailers?

Tarantino: If the audience screams for "Thanksgiving" and "Don't!" or "Werewolf Women of the S.S.," and [directors] Rob [Zombie], Edgar [Wright] and Eli [Roth] want to do it, we're all down.

MTV: Is your military flick "Inglorious Bastards" next?

Tarantino: Yes, that should be the next one down the line.
"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art." - Andy Warhol

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Russell Kills In Grindhouse

Kurt Russell, who plays the villainous Stuntman Mike in Quentin Tarantino's piece of Grindhouse, said that he tried various versions of the character before finding one that even the notorious helmer of Kill Bill found extreme. Russell plays the scarred, pompadoured killer in Death Proof, an homage to such '70s car-chase flicks as Vanishing Point and the original Gone in 60 Seconds.

"I was doing Marlon Brando at one point," Russell said in an interview. "I was doing it as John Wayne. I was just doing [it] all over the map, ... doing it as a complete screaming queen at one point. ... Did a Snake Plissken version [a reference to his Escape From New York character]."

Eventually, Russell found the key to the character in one word. "[I told him,] 'You did write one word here that I did really take to heart.' I said, 'I think it's the core of all these psycho-killer characters, especially this one, who only kills women.' He said, 'What word is that?' I said, 'Coward.'"

As a result, when Stuntman Mike gets his comeuppance in the film, he unravels in a particularly expressive way. So much so that Tarantino, who is well-known for extreme characters and moments in his movies, had doubts. "He's like, 'Just maybe a little less?'" Russell recalled. "And I came out of the car, I said, 'I finally did it! I finally went too far!'"

Not so much, as it turns out. "I saw the movie the other day with him, and at the end of movie, ... he said, 'I used that take.' So, in fact, I never did go too far for him. I never reached that level," Russell said with a big grin. Grindhouse, which also features an SF zombie movie by Robert Rodriguez called Terror Planet, opens April 6.


Grindhouse's McGowan Got Leg Up

Rose McGowan, who plays a one-legged go go dancer in the upcoming genre homage movie Grindhouse, told SCI FI Wire that she performed the film with one leg wearing a stiletto heel and the other in a knee-immobilizing cast tipped by a ball bearing, which would be replaced in post-production with a table leg or machine gun. "I was wearing a really heavy gray cast with LED lights, and it wasn't the most high-tech thing," McGowan said in an interview in Beverly Hills, Calif., over the weekend.

Grindhouse mimics a 1970s double feature, comprising Quentin Tarantino's car-chase thriller Death Proof and Robert Rodriguez's SF zombie movie Planet Terror, in which McGowan's character loses her leg, then gets it replaced with a machine gun/grenade launcher.

To accomodate the visual effects, McGowan had to perform in the ungainly apparatus. "It was quite uncomfortable," she said. "There was a little ball bearing on the heel, because if you were resting on the end of a machine-gun leg or a hospital-table leg, it would be very small and round and kind of tippy. And so my toes pointed in the air, my heel was on the ground, and my other side had a 4-inch high-heel boot."

Even so, Rodriguez expected McGowan to keep up with the rest of the cast: running up hills, jumping on trucks, rolling around on the ground. At night.

"It was cool," McGowan (TV's Charmed) said. "I'm not the complaining sort. I'm Irish. Just pull up your boot straps, soldier on. ... But I had to go as fast as everybody else, do everything everybody else [did]. And they got to basically wear boots and tennis shoes. ... It wasn't like, 'Wait for me! I can't run up this hill with them!' And I did run up the hill. I just fell back down. But then I would go back up."

McGowan added: "At night, I would take off all the body makeup, and it would look like someone took a baseball bat to me. Very sexy."
"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art." - Andy Warhol

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Of course, after three plus hours or something, I come home, turn on the t.v. and there's an ad for Grindhouse.

There's no question that there's too much hype around this thing, but that's never the movie's fault... I think I've done a fairly good job at ignoring the hype and not letting it affect my viewing this evening.  Obviously, nothing could live up to the fucking hype (like, I mean Neill Cumpston's awesome over-review on AICN)

I think this is definitely entertaining and worth seeing a couple of times.  I had a lot of fun... this thing has been shooting around town for a long time and we finally got to see what the hell they were doing all that time and the Paramount audience was INSANELY into it... so much that I missed a lot because of the cheers (a good deal of which were just for friends and places spotted during the movie).

Planet Terror is really fun.  Definitely my favorite of the two just because it so plainly went for entertainment value.  It's nothing but ridiculous.  There are a couple of scenes that were a little TOO "silly", but mostly, it was just... cool... lots of gore and violence... it was like what you always expect to see when you sit down for an exploitation movie, the difference is here it's like that all the way through instead of just a scene or two mixed in with dullsville.

The trailers are 'okay'.  The Machete trailer is the best and the rest are just worth a few chuckles.

I have to say that Death Proof was a little disappointing.  Overall, I enjoyed it and would see it again, but it gets way too Tarantino at times (more-so than most Tarantino films in parts). 

***very slight spoilers (nothing compared to the kajillion different commercials)***

It's like he started writing a Grindhouse movie then got carried away and decided to write really long chunks of "cool" dialogue with nothing else happening.  Then maybe Rodriguez came over and was like "QT, what the fuck?  I thought we were doing Grindhouse here, not Four Rooms 2!  What's with this?" so QT was like "okay, you're right, let me get it back on track... car chase, violence, etc..."  then he got confused again started to write even longer dialogue scenes with even less happening then I don't know, maybe Rodriguez finished for him while he jerked off to shots of records being spun on the jukebox.
Luckily, it's not that long and the good parts make it worth sitting through the shitty parts.

Anyway, there's more to say, but I don't want to get too far into spoiler territory.


'Grindhouse' filler becomes the choice bit
Guest directors Rob Zombie, Eli Roth and Edgar Wright bring sleaze to their mock film trailers.
Source: Hollywood Reporter

Do not be fooled into heading for the bathroom or concession stand during the "intermission" that breaks up the double-billed features that make up "Grindhouse" — "Planet Terror" and "Death Proof."

Perhaps the craftiest trick pulled off by writer-directors Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino in creating their much anticipated, self-conscious throwback to the heady days of low-rent theaters, scratched prints and the all-scuzz, all-the-time exploitation ethos is the false movie trailers that make up the intermission reel.

The filmmakers enlisted the likes of Rob Zombie ("The Devil's Rejects"), Edgar Wright ("Shaun of the Dead") and Eli Roth ("Hostel") when it became clear they were too bogged down with finishing their features to take on the trailers as well.

Rodriguez recalled Zombie's pitch: "He goes, 'It's called 'Werewolf Women of the SS.' I said, 'Say no more. Go shoot it.' "

And shoot he did. While all three trailers were shot in just two days apiece, Wright and Roth essentially shot only what ended up on screen. Zombie estimates that he had enough footage to make a solid half-hour movie and was particularly pained to whittle it down.

Zombie assembled quite a cast for his mini-movie, including Udo Kier and Sybil Danning, B-movie character actors Bill Moseley and Tom Towles, and his wife, Sheri Moon Zombie. Best of all, however, is an appearance by Nicolas Cage as Fu Manchu.

How exactly one gets from Nazi scientists to topless superwomen, machine-gunning werewolves to Fu Manchu remains delightfully obscure in the trailer, and that confusion is not only intentional but, as Zombie explains, a tip of the hat to exploitation convention.

"I was getting very conceptual in my own mind with it," he says. "A lot of these movies, they would be made cheaply. The real famous Nazi-type movie, 'Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS,' was made on the leftover sets from 'Hogan's Heroes.' That's why that movie, for a cheap exploitation film, it looks pretty nice.

"A lot of times these movies would be made like, 'Well, you know, I've got a whole bunch of Nazi uniforms, but I got this Chinese set too. We'll put 'em together!' They start jamming things in there, so I took that approach."

Wright created a trailer that is a pastiche of English haunted house pictures and super-stylized European horror films. The very title of Wright's faux film is the central punch line for the trailer (and so it will not be revealed here).

Viewers with a deep knowledge of British acting talent will be able to spot not only "Shaun" stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, but also such faces as Jason Isaacs, Matthew Macfadyen, Georgina Chapman, Lucy Punch, Stuart Wilson and Katie Melua. The uproariously paced narration was done by "Arrested Development" star — and voice of GMC truck ads — Will Arnett.

To get the necessary 1970s look, Wright used vintage lenses and old-style graphics. During editing, he scratched some of the film with steel wool and dragged it around a parking lot to make it appear neglected by wayward projectionists.

While growing up in Massachusetts, Roth loved the holiday-themed slasher films — "Silent Night, Deadly Night," "Halloween," "April Fool's Day," "My Bloody Valentine" — but there was always one day that seemed to be overlooked. The result: "Thanksgiving."

Scheduling a couple of days onto the end of production for "Hostel Part II" in Prague, Roth shot his trailer, appropriately enough, just after Thanksgiving. Somewhat desperate for English-speaking performers, he drafted "Hostel" actors Jay Hernandez and Jordan Ladd, actor Michael Biehn, who just happened to be in Prague, and assorted crew members, and he even made a cameo as one of the victims of a mad killer in a pilgrim outfit. (He also got the "Hostel" special effects team to help create some particularly gruesome images, most notably what appears to be a human body stuffed and roasted like a Thanksgiving turkey.)

"Shooting the trailer was so much fun," Roth says, "because every shot is a money shot. Every shot is decapitation or nudity. It's so ridiculous, it's absurd. It's just so wrong and sick that it's right."

It was Roth's trailer in particular that needed some trimming to avoid earning "Grindhouse" an NC-17 rating.

Suffice it to say there are plenty of see-it-to-believe-it moments, including a cheerleader simultaneously stripping and bouncing atop a trampoline, multiple lopped off heads and a killer who stuffs a turkey in a most revolting way.

"Instead of seeing it spread out in a feature, watching it all jammed together nonstop makes it more shocking," Roth says. "But we had a great discussion with the ratings board. They got it. Once they saw it with all the bad splices and the distress and scratches they were fine with it."

Zombie, Wright and Roth all express their appreciation and admiration for Rodriguez and Tarantino, not only as filmmakers, but for creating the "Grindhouse" project in the spirit of dementedly rekindling the lively, night-out fun of old-time moviegoing.

Yet for "Grindhouse" to really capture the spirit of the original grind houses, the seedy, run-down movie theaters that would show wild and relentless releases truly devoid of any redeeming values, the filmmakers had to take it down a few notches and be sure to connect with the lowlifes and the squalor. They needed the merely odd to become the truly outrageous.

"To me the only thing missing from our grind-house movies is they are not quite sleazy enough," says Tarantino of "Planet Terror" and "Death Proof."

The mock trailers, however, are something else.

"These guys brought the sleaze factor. They are coming from a sleaze place that me and Robert did not come from, but that needed to be there for the picture to be proper."
"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art." - Andy Warhol

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Tarantino grinds out Cannes plan
Festival getting longer 'Death Proof'
Source: Variety

Cannes' favorite son, Quentin Tarantino, is likely making another trip to the film festival in May.

As already reported, Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez's double feature "Grindhouse" will be split into two separate films for non-English-speaking markets. Tarantino said he's working on a longer version of his "Death Proof" segment that looks to be headed to the Croisette.

Given Tarantino's Cannes history, it's possible "Death Proof" could land a competition slot at fest's 60th edition this year. He won Cannes' top prize in 1994 with "Pulp Fiction." "Reservoir Dogs" (1992) and "Kill Bill: Vol. 2" (2004) were shown out of competition, and he served as president of the jury in 2004.

Just how much longer Tarantino may be making his 87-minute conversation-and-car-chase-packed actioner couldn't be confirmed, but added scenes may involve more character development and extended action.

"He could do a two-hour version of it if he wanted," said Eli Roth, who directed one of the fake trailers featured in "Grindhouse" and also played the role of libidinous cad Dov in "Death Proof." "Monday was the first time he saw it with an audience, and it played really well, so I honestly don't know how Quentin is going to feel."

"Planet Terror," Rodriguez's gory horror segment of "Grindhouse," may be gunning for a berth at Cannes as well.

Rodriguez's "Sin City," for which Tarantino served as "Special Guest Director," competed at Cannes in 2005.

The Weinstein Co.'s "Grindhouse" bows Stateside on April 6; international rollout begins May 31. Cannes runs May 16-27.
"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art." - Andy Warhol

Skeleton FilmWorks


i think i might be seeing this tonite.
Christopher Nolan's directive was clear to everyone in the cast and crew: Use CGI only as a last resort.


Quote from: MacGuffin on March 30, 2007, 01:04:02 AM
added scenes may involve more character development and extended action.

which means a new scene watching kurt walk to the car for 20mins. (he parked really far away)
under the paving stones.


Quote from: Pubrick on March 30, 2007, 12:04:41 PM
Quote from: MacGuffin on March 30, 2007, 01:04:02 AM
added scenes may involve more character development and extended action.

which means a new scene watching kurt walk to the car for 20mins. (he parked really far away)

Actually, there will probably be more talking... which is worse in Tarantino's case.  Those girls are hot and cute, but they can't really make that stuff work like say Sam Jackson. 
Too much talking in DeafProoth


i agree all the way around with RK.  loved it, it's a great time.  as an experience its completely successful.  preferred Rodriguez's over Tarantino's because it was just wall to wall awesome and i feel like his touchstones were a little closer to mine (John Carpenter).  Tarantino's took a little while to really get going but when it kicks in its great.  there's almost no point in comparing this to their other films or any real movies, it exists in its own universe.  if you can watch Grindhouse without a smile on your face, it sucks to be you.  more later...
Christopher Nolan's directive was clear to everyone in the cast and crew: Use CGI only as a last resort.


I'm seeing a sneak preview at the Grindhouse festival in LA on April 5th. Tomorrow, (or rather later tonight) I am going to see the triple feature The Blood Splattered Bride, Asylum of Blood, and Mary, Mary, Bloody Mary. It's at the new beverly in LA. Tarantino is supposed to be hosting some night but ya, I'm sure he will host the one April 5th. Anyway, I can't wait. So excited.
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