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One “DO” and One “DON’T”… a retrospect of GRINDHOUSE by COOP

Posted on December 10th, 2008
Posted on December 10th, 2008


I recently discovered an entertaining horror website run by the witty “Final Girl” who challenged her readers to watch “Grindhouse” and write something about it. “Grindhouse” is old news but her challenge got me thinking about it. It’s an anomaly that almost (along with the continued support of Quentin Tarantino ) single-handedly resurrected the grindhouse genre. I reviewed the lost classic “Pieces” last week which actually lends credit for its re-release to the recent revival of this phenomena. So out of respect where respect is due, here are my quick opinions of the Rodriguez/Tarantino double feature, GRINDHOUSE…

Feature #1: PLANET TERROR (2007) ****1/2

This one blew my socks off. Totally cheesy and cribbed from hundreds of other films, “Planet Terror” somehow injected (pun intended) enough original ideas to deliver a commendable homage to the grindhouse films of the past. Director Rodriguez took a John Carpenter-esque visual style and synth score and mixed it with over-the-top action and gross out gore. It’s your basic zombie-infection survival movie with a few new twists and an all-star cast. It’s silly, it’s nasty, it’s fun and the reel breaks at exactly the right moment.

BEST STUFF: Rose McGowan’s “gun leg,” Bruce Willis as the Boss Zombie, “You’ll blow your face off!”, Fergie’s death, the return of Texas Ranger Earl McGraw, Naveen Andrews losing his head, “We’re gonna have to cut that arm off,” and Rodriguez’s rockin’ score.

FINAL WORD: This should be made into an 8-bit video game for the NES. You know… for kids!

FEATURE #2: DEATH PROOF (2007) *1/2

After the action-packed punch of “Planet Terror,” this one was the ultimate let down. A dude (Kurt Russell) likes offing chicks with his sweet ride that he can crash over and over and never get himself killed in the wreck. An OK concept, but instead of an homage, Director Tarantino tried to directly recreate an honest-to-goodness grindhouse flick. He must’ve forgotten that most grindhouse films were lousy. That, plus the style needs a lot of updating to appeal to a modern audience (like a fast-paced plot, a well thought-out ending, etc.). The worst part about T’s vanity project is how he injected his obvious fetishes in the film, namely… his raging foot fetish. I think the feet of the actresses got more screen time than their faces. You might get Harrison Ford and Quagmire interested in that, but newsflash, Quentin: Most people think feet are gross. Add a silly “GIRLPOWER!” ending and you’ve got a clunky, junky mess of a movie which I count as the director’s worst.

BEST STUFF: The fake trailers that came before it, Russell’s car and that’s it.

FINAL WORD: Let’s have more “Planet Terrors” and less “Death Proofs.”

Coop: “Uh, Mr. Tarantino? I don’t think I like feet as much as you do.”

Quentin: “C’mon, everybody likes feet!”

Here’s the best fake trailer attached to these two films… DON’T!

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Trailer for the award-winning short PRISMA…


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Morgan Freeman asks Coop a question at THE BEST DAY premiere! Video below…


My short film THE BEST DAY premiered in October 2011 at the Delta Cinema in Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Little did I know I had a special guest in the audience who was about to ask me a question during the Q&A. Yep, I got a little flustered when I saw who it was.

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