Grindhouse

31 Days of Horror - October 2011

They said it couldn’t be done. A fifth year of 31 Days of Horror? 31 more terror, gore and shower scene-filled movies worth highlighting? But Rejects always say die and never back away from a challenge, so we’ve rounded up the horror fans among us and put together another month’s worth of genre fun. Enjoy! Synopsis In Robert Rodriguez’s instant zombie classic, a small Texas town becomes ground zero for a gruesome epidemic when the Army’s “Project Terror” – a biochemical doomsday weapon – mutates a platoon of soldiers (and eventually most of the townspeople) into raving, pustulent cannibals. Leading the charge against the zombies are a hard-assed sheriff (Michael Biehn), a lone wolf with a checkered past (Freddy Rodriguez (no relation to Robert)) and Cherry Darling – a one-legged go-go dancer (Rose McGowan). Of course, she’s not one-legged at the start of the film. That would make no sense. How she loses the leg and winds up with a machine gun prosthetic is a tale for the annals of horror legend.

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When Grindhouse hit theaters back in 2007, its main attractions were Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino’s feature length segments of the anthology, Planet Terror and Death Proof. But after the release came and went, a lot of the buzz surrounding the project wasn’t about the two films that played back-to-back, but the series of trailers for fake films that got sandwiched in between. Rodriguez has already launched his fake trailer, Machete, into a real-life feature film that was successful enough to spawn a sequel – but what about Eli Roth and his segment, Thanksgiving? After Grindhouse got released, much of the praise for the tribute to B-movies came from how authentic to shoddy old ’70s advertisements Roth’s holiday-themed horror trailer was. The stupid voice narrating, the terrible acting, the bad dialogue, the person roasted like a turkey…it had it all. Roth has intimated in the past that he has plans to turn Thanksgiving into a real-life feature, but that’s been going on for years now, and we’ve still got nada. So what’s the deal? Well, according to a new interview the director did with Behind the Thrills, he’s finally cracked the story, is preparing a screenplay, and presumably will keep things moving from there.

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Austin Cinematic Limits

Kyle Day’s first feature, Cherry Bomb, plays as an homage to the gritty and sexy grindhouse and sexplotation flicks of the early 1980s. The film’s protagonist, Cherry (Julin Jean), is an exotic dancer who is attacked by a group of men in the strip club where she works. When the hospitalized Cherry learns that her assailants have avoided arrest, she vows to kill them all and let god sort them out. Thanks to an impressive trailer that spread like wildfire throughout the blogosphere, Well Go USA Entertainment took notice and snagged the rights to release the Austin-filmed Cherry Bomb on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital. To celebrate the film’s official home video release on July 10, The Show! Austin is screening Cherry Bomb at the Alamo Drafthouse Slaughter Lane. There will be a Q&A after the screening with director Kyle Day, writer-producer Garrett Hargrove and actors Julin Jean and Denise Williamson. Of course, the screening sold out well in advance via Tugg; so if you do not already have a ticket, you will just have to read our interview with Kyle Day and then watch Cherry Bomb on Blu-ray, DVD or Digital (or vice versa).

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The Coroner

Troma is many things to many people. Scratch that. Troma is either one of two things to some people. If you grew up watching classic Troma flicks like The Toxic Avenger, Sgt. Kabukiman NYPD, or Tromeo & Juliet, you probably have a soft spot for the low budget film company headed by icon Lloyd Kaufman. If, however, you missed out on these classics and instead just picked up some of the more recent offerings, you probably think Troma is a pile of shit. I have a lot of respect for Troma. I’m a big fan of Lloyd Kaufman and I’ve read three of his “Damn Movie” books. History should remember him in the same vein as Roger Corman – a low budget businessman with a vision. Few people have had a bigger impact on the world of independent film. Even I must admit that in recent years, the offerings from Troma have not always been fantastic. Much like how Corman disappeared for years, Kaufman too shrank back from the public eye. Movies were made, but little attention was paid. With the recent success of his books though, Kaufman and Troma are coming back in a big way and leading that charge is Father’s Day.

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The trailer for grindhouse throwback Dear God No! makes a bold claim, but it looks like it can easily back it up. It’s a promise that the film will have wanton violence, swinging breasts, and alliteration. Yes, dear reader, roving rapist bike gangs love poetic devices. It’s definitely not for the kiddos, and we’re all working on the honor system here, but the amount of silly brutality in this thing might not even be safe for some adults. The amount of nudity, people will probably be able to handle. Plus, it’s got a handy NSFW poster (from The Dude Designs) to go with it. Go ahead and bask in all its glory:

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Drinking Games

This week, the Nicolas Cage 3D grindhouse flick Drive Angry hits video store shelves. And while it’s not be a good idea to drink and drive, it can be quite fun to drink while watching Drive Angry. In the tradition of Planet Terror, Death Proof and Machete, Drive Angry features plenty of violence, fast cars and boobs. Surely, it will be on the short list come Oscar season next year. Get a jump on your awards ballot by checking this movie out, knowing it will just get better the more you play this game.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, we talk with veteran voice actor Steve Blum and Hobo With a Shotgun director Jason Eisener. Plus, Erin McCarthy from Popular Mechanics and Will Goss from Film.com tackle the Movie News Pop Quiz and maybe, just maybe find some love along the way. By that, I mean a loving concern for summer blockbusters like Harry Potter and Transformers 3. Listen Here: Download This Episode

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Hobo with a Shotgun is a gritty, nasty, depraved movie that no parent should let their child watch…and I loved every goddamn minute of it. It’s rare that we film journos are given the opportunity to be reduced to slimy, foul-mouthed 12-year-olds within the safe confines of a movie theater, but I’ll be a tiny little bastard if this film didn’t turn me into…a tiny little bastard. Its brazen conceit and relentless insanity touched upon all the things that pint-sized Brian loved about watching movies. But, as Attack the Block taught us, it’s not simply enough to compile the various pieces of genre films in a room together and expect them to play nice. And while Hobo with a Shotgun isn’t aiming for the same socially relevant subtext and deeper meaning of Attack the Block, within the rules it establishes from the onset, it shoots for the same high score in excellence. Scratch the surface of Hobo with a Shotgun, divorce yourself from the wickedly indecent content, and you will find a damn fine film that excels on almost every technical and artistic level. I am incredibly impressed with Jason Eisener as a director. There is a certain expectation with which one enters a film knowing that it began life as a trailer created to win a contest. But Eisener goes to such great lengths to tell his story in a way that is both stylishly entertaining and visually interesting that it’s hard not to be taken in by it. […]

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Remember when all of the chatter online was about a Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez double feature team up known as Grindhouse? This is in a time before it made a less than impressive box office run in April 2o07. At the time, the still unknown power of the internet was cited as the reason for the event film’s surefire success. Then it failed at the box office. But that didn’t stop us from enjoying it. Nor did it stop us from counting down the days until the home video release, one that would undoubtedly include a two-disc edition with both movies and all of the awesome intermission trailers. And then that didn’t happen. The two films were released separately, much to the dismay of the world of geekdom. Now here we are, more than three years later, and today will see the release of Grindhouse in its intended form: as a two-disc Blu-ray set complete with trailers, extras and more. So why aren’t we talking about it with the fervor of yesteryear? Why hasn’t this release taken its place among the year’s most anticipated? Well, it has been three years since all of the hoopla was squelched by sad box office numbers and pundits who were quick to point fingers at the internet’s lack of clout. And perhaps we’ve all forgotten that this is the release we’ve been waiting for all along. It has me wondering, quite simply: do we even care anymore? Or was our love for Grindhouse […]

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This Week in Blu-ray

The winds of change are blowing here in Austin, Texas. With Fantastic Fest over, a tad-bit of emptiness has washed over the land and left me yearning for more great genre experiences. Which brings me to this week’s selection of Blu-ray releases — one that includes a few unique genre flicks and one lovable turd that reminds me of a documentary that was launched into the stratosphere by the film community here in Austin. Also, there’s this animated movie from the Mouse House that will absolutely blow your mind on Blu-ray. It’s as if the cosmos has looked down upon us in our post-Fantastic Fest haze and said “hey, here are some good movies to satiate your need for the good stuff.” It’s a week full of releases that are delivered right on time, just as the leaves start to change and Halloween begins to peek its head around the corner. Time to spray blood on the walls and fall in love again with a tale as old as time, or some other confused multi-metaphor. It’s another round of This Week in Blu-ray.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, movie slave monkey for UGO.com Matt Patches shows up to give us hell. After some witty banter, he and Cole discuss the finer points of racial tension, bring Jan de Bont to a gun fight, and take a look back on our entirely appropriate relationship with Robert Rodriguez. Plus, we find time to review Machete, The American, and Going the Distance.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr jumps feet first into the world of exploitation pictures. He rips off his shirt to show his prison tats when he sees Machete and then becomes a weapons expert to go head-to-head with George Clooney in The American. Finally, he cringes and rolls his eyes at yet another crappy real-life couple love story with Going the Distance. It’s sad when the highlight of his moviegoing weekend is a Lindsay Lohan nip slip.

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Fox has beat out Paramount and Lionsgate for the chance to distribute a three-minute trailer.

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Robert Rodriguez is talking again.. And through several hundred lines of interview, we still can’t figure out what movies this guy is actually going to make.

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machete-1

And on top of Danny Trejo it’s Michelle Rodriguez, Jonah Hill and Robert De Niro!

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DVDs I Bought This Week!

Brian Gibson loves to buy DVDs. Come with him on his weekly journey into the depths of credit card debt as he tells you what to buy, rent and avoid.

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Artistic license, originality, worthwhile dialogue and the meaning of life are all discussed as Film School Rejects Conrad Rothbaum and Robert Fure go head-to-head in the first entry in the new FSR feature, “Shouting Match.”

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Quentin Tarantino, Robert Rodriguez, Rob Zombie

I started thinking about all the hype and general cooler-than-thou hipsterism that surrounds everything Tarantino/Rodriguez/Grindhouse, and things got ugly.

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Werewolf Women of the SS

A post has appeared on Rob Zombie’s MySpace blog claiming that another favorite Grindhouse faux trailer, Werewolf Women of the S.S., is being made into a comic book.

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Michael Madsen in Hell Ride

Take a look at the bad-ass biker film “Hell Ride” that promises lots of blood, bullets, and naked ladies!

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