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Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino
Rosario Dawson, Rose McGowan, Kurt Russell, Josh Brolin
Writing Credits:
Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino

After an experimental bio-weapon is released, turning thousands into zombie-like creatures, it's up to a rag-tag group of survivors to stop the infected and those behind its release.

Box Office:
$67 million.
Opening Weekend:
$11,596,613 on 2624 screens.
Domestic Gross:

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
English Dolby 5.1
French Dolby 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 191 min.
Price: $14.99
Release Date: 10/5/10

&bull. Planet Terror:
• Audio Commentary for Planet Terror with Director Robert Rodriguez
• Audience Reaction Track for Planet Terror
• “10-Minute Film School” Featurette
• “Badass Babes of Planet Terror” Featurette
• “Guys of Planet Terror” Featurette
• “Casting Rebel” Featurette
• “Sickos, Bullets and Explosions” Featurette
• “The Friend, The Doctor and The Real Estate Agent” Featurette
• Poster Gallery
Death Proof:
• “Stunts on Wheels” Featurette
• “Introducing Zoe Bell” Featurette
• “Kurt Russell as Stuntman Mike” Featurette
• “Finding Quentin’s Girls” Featurette
• “The Uncut Version of ‘Baby, It’s You’”
• “The Guys of Death Proof” Featurette
• “Quentin’s Greatest Collaborator” Featurette
Double Dare Trailer
• International Trailer
• International Poster Gallery
• Extended Music Cues
• “10-Minute Cooking School” Featurette
• “Makeup Effects” Featurette
• “Hot Rods” Featurette
• “Production Design” Featurette
• Trailer Bonus
New York Times Talk
• Comic-Con 2006 Panel
• Trailer Contest Winner


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Grindhouse [Blu-Ray] (2007)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (February 25, 2021)

If nothing else, one must give Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez credit for their goofy ambition. In 2007, they joined forces to create Grindhouse, a three-hour, 11-minute double feature meant to emulate cheap drive-in cinema of the Seventies.

Though a minor fan base ate up this nutty premise, the mass audiences stayed away in droves. Grindhouse crashed and burned at the box office. Despite those two prominent directorial names over the marquee, the flick took in a craptacular $25 million.

When Grindhouse initially hit home video, the studio split it into two releases rather than bundle the two films as originally exhibited. This meant separate sets for Tarantino’s Death Proof and Rodriguez’s Planet Terror.

Those discs didn’t simply split the original Grindhouse in half, as they altered the source in a few ways. For one, Grindhouse included “trailers” for non-existent drive-in movies, and the separate discs mostly dropped these.

The Terror disc did include the faux promo for Machete, and that one actually spawned a real movie in 2010. The three other spoof trailers and handful of additional fake ads failed to show up on the Terror and Proof releases.

In addition, both films earned extended versions on their individual sets. The solo Terror spanned about 105 minutes vs. the theatrical’s 91 minutes, though credits accounted for some of the extra 14 minutes.

In addition, the single-movie Proof went 113 minutes, whereas the Grindhouse version lasted 100 minutes. The theatrical Proof includes credits for both that film and Terror as well as about six minutes, 30 seconds of fake trailers and other phony ads.

As such, while the extended Terror probably only adds about 10 minutes of footage, the longer Proof runs about 20 minutes longer in terms of actual movie content. Stick that opening 6:30 worth of “ads” to the extended Proof and it pushes up against two hours.

This Blu-ray allows fans to see Grindhouse as intended at theaters – original aspect ratio and all. While both halves of Grindhouse went 2.35:1 originally, Terror opted for 1.78:1 on its solo home video release.

I always assumed that occurred because Rodriguez preferred those dimensions and he only framed Terror for 2.35:1 so it’d match Proof. This disc brings the movie back to its theatrical setting.

Because I already offered detailed takes on Terror and Proof in my individual reviews, I won’t rehash that information here. To check out my longer thoughts, please click the links above.

I will discuss how the experience differs when seen as part of Grindhouse, though, and not just because we get shorter versions of the films. When packaged as a whole, the two movies play differently for a variety of reasons.

For one, Grindhouse allows for an experience closer to the drive-in double feature it intended to depict. Of course, you could watch the two back to back on your own, but they don’t go down quite the same way if viewed in that manner.

It also seems fun to watch the two together because they connect in amusing ways. Some actors – like Tarantino himself – appear in different roles across the two, and others play the same parts. That adds a wink at the audience that manifests more readily when we see the films all as one package.

I think the shorter Terror works better as well. It’s the more superficial movie of the pair, so a longer version doesn’t make it better.

Indeed, the 91-minute Terror feels better paced than the extended cut. It doesn’t wear out its welcome and it packs a stronger punch in this edition.

On the other hand, I prefer the longer Proof. Unlike the wholly campy and over the top Terror, Proof delivers a slow burn sort of movie, one that benefits from a more drawn-out affair. The extended Terror feels long for long’s sake, but the expanded Proof feels like a more accurate depiction of Tarantino’s original wishes.

That said, I think the film’s integration into the Grindhouse concept at least partially compensates for what we lose from the extended Proof. While I prefer the extended cut, the shorter one still works fine.

As such, Grindhouse turns into my preferred way to watch these movies. The two films link together enough that it’s simply best to watch them as one package and not separately.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B+/ Bonus A-

Grindhouse appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. How in the world do I objectively critique a film with so many intentional flaws? Carefully, I guess.

As the prior statement implied, the major issue here came from print defects. Grindhouse wants to look like a flick that’s been run through the projector about 2000 times.

That means plenty of blemishes, scratches, streaks, breaks, gaps and misfires. Every single one was put there on purpose, so it becomes a mistake to really call them “print defects” – they’re stylistic choices. I can’t say they distract because they fit the goofy nature of the production, but they certainly crop up with great frequency.

Otherwise, Grindhouse looked quite good. Sharpness only occasionally betrayed any concerns.

A few shots came across as a little soft, but the majority of the flick seemed well-defined and concise. No jagged edges or shimmering materialized, and I noticed no edge enhancement.

Colors tended to be a bit oversaturated and heavy, but this was another stylistic choice. Toxic green was the dominant hue, all intended to match the poison gas.

The movie wanted a dense Seventies feel and it achieved that goal. Overall, the hues appeared pretty warm and rich, and they matched the tone of the movie.

Blacks were deep and dense, and shadows showed really nice delineation. Because so many of the “flaws” were intentional, I couldn’t fault the transfer for them. This was a solid reproduction of the film.

As for the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack of Grindhouse, it also succeeded – though I’d have preferred a more limited scope. Personally, I think the flick should’ve better embraced its Seventies inspirations and gone with a straight mono mix.

That’s what a movie of this one’s ilk would’ve boasted 45 years ago. The decision to give it a worn-out Seventies look but a modern sound didn’t make sense to me.

Despite my mild disappointment with that choice, I can’t knock the results, as the track seemed very strong. The soundfield boasted many opportunities to open up the action, and it did so well.

With all the gunfire, explosions and other moving elements, the effects made sure to put us in the center of the mayhem. All five channels received good usage, as the track blasted at us from start to finish. This was an active, involving soundfield.

At all times, audio quality excelled. Speech was consistently natural and concise, without edginess or other issues.

Music sounded terrific, as both songs and score seemed lively and dynamic. Effects fell into the same range. Those elements were accurate and vivid. I found a lot to like in this mix.

I did have to deduct some points here due to the absence of a lossless soundtrack. This choice surprised me, especially because the older Blu-rays for Terror and Proof went with lossless audio.

As we shift to the extras, we begin on Disc One with a Planet Terror audio commentary from director Robert Rodriguez. He provides a running, screen-specific chat.

Rodriguez starts with a few notes about the Machete trailer before he gets into the script and its development, working within the “grindhouse” motif, cast, characters and performances, music and editing, sets and locations, changes made for the longer cut of the film, effects, and a few stories.

I really enjoyed past Rodriguez commentaries, and this one continued that streak. I do have to admit, however, that Rodriguez doesn’t provide the same whirlwind fact-a-second tour we usually hear.

He’s still informative throughout the chat, but he goes silent more often than normal – primarily because he almost never slows in his other commentaries – and he just seems a little less involved than normal.

Regard these criticisms as nit-picks, though, as even half-speed Rodriguez is still more interesting than 99 percent of the other directors out there. This is another good chat with plenty of useful notes.

(I do hope someone told him that an “anecdote” is a story, not a shot used to cure an illness, though. It’s a little embarrassing when he says “anecdote” instead of “antidote” twice!)

Another audio option comes to us via an audience reaction track alongside Terror. This lets you feel like part of the crowd as you watch the flick accompanied by the recorded hoots and hollers from a Terror screening.

And when I say “you”, I mean “you”, as in “not me”. If I watch to watch a movie at home, I don’t need to hear the reaction of some yahoos. Anyway, it’s there if you want it.

Over on Disc Two, we find old and new extras, and these split into various domains. For pre-existing Planet Terror materials, we start with 10-Minute Film School. This actually runs 11 minutes, 50 seconds as Rodriguez as he discusses various effects like Cherry’s leg, aging the film and tints, stunts and a few other visual elements.

Though much of the information repeats from the commentary, the presence of demo footage makes “School” valuable. We get to see the different stages and work done to bring the elements to life. The combination of good notes and cool footage allow “School” to become a strong program.

For the 11-minute, 49-second The Badass Babes of Planet Terror, we hear from Rodriguez, and actors Rose McGowan, Marley Shelton, Stacy Ferguson, Electra Amelia Avellan and Electra Isabel Avellan.

“Babes” looks at the movie’s female characters and the actors who play them. Again Rodriguez repeats some info from his commentary, but the show broadens out enough to become engaging and useful.

Next we learn about The Guys of Planet Terror. In this 16-minute, 30-second piece, we find remarks from Rodriguez, McGowan, Shelton, producer/actor Quentin Tarantino, and actors Freddy Rodriguez, Naveen Andrews, Josh Brolin, Michael Biehn, Jeff Fahey and Tom Savini.

“Guys” offers a male version of “Babes”. It offers the same pros and cons, so it’s another good show.

Casting Rebel goes for five minutes, 38 seconds and features Rodriguez, Shelton, Brolin and actor Rebel Rodriguez. We hear a little about how Rodriguez cast his own son in the role and the kid’s performance. There’s nothing much new in this short piece, as most of the info comes up during the commentary.

After this we go to the 13-minute, 16-second Sickos, Bullets and Explosions: The Stunts of Planet Terror. We hear from Robert Rodriguez, McGowan, Shelton, Freddy Rodriguez, stunt coordinator Jeff Dashaw, and special effects coordinator John McLeod.

The featurette looks at various stunts, some weapons training, and other action elements. Plenty of good behind the scenes footage helps make this another fun and informative piece.

Finally, The Friend, The Doctor and The Real Estate Agent fills six minutes, 40 seconds with notes from Robert Rodriguez, Shelton, Brolin and actors Skip Reissig and Dr. Felix Sabates.

We hear about some of the non-professionals who act in the movie. Once more, Rodriguez’s commentary renders this one somewhat superfluous. It’s fine on its own, but you won’t find much that you don’t already know.

In the Poster Gallery, we find 35 stills. Most of these cover Terror, but we also get a few ads for Machete, the then-non-existent flick advertised during Grindhouse.

As we shift to the pre-existing Death Proof extras, Stunts on Wheels: Legendary Drivers of Death Proof goes for 20 minutes, 39 seconds as it offers notes from director Quentin Tarantino, stunt coordinator Jeff Dashnaw, stunt people Buddy Joe Hooker, Tracy Keehn Dashnaw, Terry Leonard, Chrissy Weathersby and Steve Davison, and actors Kurt Russell and Tracie Thoms.

The show tells us about the stunt people, their work on the flick and the various stunts – mostly in the driving domain, of course. “Drivers” offers a decent look at these areas. It gives us some nice shots from the set, and we learn a bit about the stunts and related challenges.

Unfortunately, it comes with an awful lot of praise and often just talks about how good – and tough – the stunts are. We get enough useful material to make it worthwhile, but it’s not as rich as I’d like.

We learn about one of the lead actors in the eight-minute, 57-second Introducing Zoë Bell. It features notes from Tarantino, Hooker, Russell, and actors Zoë Bell, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and Rosario Dawson.

We hear how the stunt woman became an actor here and the issues she faced. I like this show since it lets us know how Tarantino developed the part for Bell and how she fared in the flick. It still comes with too much praise, but it provides a nice look at Bell.

Another actor-based featurette comes to us with Kurt Russell as Stuntman Mike. The nine-minute, 32-second piece includes remarks from Tarantino, Russell, and Dawson.

The piece looks at why Russell got the role as well as character elements and aspects of his performance. I like the parts that examine the concept of the character and what made Russell good for the role, but we still get too much praise through the piece. It’s a good but not great featurette.

Finding Quentin’s Gals goes for 21 minutes, 13 seconds, and includes statements from Tarantino, Dawson, Thoms, Russell, Winstead, Bell, and actors Sydney Poitier, Vanessa Ferlito, Jordan Ladd. We hear about casting the various actresses, their characters and performances, and a few other cast notes.

The parts in which we learn how Tarantino found the women and melded their roles for them are the best. Inevitably, we get some happy talk, but the content makes this one pretty good.

During the eight-minute, 14-second The Guys of Death Proof, we hear from Tarantino, Ladd, Poitier, and actors Eli Roth, Omar Doom, and Michael Bacall.

“Guys” acts as a male-centered version of “Gals”, though it’s less substantial just because the movie includes no significant roles for men outside of Stuntman Mike. Still, it’s a good companion piece and it provides more fun notes about casting.

For the final featurette, we get Quentin’s Greatest Collaborator: Editor Sally Menke. The four-minute, 36-second piece offers notes from Tarantino as he discusses the film’s editing process.

There’s not much information on display, though. Tarantino throws out a few editing issues, but most of the piece shows the cast outtakes as they greet Menke; she’s stuck away from the set, so this is a way to keep in touch. It’s cute but not terribly informative.

In addition to a trailer for Double Dare - a documentary about stuntwomen that includes Zoë Bell – we get The Uncut Version of “Baby, It’s You” Performed by Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

This one-minute, 46-second clip shows the actor’s a capella crooning in its entirety. It’s not particularly fascinating as anything other than a way for Winstead to audition as a singer for other movies.

We get the international trailer for Death Proof as well as a Poster Gallery with 17 images.

The disc concludes with Extended Music Cues, which provides longer versions of two score segments in the movie. It lasts 10 minutes, 28 seconds.

With that we head to the “all-new” Grindhouse bonus domain, one that also splits into movie-separate areas. Under Terror, we find Robert Rodriguez’s 10-Minute Cooking School.

During this eight-minute, 30-second segment, Rodriguez teaches us how to make “award-winning” Texas barbecue. I don’t cook and I’m a vegetarian, so I have no idea if this recipe works, but it’s there if you want it.

The Makeup Effects of Planet Terror spans 12 minutes, two seconds and features Rodriguez, Savini, Shelton, Freddy Rodriguez, McLeod, and special makeup effects designer Greg Nicotero.

Unsurprisingly, “Effects” covers the topic described in its title. It becomes a satisfying look at that material.

As we shift to the new Proof materials, The Hot Rods of Death Proof goes for 11 minutes, 46 seconds and includes notes from Tarantino, Dashnaw, McLeod, production designer Steve Joyner, and art director Caylah Eddleblute.

Here we examine the movie’s vehicles and chase sequences. We find a lot of good info here.

From Tennessee to Texas: The Production Design of Death Proof lasts eight minutes, one second and involves Tarantino, Eddleblute, and Joyner. They touch on sets and locations in this informative reel.

Trailer Bonus digs into a bunch of different areas, and we start with an extended Werewolf Women of the SS trailer. The longer promo runs 4:59, and we can view it with or without commentary from director Rob Zombie. He brings a good overview in his limited time.

In the same vein, we get a “Making of” for the SS trailer. It goes for eight minutes, 48 seconds and features Zombie, producer Andy Gould, and actors Sheri Moon Zombie, Bill Moseley, Tom Towles, Michael Deak, and Udo Kier.

“Making” gives us some general thoughts about the shoot of the trailer. It offers some decent glimpses of the production but seems a little superficial.

Another extended trailer, this time for Don’t (1:35). It also comes with a commentary from director Edgar Wright, as he brings as much as he can in 95 seconds. Wright can pack more into a short space than most filmmakers can with much more time.

More about Don’t follows, and we find a “Storyboards/Trailer Comparison”. It runs 1:40 and shows the art in the upper left corner and the movie in the bottom right. It offers a good look at the design versus the execution.

Wright provides commentary for this topic as well. As usual, he gives us useful notes.

“The Making of Don’t” runs nine minutes, 40 seconds and features Wright, art director Dick Lunn and Mark Gatiss, Simon Pegg and Katie Melua. They give us some basics about the shoot and we see footage from the production in this solid little reel.

Though we only see one Don’t poster, the segment lasts five minutes, 54 seconds since it offers extended score from David Arnold. Don’t wraps with a “Storyboard Still Gallery” that provides 63 images and becomes a good collection.

This area ends with “The Making of Thanksgiving Trailer”, a six-minute, 27-second featurette that brings notes from co-writer/director Eli Roth and special makeup effects Mike McCarty. Though they offer some comments, we mostly get footage from the set. This is a fun reel, though not as informative as the Don’t program.

Lastly, “Additional Bonus” presents three segments. Hosted by Lynn Hirschberg, a New York Times Talk fills one hour, four minutes, 36 seconds and presents a live panel with Tarantino and Rodriguez.

The filmmakers talk about the grindhouse concept and the development of the film, cast and performances, aspects of their relationship, some issues connected to Grindhouse, and other elements of their careers.

Longtime friends, Rodriguez and Tarantino interact well, and they give us plenty of good comments. Tarantino’s praise for Harvey Weinstein plays differently now than in 2007 – as does the producer’s brief appearance here - but that’s not a fatal flaw.

Comic-Con 2006 brings another panel. This 23-minute, 35-second reel features Tarantino, Rodriguez, Shelton, McGowan, Dawson, Poitier, Winstead, and Bell,

“Comic-Con” looks at the project’s roots and push toward the screen, aspects of the movies and the filmmakers’ connection, and other notes about the film and those involved.

The addition of the actors expands this panel past the dimensions of the Times discussion, but we still mainly hear from the directors, and we also get some of the same notes. Nonetheless, it becomes a pretty good chat, one made a little more intriguing because Death Proof hadn’t actually entered formal production yet.

Finally, Hobo With a Shotgun gives us another fake trailer, but this one came from amateurs and won a contest. Directed by Jason Eisener, Hobo goes for two minutes.

If Hobo won the competition, I’d hate to see the losers. It seems amateurish and lacks the verisimilitude of the fake trailers in Grindhouse. Still, it’s cool to view as a novelty.

Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino united for a clever double feature via Grindhouse. Both movies entertain and this turns into a cool package. The Blu-ray offers intentionally flawed picture, strong audio and a solid compilation of bonus materials. Grindhouse becomes a fun night at the throwback movies.

Viewer Film Ratings: 4 Stars Number of Votes: 2
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