The $31 Million Flop Tarantino Calls His "Worst Movie" is Now on Netflix

The $31 Million Flop Tarantino Calls His
Image credit: The Weinstein Company, globallookpress

Tarantino may not love this movie, but it certainly holds up well against A24's slashers these days.


  • In 2007, Death Proof was released, a movie by Quentin Tarantino that the director himself considers the worst of his career.
  • The movie is an homage to the grindhouse movies of the 70s and 80s.
  • Despite its commercial and critical failure, the movie is quite funny by modern standards and well worth checking out.

Love Quentin Tarantino's frenetic style or hate it, his work reflects a distillation of both American and global mass culture. He has taken the finest elements of his era's movies and crafted his unique films around offbeat dialogue and gritty action scenes that play on recognizable clichés and tropes.

However, any filmmaker can have ups and downs throughout their career, and even a Hollywood legend like Tarantino is not immune. For example, his impressive track record includes films that are universally recognized as some of the best in the history of cinema in general, as well as some that are quite mediocre.

However, there is one film that was not only a commercial failure at the time of its release, but is considered by Quentin Tarantino himself to be the worst film of his career.

But this movie has its merits, so let's talk about it, especially since it's available on Netflix.

A Tarantino Movie That the Auteur Himself Despise

In 2012, during The Hollywood Reporter's roundtable discussion with David O. Russell, Ben Affleck, Ang Lee, Tom Hooper and Gus Van Sant, Tarantino opened up about one of his films that he considers his worst.

'Death Proof has got to be the worst movie I ever made,' he shared. 'And for a left-handed movie, that wasn't so bad, all right? So if that's the worst I ever get, I'm good. But I do think one of those out-of-touch, old, limp, flaccid-d--k movies costs you three good movies as far as your rating is concerned.'

What Is This Movie About?

Death Proof was released in 2007 as part of the Grindhouse dilogy, a collaboration with Robert Rodriguez consisting of the aforementioned film and the horror comedy Planet Terror. Death Proof told the story of gruesome murders committed by a deranged stuntman, played by Kurt Russell, who used his 'death-proof' stunt car to stalk and kill groups of young women.

Co-starring opposite Russell in the very passable The Bechdel Test movie were Rosario Dawson, Vanessa Ferlito, Jordan Ladd, Rose McGowan, Sydney Tamiia Poitier, Tracie Thoms, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Zoë Bell.

Is It That Bad, Though?

On Rotten Tomatoes, the critics score is 64% — not a low score considering the film is still considered 'fresh' by the aggregator’s standards. Still, it is considered far worse by critics and audiences alike than another film in the Grindhouse series, Planet Terror, which scored 77%. Moreover, the public, no less than Tarantino, often considers Death Proof to be the worst movie of the director's career.

Nevertheless, it is an example of a movie that’s definitely worth seeing for yourself, rather than listening to the opinions of others, even if it is the director himself. For all its flaws, Death Proof stands out in two ways: it pays great homage to the grindhouse horror films of the 70s and 80s, and it also subverts typical tropes of the slasher genre.

The survival of a female character in such films is not uncommon, but it is primarily the privilege of the 'last girl'. But what if a group of women come up with a more cunning plan than the sinister butcher and take their revenge in just as bloody a way?

Such a deconstruction of the genre is now inherent in elevated horror films from A24 like Ti West's X and Pearl, and so Death Proof anticipated a new resurgence of the slasher genre. Unfortunately, it was underestimated even by its creator.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter.