Friday, 31 August 2012

From Dusk Till Dawn

"From Dusk Till Dawn" (1996, Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino, Dimension Films, A Band Apart, Los Hooligans) is a gore fest action/crime/comedy/horror from Rodriguez and Tarantino.

From the onset, the film appears to be about two criminal brothers who are on the run from the feds and police, and are also in the middle of a heist worth a lot of money if they can get to Mexico and meet their contact, Carlos.

The brothers are Seth Gecko (George Clooney), the smooth, arrogant and haughty 'leader' and his younger and more sinister brother, Richie Gecko (Quentin Tarantino), who is a volatile sex fiend, rapist, murderer and all 'round crazy person!

We meet the brothers as they attack a petrol station/liquor store clerk (John Hawkes) and his only customer, the local Ranger McGraw (Michael Parks) after Richie begins to feel a bit twitchy. I always remember this scene the best, as when I was younger I was particularly intrigued with the 'shot through the hand' bit. Gross!

They move on to a motel, leaving a mess in their wake, and extract the terrified bank cashier lady from their car trunk. And we get to find out just how crazy Richie really is!

Soon the guys need a ride, and some innocent looking 'friends' to help them get across the border, and so they kidnap an ex-minister, Jacob (Harvey Keitel) and his two children, adopted son Scott (Ernest Liu) and daughter Kate (Juliette Lewis). Jacob is having a crisis of faith after his wife died in tragic circumstances and has dragged his kids on the road with him in his motorhome...

After getting over the border, they head to a biker/trucker bar called 'The Titty Twister' which has a lurid and entertaining luminous sign, and wait there drinking 'whisky' (I'm Scottish, I can be snobby about what's whisky and what's not! Although, I drink bourbon myself...) while they wait on Carlos (Cheech Marin, who also plays quite a few parts in this film, I noticed!).

But this bar is not all that it seems, and there is a specific reason for it closing at dawn.... Everyone from the exotic dancers to the Machete dude (Danny Trejo) behind the bar are vampires... everyone except the clientelle, that is! When the feeding frenzy begins, our two murderous thieves, their kidnapped friends, a biker called Sex Machine (Cheech Marin again) and a Vietnam trucker called Frost (Fred Williamson) have to team together as best they can to try to survive.

Will anyone make it out? And when the hell will Carlos get there!?!

A tongue in cheek gorefest with some very 90s SFX and a lot of boobies. One of the sleaziest biker vampire movies on my shelf; it's just hilarious! And isn't it funny how vampire chicks suddenly get really ugly when they let their true nature show?

Danny Trejo makes an excellent vampire man in his little leather... whatever that was mean't to be! A vest? A tunic? Heck knows!

Clooney makes an excellent bad guy in this film, being both threatening and also likeable in that charismatic dickhead kind of a way.

Tarantino is terrifying as the psychotic rapist brother. He's a scary dude! I would not cross him!

Lots of body parts fly, there's a corpse guitar and a shed-load of corny, tongue in cheek violence (to go along with the truly Tarantino-esque beginning scene). Really, the vampires are entertaining and sure get an impressive kill scene, but damn it the humans are way scarier!

I'm sure this film has some kind of message, but all it says to me is that no matter how much of a jackass you are, vampires will eat you...? Oh, and rock music is awesome. And snakes are cool. Yep, deep film...

[Picture: Dimension Films &]