There’s been a lot of hand wringing and gnashing of teeth in the week and a half since Grindhouse whimpered onto the screen. I’d daresay the topic has been beaten more senseless than a Karl Urban starring vehicle and yet, more news continues to eek forth.
As the illustrious Mr. Beaks reported Easter Sunday, word was the Weinstein’s planned to re-release the Grindhouse films as separate experiences- one for the lovers of severed balls, zombies and machine gun prosthetics and the other for fans of bouncy conversation and car murder, where hopefully the twain would meet. Apparently, they made good on their word and tested their way into a few markets with the proposal over the weekend… which yielded the same result as other theaters showing it in three hour blocks, i.e.- crappy. I’m not sure how they expected the results to be any different, a mere seven days after a weak opening, but there you have it.
As a marketing guy who got into marketing because of movies, I can understand the deep-rooted desire to make the film work, but I don’t understand the seemingly assumptive logic used to explain away its failure, or this whole idea of taking something that didn’t work and trying it again. Track records aren’t good for that kind of thing.
I don’t mean to opine on a topic that’s been better opined upon, but objectively, is it so surprising a niche genre movie based on a host of obscure niche genre movies* fails to resonate at all with wide audiences? Fact is, ticket sales bore out the sad truth: only genre/movie geeks like us wanted to see the experimentation based on a hyper-nostalgic fantasy of two filmmakers. I don’t like it. You don’t like it. The Weinstein’s sure as hell don’t like it. But let’s chalk it up to something more legit than some unproven intangible like three hour running time.
So where does that leave Grindhouse? According to sleuthy reporting by JoBlo, apparently waiting for a bare-bones DVD release.
While I may break ranks with my more knowledgeable and esteemed CHUD brethren, I’m pleased to see the Weinsteins pull back on hubris and realize the experiment simply didn’t work. It allows the work to move quickly into the ample and soft bosom of home entertainment, where appreciation and lusty smothering will be more fully met.
*Talking general public here, not the historically steeped film denizens of CHUD.