Thursday, February 17, 2011

Death Race 2000

Next weekend Circle Cinema is screening one of my favorite "drive-in" movies--Death Race 2000. My father, in an inspired bit of genius parenting, actually took me to see this movie in the late 1970s at the drive-in. I don't often say this but here goes: thank you Dad! How else was I going to witness the cross-country road race carnage and unclothed females if not on the screen of the drive-in in Muskogee, Oklahoma if not taken by my father? I'd never heard of this film before I saw it, but I've never forgotten it as it hit my young mind like a meteor.

This poster (which I also love! How could you not love this piece of 1970s pulp cinema artwork?) completely sums up the b-film aspirations of Death Race 2000. Produced by drive-in maestro Roger Corman, the film stars David Carradine as a leather clad race car driver competing against others (including Sylvester Stallone) in a contest that involves being the first to get across the country while ALSO running over as many people along the way. You actually get points based on who it is you kill--old people get certain points, harder to hit people are assigned a higher point value. Awesome. 

So if you are in the Tulsa area and want to see one of the best "carsploitation" films on the screen, next weekend you'll have your chance. If you have kids (the younger the better), bring them and scar their impressionable psyches like my dad did to mine. It seems I've turned out fairly respectable. Seeing it helped establish a childhood path for me grow into a film geek, which led to hundreds of films a year starting in my teenage years, which led to bad grades in my teenage years, which led to a delayed start to college post-teenage years, which led to a degree in film studies, which led me to writing about a film in various avenues over the past 15 years, which led me to start and write away in obscurity on CineRobot, which has led to me becoming an official member of the film critic fellowship and press at Urban Tulsa. Dad didn't make that bad of a decision on this one. 

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