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Death Proof soundtrack review

From The Quentin Tarantino Archives

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Review: Quentin Tarantino's Southern Fried slasher-car chase-girl gang film uses a variety of really interesting pieces of retro pop music and older film scores for its soundtrack.

(Click here to go back to the Grind House soundtrack page)

  • 1. The Last Race by Jack Nitzsche. This "Wall of Sound" surf guitar instrumental that plays over the opening credits was originally used in the 1965 sci fi teen film "Village of The Giants". It is a rousing piece that prepares us for the twists and turns that are sure to come. It recalls "Miserlou" from Pulp Fiction as well.
  • 2. Baby Its You by Smith. This is a very cool, slinky blue eyed soul cover that was released in 1969. It was originally sung by The Shirelles. This is the introductory song we hear eminating out of Stuntman Mike's car as he trails Jungle Julia, Shanna and Arlene around Austin.
  • 3. Paranoia Prima by Ennio Morricone. From the original score for Dario Argento's 1971 Italian giallo thriller The Cat O' Nine Tails. An eerie ominous track that also recalls 80s American slasher films (like Halloween. It plays whenever Arlene sees Stuntman Mike's creepy death proof muscle car.
  • 4. Planning and Scheming - Eli Roth and Michael Bacall. This is a funny bit of dialogue between Dov (Roth) and his friend Omar (Bacall). They are trying to get Jungle Julia, Arlene and Shanna drunk enough to invite them up to Lake LBJ.
  • 5. Jeepster by T Rex. This is an early 70s countrified glam rock tune that plays in the Texas Chili Parlor. The lyrics fit into the film's car theme perfectly.
  • 6. Stuntman Mike - Rose McGowan and Kurt Russell. Pam (McGowan) asks Warren who this guy Stuntman Mike (Russell) is.
  • 7. Staggolee by Pacific Gas & Electric. We are introduced more closely to Stuntman Mike as this early 70s bluesy rock classic plays on Warren's jukebox. The lyrics are dark and recall murders in The Old West.
  • 8. The Love You Save (May Be Your Own) by Joe Tex. A bluesy song about the darker side of love affairs.
  • 9. Good Love, Bad Love by Eddie Floyd. Another really good soulful blues track.
  • 10. Down In Mexico by The Coasters. A colorful, descriptive song about a bar owner named Joe. NOTE: This track was not featured in the US theatrical cut of the film but is the song that plays during Arlene's lap dance.
  • 11. Hold Tight. by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich. A highly energetic 60s Brit Rock version of the Southern California surf/hot rod sound made popular by bands like Jan & Dean and The Beach Boys. This track plays as Jungle Julia, Arlene, Shanna and Lanna Frank drive up to Lake LBJ. Soon, they are all killed by Stuntman Mike after a head on collision.
  • 12. Sally and Jack (from the Motion Picture Blow Out) by Pino Donaggio. This track was originally used in the 1981 Brian DePalma conspiracy thriller Blow Out. In that film, it is a tragic love theme for the characters Jack (John Travolta) and Sally (Nancy Allen). This track is also used by Tarantino as a love theme for Jungle Julia and her boyfriend Christian Simonsen (who we never see).
  • 13. It's So Easy by Willy Deville. A fast moving rockabilly tune which was originally featured in the 1980 cop thriller Cruising. This track is not featured in the US theatrical cut of Death Proof.
  • 14. Whatever-However - Tracie Thoms and Zoe Bell. A funny little piece of dialogue between Kim (Thoms) and Zoe (Herself) in regards to them playing the dangerous game of Ship's Mast (riding on the hood of a car at high speeds).
  • 15. Riot In Thunder Alley by Eddie Beram. This is a fast paced, drum pounding racing theme from the 60s American International Pictures teen hot rod exploitation film Thunder Alley. It has a great beat accompanied by guitar and sitars. It plays when Stuntman Mike begins to chase Kim, Zoe and Abernathy through the Tennesee countryside.
  • 16. Chick Habit by April March. A heavy modern rock beat plays as the song lyrics warn of the downside of an out of control habit of using and abusing women. This track signals the end for Stuntman Mike and the film. NOTE: This song was also used in the 1999 film "But I'm A Cheerleader".

Reviewed by Pete R. 4/22/07

Music Not Included on the Official Soundtrack

  • Funky Fanfare Music by Keith Mansfield.
  • Introduction from the film Twisted Nerve Score by Bernard Herrmann.
  • Dragon's Claws Music From The Film. Score by Chen Tien Chi and Chow Fook Leung
  • Italia A Mano Armata (Main Theme). Score by Franco Micalizzi.
  • Gangster Story from the film La polizia Incrimina la polizia Assolve. Score by Guido and Maurizio De Angelis.