Hell Ride (2008)
Written and directed by Larry Bishop

Just as True Romance tried to strike while the Pulp Fiction iron was hot, Hell Ride comes along in the wake of Grindhouse-mania. Except that there is no such thing as Grindhouse-mania, being that Grindhouse wasn't terribly good, and also, Hell Ride is no True Romance.

Hm, re-reading that, I'm not sure which movies I was praising and which I was dissing. Not the first time. Anyway, I sometimes suspect that one of Quentin Tarantino's career goals, beyond the films that he actually directs, is to create the illusion that he is actually the one behind all cult movies. It's no secret that his heart is more with the Ilsa movies than with anything by Coppola. But he really blurs the line when he not only re-releases actual period stuff like Switchblade Sisters, but also facilitates faux-retro stuff like Hell Ride. At a certain point, Joe Netflix is simply going to assume that both are Tarantino films, in the same way I assumed I Love You, Man was directed by Judd Apatow.

Hell Ride is an intentionally C-grade biker film written and directed by Tarantino favorite Larry Bishop, and it has all the trappings of a Tarantino feature. Minus the writing. And story. And acting. In fact, Hell Ride is about equally Tarantino and Skinamax.

As much as I wanted to like it, I had to admit about thirty minutes in that it was pretty insufferable. Bringing Dennis Hopper into a movie like this only makes it more of a groaner. And while it was hard not to be a little jolted by David Carradine's death scene – in one of his final film appearances, he's tied up and strangled to death – the fact that this is about the only real point of interest for Hell Ride should tell you something.

Review by Black Bozionelos