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Villains That Love Being Bad: Stuntman Mike, Death Proof

In the process of developing a personality for the charismatic killer in Quentin Tarantino’s throwback to ‘70s low-budget cinema, Kurt Russell drew inspiration from Bert Lahr’s classic turn as the Cowardly Lion, and it certainly shows. While Mike loves orchestrating massive pileups, it’s the chase that really turns him on–the rush of stalking, outsmarting, and terrorizing his prey. He likes having the advantage–so when one of his would-be victims pulls a gun on him, shifting the balance of power, the cunning hunter transforms into a sobbing, sniveling little pussycat.

[Originally written July 12, 2012.]

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