Django Unchained is a Quentin Tarantino movie that takes place in slave times USA. There isn’t much to say about this film as the story is quite simple. Django (Jamie Foxx), a slave, is freed by forward-thinking european bounty hunter Dr. Shulz. (Christoph Walz) It turns out that Django was separated from his wife and together they embark on an epic quest to rescue Django’s lovely wife from a dangerous plantation. In essence, we’re taken back, fairly explicitly, to the classic European, “prince saves princess in castle,” story but in slave times USA.
Feeling: underwhelmed but entertained.
I am not the biggest Tarantino fan in general, but trying to be objective, I think this is one of his weaker films. It was obvious that he was trying to turn Django into some kind of fairy tale legend with this movie; and that doesn’t excite me all that much. I didn’t feel too attached to Django or his tribulations. I think Jamie Foxx did a weak job of portraying any kind of humanity in his character. In summary, I think there was a general lack of emotion and creativity to the movie. There were, however, some fun moments. For example, all the fun I’m sure the writers had by putting in phrases like “The Right Nigger” and other variations. And you can’t help but enjoy the quasi-biblical revenge scenes Django subjects the poor whiteys to.
True Facts: interesting ethical landscape, and some good acting.
As I mentioned above, this movie almost goes back to an old-testament ethical vibe. Django is completely ethically empowered and exacts “eye for an eye” revenge on the violent slave owners. There is almost no moral conflict going on, and everything is very “black and white” (pun intended) in terms of who is good and who is bad. This is interesting for about five minutes after the movie ends.
The other interesting little commentary that Tarantino threw in; was the fact that the only non-slave anti-slavery voice, Dr. Shulz, is European. This suggests that Americans were unable to realize what they were doing was horrible on their own. Oh Quentin.
As for the acting – I know that Christoph Waltz won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor and I think he did not deserve it. The guy from Amour really should have won that. Waltz played the exact same character as the one he had in Inglorious Basterds and for which he already won an Oscar. Some of the better moments of the film are the ones that feature Leonardo DiCaprio who puts on a really good old southern accent and is very convincing in his role. Bravo Leo.