Django Unchained Review
Updated on January 4, 2013, 9:04 PM - Written by Tim Buttner
Django Unchained is such an awesome movie! It's one of Quintin Tarantino's best no matter what perceived controversy there is surrounding it. Great performances all around to the cast members in this entertaining, funny, and fulfilling story.
The story is pretty simple: With the help of his mentor, a slave-turned-bounty hunter sets out to rescue his wife from a brutal Mississippi plantation owner. However, it's full of nice complexities and strongly dynamic scenes. It starts with Django (Jamie Foxx) being freed by Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), who doesn't believe in slavery but uses it to his advantage in order to get what he wants: to collect a bounty on some individuals that Django can identify. He then proceeds to connect with Django and train him to be a formidable bounty hunter. And he's instantly touched by Django's story about him and his wife because her name is Broomhilda (Kerry Washington) and she speaks German. It's because her name is similar to the Norse mythological Valkyrie, and Django's plan to rescue her reminds him of a modern day Siegfried that he agrees to help Django. This was a clever and brilliant way for Tarantino to make Django's inner goal affect Schultz's tough and brazen bounty hunter exterior.
Tarantino has matured greatly since his earlier works. Inglorious Basterds was a wonderful treat, and Django continues this. Since I know the Norse legend due to Richard Wagner's famous operas dealing with Der Ring des Nibelungen, it is a fitting way to paint a clear picture of who Leonardo DiCaprio's Calvin Candie is supposed to be: the dragon Fafnir. And indeed DiCaprio plays his character as a disgusting worm of a human being. Hoarding slaves for his pleasure in battles to the death. It is a great performance, and far better than DiCaprio's last foray into the western genre.
Both Jamie Foxx and Christoph Waltz had great chemistry together. I want to see them team up again in movie because all their scenes together were fantastic. Although Waltz also was well matched against DiCaprio. Each gave a perfect performance in perfect casting. And lastly there's Samuel L. Jackson as the equally worm-like slave Stephen. Jackson was magnificent in this role. Marking his fifth collaboration with Tarantino, this role may be the best role that Tarantino has put him in after Jules Winnfield in Pulp Fiction.
The cinematography was great, and worked great in the spaghetti western genre. Tarantino and cinematographer Robert Richardson managed to make visual references to all the great westerns. Paired with a soundtrack very reminiscent of the spaghetti western, even using some music from spaghetti western maestro Ennio Morricone.
I would highly suggest this movie to anyone. I give it top marks and thoroughly enjoyed it. No matter how many times the N-word was uttered or how much gratuitous violence was in the film it was thoroughly entertaining. Go watch this film today.
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