Directed by Quentin Tarantino
Starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo diCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson, Walton Goggins, James Remar, and Laura Cayoutte.
Quentin Tarantino. Pretty much heralded as a game changer when he burst onto the scene in the early 1990s. Defined the independent film movement as we know it today. Proclaimed the first filmmaker of the “video generation,” in that he got his knowledge of filmmaking from watching movies over and over and over again on VHS. As we all know, he seems to have a fondness for the exploitation films of the 1970s, and those influences come through in his latest film, Django Unchained, which has bits of blaxploitation and Spaghetti Western all thrown in. Will the greatest filmmaker today retain his title?
The film is the story of Django, a slave in the USA, two years before the Civil War. One day, he is purchased and promptly freed by Dr. King Schultz, a German dentist-turned-bounty hunter. Seems Schultz is after a big bounty, and Django is one of the few that can identify these criminals. The two quickly become an ace bounty hunting duo, and Schultz resolves to help Django to find Django’s wife. Their investigation soon finds that Django’s wife is being held by a ruthless plantation owner known as Calvin Candee, and soon Django and Candee are headed to a showdown with the life of Django’s wife hanging in the balance.
What I Liked
The usual Tarantino flourishes are in play, in the dialogue and in the shootouts. Ye gods, the shootouts. This has to be Tarantino’s bloodiest film, not necessarily his most violent. Every gunshot just spews out buckets of blood. Throw in some very genuinely funny moments, and some choice cameos, and you have some very fun moments.
What I Didn’t Like
This is the first Tarantino film I saw that really seemed to drag in places. I found myself checking my watch several times throughout the film. I think it probably could have been shorter by about a half-hour.
Despite feeling longish, this is vintage Tarantino, and will no doubt please fans of his work. It please this fan!