Django Unchained: Mini Review In A Nutshell
Holy crap, Quentin Tarantino has extraordinary talent. I wish he had something to say. (Additionally: Christoph Waltz got nominated for best supporting actor but Samuel L. Jackson should have been nominated instead.) More (including the most minor of spoilers) behind the cut.
Django Unchained contains two movies. A Slavery Movie (a la “Roots”) and A Cowboy Movie (a la “Buck and the Preacher”). The Cowboy Movie is really, really fun. The Slavery Movie is really, really uncomfortable. (I saw the movie with Parker. He said that he didn’t see the scenes as “uncomfortable” but as “brutal”.) As a QT movie, it contains a number of really good monologues (I’m thinking primarily of Leonardo DiCaprio’s monologue on phrenology) and buckets and buckets of blood.
It’s an exceptionally violent movie. Some of the violence will have you laughing and clapping, some of the violence will have you laughing at the opportunity to finally release the tension that has been building up for the last however many minutes, some of the violence will have you wincing if not covering your face with your hands.
Much like Inglourious Basterds, he takes a period that has a *HUGE* number of taboos associated with it and makes a movie about the movies made about these periods. In the same way that IB took on the Nazis, DU takes on slavery. You’re stuck with a revenge fantasy that tastes sweet on the tongue like honey but is bitter in the stomach.
I’d feel like criticizing QT for making a movie like this one… except, of course, he’s the only one who is making movies like this one.