Quentin Tarantino is one of today’s most intriguing filmmakers. His films contain some of the most disturbing and most hilarious things moviegoers will see. This has been the case since his first filmReservoir Dogs twenty years ago. Violence, mayhem, sexy women and a quirky sense of humor are what usually comprise a Tarantino film. His latest feature Django Unchained features more of the same but this time, presented in a crazy western package. The film is an insane mix of wild western action and dark, tongue-in-cheek humor.
Django (Jamie Foxx) is a slave in the Deep South circa 1858. He has been forcibly separated from his wife Broomhilda (Kerry Washington) and lives a truly harsh slave life. That is until a bounty hunter by the name of Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz) frees Django and the two of them set out to find Broomhilda and seek vengeance on those who have enslaved her. Broomhilda’s master is a sleazy gambler named Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio) and it is up to Django and Schultz to go stop him.
Django Unchained is a truly mesmerizing film. It contains so many qualities that make it a strong film. First, there is the cast. This is one of the best casts in a movie in a long time. Jamie Foxx plays Django with a fierce heroic intensity that is perfect for the lead role. Christoph Waltz (who is becoming Tarantino’s good luck charm) is without a doubt, the star of this film. He may be credited as a supporting player but his performance is worthy of a lead. His character is just so unorthodox and quirky that each line of dialogue he utters will get your hooked.
Leonardo DiCaprio plays Candie, the villain of the film, something very different from his previous roles. He is slimy and sinister and adds some gripping tension to the plot. Tarantino film regular Samuel L. Jackson adds some humor and class to the proceedings as Candie’s house slave. There are a ton of other supporting actors in the film who provide great humor and tension to the entire production.
Quentin Tarantino’s script is filled with wonderful humor and powerful and intense drama. His words flow like a fine wine and the actors speak them with pure talent. Django Unchained is the perfect blend of action and comedy. You will feel at ease one moment and then scared the next. The film just keeps you guessing. It is this emotional roller coaster that will keep you entertained throughout.
If you are the faint of heart, Django Unchained might be a tad disturbing. There are gunfights, scenes of torture and just random moments of violence. These scenes are raw and at times, kind of gruesome but that’s just how Tarantino operates. Blood and torture aren’t the backbone of the film but they certainly litter the place, so be prepared.
Django and Schultz’s adventure is one for the ages. They have a cool chemistry and a mission that they are mutually invested in. Their journey to find Broomhilda and thwart Candie is filled with dead bodies, kooky comedy and just plain, awesomeness.
Tarantino is the master of film genre tributes. Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction honored crime/gangster films, the Kill Bill’s honored martial arts films and now Django Unchained is a love song to the spaghetti westerns of the 1960s. Tarantino is a filmmaker who can take a known genre and turn it on its head. With humor and violence, the man can make a spectacular film regardless of its genre. Django Unchained is a unique western with a number of fresh and original aspects.
Few films this year have matched the same quality as Django Unchained. It is a fun ride with many twists and turns. Released just in time for awards season, this film will definitely earn a few accolades. If you are a fan of Tarantino and just good movies in general, Django Unchained is one film you can count on. It’s a violent western with attitude, heart and humor.