My written review of the 2012 Quentin Tarantino movie, "Django Unchained."
"Kill white folks, and get paid for it? What's not to like about it?"
Django to his bounty hunter partner.
The name of this movie goes without saying.
For decades, there have been many featured films depicting its versions surrounding the evils, atrocities, and overall immoralities of slavery. Some were based on true stories, written novels, (often by survivors and witnesses) and others by filmmakers who're conscious to such ungodly inhumanity.
I've watched numerous films directed by Quentin Tarantino: Jackie Brown, a little of Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill Vol 1, and Kill Bill Vol 2, just to name a few. When I purchased "Django Unchained" and watched it for the first time since its release in 2012, I felt compelled to write a review of this movie.
"Well, the way the slave trade deals in human lives for cash, a bounty hunter deals in corpses."
Nearly every single tool implemented and associated with slavery was featured in this film: Whippings, slave transport, torture, forced obedience, cold-blooded murder, and of course, purchase. There was even a scene where two slaves were pitted to fight each other to death, for the purposes of profit and entertainment like a cockfight.
Seeing half-naked African-American men chained together, and forced to follow their "white slave masters" graphically grabs an audience, in slavery films, and takes us back in time. Some of us immediately turn away from viewing such gruesome images. When Dr. King Schultz, (Actor Christoph Waltz), a German bounty hunter stares in astonishment at the severely scarred back of Django (Actor Jamie Foxx) I knew right then and there he sympathized with the slaves.
Dr. Schultz represented the worst kind of killer: Friendly, witty, clever, bold, brave, manipulative, and unpredictable. His purchase/rescue of Django from the hands of his masters was a clear indication of this fact. Throughout the film, Dr. Schultz begins to empower Django, and even teaches him to be an expert marksmanship, as a gunslinger.
The film had a bit of spaghetti western satire gunslinger..........Quentin Tarantino style! The more I watched this movie, I began to see him in a more brighter light than ever before, and beyond a filmmaker. Tarantino films are known for its non-linear and satirical storylines. A mock style violence format, with a comedic theme making them very hilarious, and serious at the same time.
This particular he directed TRULY outdid himself on this one. Despite the criticisms, and enormous reactions to the movie (including the heavy usage of the word, "nigger.") it went on to gross over $400,000,000 Box Office, worldwide, and was nominated for at least four Academy Awards.
His highest grossing film yet, and for good reason!
"They ain't never seen no nigger on a horse before."
For two gunslinging men, one white and one black traveling in 1858's "Deep Dirty South" killing white southern slave owners is a sight for sore eyes, indeed. In reality, both would've been caught, tortured, and hung by the nearest tree. In the movie, both were very bold and brave towards achieving their goals: Schultz as a bounty hunter, and Django seeking to rescue his wife from a ruthless slave owner.
"Not while I have my freedom. Not while I have my gun."
Actors Don Johnson and Leonardo Di Caprio really rocked their roles as southern slave owners. Johnson as "Big Daddy" and Di Caprio as "Calvin Candie." Candie possessed characteristics that would be deemed as scary for an owner of slaves, with a gangster demeanor: Witty, charming, ruthless, persuasive, business savvy, and cold-blooded.
Candie displayed how coldblooded he truly is when he ordered his runaway slave to be mauled to death, by dogs upon discovering he was no longer a profitable pit fighter. One of my all-time favorite actors, Samuel L. Jackson role as a "Black Slaver" of other slaves, named Stephen came quite as a shock to me considering he often played straightforward, no-nonsense style of acting.
For everyone (especially black people) knows the absolute "integrity" of an "Uncle Tom" or a "sellout" as they're often referred to. A black slave who's the white slave owner's "right hand man" or "pet" (as he's led to believe) who's allowed special privileges, gifts, and rewards in exchange for being responsible in keeping the others in line.
Enticed into a "life of luxury" to embrace a savage system of oppression.........even embracing his white slave master himself. Jackson's makeup of his character is that of the "black face" was an interesting metaphor of a black man wishing he was white himself.
Let's just say Django was very happy to oblige him in the end!
To all the criticisms, race fanatics, hater club members, and ignorance surrounding this film, I this from the heart. Step outside your own mind for a moment, and step inside Tarantino's mind for a moment. Writing anything, ESPECIALLY a script for a movie can be difficult. Django Uncjained, I'm sure was even more difficult for him due to the history of slavery and racism.
Racism is slavery in of itself.
For a white man to write, script, and direct in his film regarding racism and slavery, in a spaghetti western style sort of way is pretty fantastic. The energy, the emotion, the passion, and psychology shown of how an enslaved and persecuted black slave suddenly became empowered enough (with a little guidance) to fight for his life, rescue his wife, and take back his own freedom.
If someone like Quentin Tarantino can come THAT close to consciousness of one's culture...........them how many others can be "unchained" to do the same with a free mind?
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