Django Unchained (2012 film)

It's never good when you can just look at a movie poster and know exactly what happens.

It’s never good when you can just look at a movie poster and know exactly what happens.

Sigh. Oh, Quentin. Just like my previous article on the G.A.S. Index, there must be something with fresh creativity taking a dive once you hit a certain age in life. This is the first time I’ve seen clear signs of a downward turn from Mr. Tarantino. Let me begin by declaring that I am a fan of much of his previous work. But, this was some kind of watered down hybrid regurgitation of his prior filmmaking – just using a new setting and characters. “Django Unchained” was less of a peanut butter and chocolate revelation, and more of a flaccid Frankenstein with Tourette’s. While we still got treated to a tension packed soliloquy from a menacing bad guy amidst some kind of meal (as we have in all his other films), it lacked the unpredictable freshness of the intertwined storylines that we’ve come to appreciate from him. Speaking of which, based on this repeated theme, I’m guessing his family dinners growing up must have been a bizarrely fucked up experience for him. He might want to talk to someone about that. The bottom line is : he needs to pick either his over the top Grindhouse/Dusk Til’ Dawn style, or go with his darker, more slick Pulp Fiction/Inglorious Basterds method of delivery. He can’t simply throw them together. Or, maybe he can, but this wasn’t a successful blending and he needs to try again.

The acting was terrific – great casting and great performances. There were a few “haha” yukks and a few “eewww” yucks as well. The beginning of the movie was much stronger than the ending. I felt quite intrigued as a got to know Django(Jaime Foxx) and Dr. King Schultz(Christoph Waltz). In particular, the first few scenes are quite gripping and amusing at the same time. But, as the film wore on, it became quite apparent where this was all headed. A predictable rap-blasting montage of white devil carnage. Not that there’s anything so bad about that, but I like a little dinner with my dessert. Consequently, I left feeling quite “blah” about the whole thing.

This is how I felt inside as the credits rolled.

Sam displays a physical manifestation of how I felt inside as the credits rolled.

Usually, I have a lot more to say about a given subject. But, in the name of artistic Hammurabism, I’ll end my article with the same creativity and substance that Quentin used in Django – Eh, it was okay.

Overall Rating : 5.5/10

– JA