The two hour forty six minute saga is lengthy, but packed with memorable scenes. It's got western scenery on a grand scale and scenes of madcap comedy involving inept members of the Ku Klux Klan. It's got veritable springs, sprays and gushes of blood, an ocean of fake gore even by Tarantino's standards.
Inspired from various sources including Sergio Corbucci's 1966
film Django, a few scenes remind you; of the
slavery-revenge melodrama that one witnessed in The Legend of
Niger Charlie (1972) and Boss Niger (1975) and of
western cowboy action films that starred Clint Eastwood.
Despite this, Tarantino has skillfully crafted the film with wonderfully taut witty dialogues and the indulgence of his actors.
The visual compositions of Django Unchained are
brilliant. Be it the long shots capturing the scenic beauty of the
locales or mid-shots of the characters with either pan or tilt in
day or night lights, the camera work by cinematographer Robert
Richardson gives a charisma to the film that makes it distinctively
Tarantino's. The soundtrack, which includes the likes of Ennio
Morricone and Jim Croce, is fabulous.
The story of Django Unchained originates in 1858 - two years before the civil war somewhere in Texas. The movie begins on a promising note with a night time confrontation between a wandering German dentist Dr King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), in actuality, a seasoned bounty hunter and some slave traders.
Dr Schultz frees the slave Django (Jamie Foxx) in order to help him
track down three brothers with a price on their heads. Django
proves so useful in this quest that Schultz subsequently takes him
on as a partner and promises, once the winter is over, to help
Django find his wife Brunhilda (Kerry Washington), who has been
sold to one Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio), a notoriously brutal
Together, the bounty hunter and his assistant journey to
Candyland, in Mississippi to meet Calvin, where they pose as
traders so that they could gain entry and rescue the girl. Yes,
en-route, there are few amusing scenes with disturbing violence and
Christoph Waltz as Dr King Schultz steals the show with the agility of his mind, speech and actions. Matching him in style and perfection is Samuel Jackson as Steven, the more-than trusted house slave of Calvin.
Jamie Foxx is near-perfect as Django. He's got the muscular
presence required to portray a man who's been exploited for his
strength. He is also nimble with understated comedic timing to the
buddy-flick aspects of the tale. Bad guy, Leonardo, a pretentious
fool, as the master of Candyland is loathsome, whereas Kerry
Washington as Brunhilda, the German-speaking slave is
Django Unchained is Tarantino's most comprehensive movie yet. It is also his most vital. His storytelling talents match the heft of the tale. Much like his previous movie, Inglourious Basterds, this film offers viewers a space to work through some serious pay-back fantasies.
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Kerry Washington, Walton Goggins, Samuel L Jackson, Don Johnson and Leonardo DiCaprio