“What’s your name?” “Django. The D is silent.”
Django Unchained is an American Western Epic set two years before the American Civil War. It follow Django, a freed slave turned bounty hunter, and his attempts to find and free his wife, who had previously been sold to an unknown plantation.
It is in every way a Quentin Tarantino movie. It is heart-wrenchingly violent and bloody. Almost everyone dies. I’m generally someone with a strong stomach when it comes to movies, but in this case, there were certain scenes that even I had to cover my eyes for. I simply could not watch.
While certain scenes were hard to watch, I think this movie will be remembered for its many witty quotes. A personal favourite:
Dr. King Schultz: “How do you like the bounty hunting business?”
Django: “Kill white people and get paid for it? What’s not to like?”
While the film does a wonderful job portraying the horrifying reality of slavery, the brutality of plantations, the ruthlessness of slave owners and the racial discrimination that black people faced, the film does have many historical inaccuracies. Many language terms and references made throughout the film did not emerge until well after the period of the film. Additionally, many of the materials in the film had not yet been invented – including dynamite, cigarettes, sunglasses, beer taps, and straws. The film is definitely historical fiction – while it is set in the past, it in no way reflects real life events.
A particularly interesting aspect was the music choice for certain scenes. The music was not at all what you would expect, but somehow fit perfectly. I suppose in historical fictions you assume the music will be era-appropriate and take a backseat to the plot, but Tarantino adding in heavy gangster rap really added to the intensity of the film.
The film has won many accolades, including Academy Awards for Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor.
Overall, I would say this is a good movie. Slightly predictable, but the wit and humour throughout easily make up for it. So if you’re considering seeing it, go for it. But if you don’t like violence, you might want to forgo the popcorn.
This post is dedicated to Connor Sweazey, a true gentleman and a scholar.