January 2, 2013

Initial Thoughts on Django Unchained

I decided to start out the new year with some Tarantino. I had tried to go on saturday but it didn’t really work. This time I gave myself more time, and the mall wasn’t nearly as busy. I found my seat in the center of the theater and settled in for some QT.

Going into the film I had conflicting sources of expectation. I loved Inglourious Basterds so I was excited to see whatever Tarantino came out with next. However, initial reviewers didn’t seem to be loving the movie. They might have set the bar way too high. I don’t know. Those reviews did temper my excitement a bit.

Django Unchained delivered. In every respect it exceeded my somewhat lowered expectations. It was a ton of fun. I still think Inglourious Basterds is a better movie. Django wasn’t able to create the tension like the great scenes in Basterds . Django also isn’t nearly as complex. It is Tarantino doing a western, and it was awesome.

Once again Christoph Waltz steals the show. The movie is titled Django Unchained but Waltz’s character is by far the most interesting. In the second half Leo DiCaprio joins them. He is so good as the villian. Jamie Foxx does fine as Django, but it is actually a pretty flat character. I am sure that is by design.

I really enjoyed the first hour of the film. As soon as the movie was over I wanted to watch that part over again. The beginning was more of a traditional western with the Tarantino flare. The rest is good too, but that first hour was pretty brilliant.

If you love Tarantino I don’t see how you could fail to like Django. However, it is not a perfect movie, and I do understand some of the criticism. I’m not going to go into any of that here, but I will save it for another spoiler edition post. Go see Django Unchained, and make sure you cut the eye-holes big enough to receive maximum enjoyment.

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