Quentin Tarantino has written and directed yet another masterpiece in Oscar nominated Django Unchained. The controversial film has had ratings and opinions of a broad spectrum, but after watching it for myself my only thought afterward was “sheer brilliance”.
Django (Jamie Foxx) is a slave in pre-Civil War era; chained to other slaves, they are forced to walk across the ranges of Texas to their destination. In the dark of night, Dr. Schultz (Christoph Waltz) crosses paths with the slaves and their escorts; Schultz is a bounty hunter tracking down three brothers who are wanted by the government and to his knowledge, Django can point them out to him. With humor, Schultz wishes to buy Django and use him for his own personal agenda, the escorts don’t take a liking to him and before they know it, Django is signed over to Schultz and the other slaves are set free.
Django soon discovers what it is Schultz does, he is unfamiliar with the line of Schultz work but when he is offered his own freedom, money, and a horse to help find the three brothers Schultz is after, how could Django refuse? In short time, it is discovered that Django is a natural bounty hunter, quick with the gun, accurate, and a damn good actor. Schultz takes a liking to Django, he comes to find that when he is set free, Django plans on searching for his wife Broomhilda (Kerry Washington) who was sold separate from the plantation when they tried to escape. Schultz promises Django that if he helps him through the Winter; when the ice melts, he will help Django go to Mississippi and find his wife.
After a successful season of bounty hunting, the two find the whereabouts of Broomhilda’s location; she was sold to Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio) and is currently serving at their plantation Candie Land. Schultz thinks logistics and compiles a backstory to get Django and himself in to the plantation, and in the best possible situation to free Broomhilda and get away without harm. This task proves to be difficult, in dealing with a crazed lunatic in Candie and even more so dealing with the interesting loyal servant of Candie and his family for 76 years, Stephan (Samuel L. Jackson).
Django Unchained is a film that entertains on layers of levels. It is violent, crude, and with strong language; all making this humorous and dramatic story that much more entertaining. Tarrantino even wrote a part for himself which he shows off acting skills of his own. As usual Waltz gives a strong performance earning him a nod for the Best Supporting Actor category of the 2013 Academy Awards. Foxx shows a diverse set of skills in his character with verbal and nonverbal excellence as Django. DiCaprio is convincing as a “bad guy” and adds more arsenal to his resume as a diverse man on camera. His character’s success comes hand in hand with Samuel L. Jackson’s role which takes on a life form of its own.
We see so many films that are good or bad, and once in a while we get that film that is a breath of fresh air, that film is Django Unchained.