The DPS Report: ‘Django Unchained’ Review

Django Unchained
Directed and Written by Quentin Tarantino
Starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson
Official Web Site
Rated R | 165 Minutes
Release Date: Dec 25th, 2012

It’s been about 3 years since Quentin Tarantino gave us his greatest masterpiece (he even stated it in the movie), Inglorious Basterds. The big question we all have, could he follow that up with another great film in Django Unchained?

I have no previous experience with the Django series, although I am tempted to head down to Chicago, as the Music Box Theatre is showing the original this weekend as a midnight show. But I am not sure it is needed to fully appreciate it, just going to miss out on little nods throughout the movie. But that was my Harry Potter experience, and I was still able to enjoy it.

Enough of the back story, let’s get to the movie. It follows the adventures of a slave named Django, played by Jamie Foxx, and a bounty hunter named Dr. King Schultz, played by our favorite bad guy from Inglorious Basterds, Christoph Waltz. Our bounty hunter needs Django to help track down his latest bunch of bad guys, but surprisingly that is taken care of rather quick, and ends up being the two of them, searching for Django’s wife, played by Kerry Washington. Their journey leads them to Calvin Candie, played by Leonardo Dicaprio, a very wealthy plantation owner whose staff includes a very cranky old man servant, played by Samuel L Jackson.

Because this is a Tarantino film, you kind of know what to expect: some long monologues, some great music (although this one seems to be lacking those memorable tunes), and some over the top violence. And with the topic of slavery, going to be full of racist dialogue, which may offend some people. I don’t agree with it, but you have to remember that is how people spoke in those times, although it may be a little more extreme at times.

I do have to say that both all parties involved are great in this film. You once again can’t help enjoying every second that Waltz is on the screen, and a very nice duo with Foxx. And it’s great to see DiCaprio as a bad guy, and boy does he play it well. For me, even though Foxx gets top billing, it’s once again Waltz who steals the show.

I would say that overall I enjoyed this movie, but it fails in comparison to Inglorious Basterds, in my opinion. And one of those reason, is the run time, at almost three hours, I can say that I have had my share of three hour movies. First The Hobbit and now this. I will say I never looked down at my watch, but there was a point near the end, where they could have easily cut out a section, and got us to the finale a little quicker. A little trimming here and there, would have made it a little more enjoyable. I can also say I was a little disappointed in the music, some decent tunes throughout the movie, but was thrown off by a few rap songs. Although the hipster dude in front of me at the theater, felt the need to start bobbing his head and had to resist the urge to flail his arms, like he was at a rap show. I can remember having various songs from Basterds stuck in my head, and you can’t forget about the amazing Pulp Fiction soundtrack.

This is one you should go out and see, and it’s most likely one I will end up buying on Blu-ray when it comes out. Tarantino is one of those directors, that even when he has a somewhat bad movie, it’s still better than most of the crap that comes out. And if you are a fan of his, I am sure you have already seen it, so there is no need to convince you. But for those that aren’t fans of his, I am not sure this will be the movie to change your mind. But like I said, still a solid movie, it may just be that my expectations were a little too high coming off from Basterds.

And as an added bonus, for those that have seen this movie, does this clip from Fletch Lives, remind you of a certain part of this movie. Not pointing it out negatively, just thought they were both amusing and funny scenes.


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