Saturday, October 05, 2019

Django Unchained

Quentin Tarantino is not my favorite director - I don't dislike him, in fact I appreciate that he creates unique concepts and has his own film telling style. Yet, there's always a part of me when watching his films that pictures a young 20-something in film school with an extremely high film budget who's mostly just messing around.

There's always much to be said about things such as film violence. This weekend, for example, Todd Phillip's Joker has come out, with the expected press coverage about the appropriateness of film studios to create violent films depicting realistic violence. These stories are old - I think about Lawrence Kasdan's film Grand Canyon from the early 1990s that explored these exact same things as Steve Martin's character osolates between his moral obligations in the depiction of violence compared with his commercial opportunities to deliver the films people want.

All that to say, Tarantino's depictions of violence are different - the violence is certainly there in blood washed scenes that sort of look like fake blood that might be made in the drama department art set, except - the filming is dramatic, the editing is dramatic, the music is dramatic, and the actors are clearly having a good time.

Rarely do I say "I want to see one of these films by Tarantino, and I suppose in that vein I delayed watching this one, but was forced by the love of others who have positioned this film on the imdb top 250 list in a position that tells me that it's probably not leaving anytime soon (currently positioned at 60, up a couple spots from January of this year when I set out to knock out more of this list).

The film a revisionist a western (the western also being a less than favorite genre) is about Django (Jamie Foxx) trying to reunite with his wife Broomhilda von Shaft, a slave - who incidently also speaks German (played by Kerry Washington). Early on, Django also connects with Dr. King Shultz a German dentist who is also a bounty hunter - played by Christoph Waltz. If that type of premise doesn't get you excited, then what will?

Honestly, I applaud Tarantino for different -- that is meaningful in a world where most of our top grossing films are sequels, remakes, based on comic books, and sometimes all of the above. Which I suppose this to is also a remake - but the spaghetti western from 1966 Django, is certainly a different film - Tarantino frankly is again flouting his film student tone/style.

With frequent cult status, any time a Taranetino film comes out, I expect it to find some love, I just also typically expect that I'll be delayed to come to the table and see it -- but when I do, I will likely find a level of enjoyment (isn't that one of the main goals of film), but the love is usually missing.

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