Summary: “Django Unchained” mixes satire, comedy, action, drama, and violence with the most important of Tarantino’s filmmaking characteristics, his handiness to introduce “unexpected” elements into the narrative.
Excerpt: The time: two years before the Civil War. The place: the deep south. The person: Django (Jamie Foxx) slave being slow walked across to auction in Texas. Or at least he was until his band his stopped by dentist turned bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz (Christolph Waltz) who needs a man who has seen the vile Brittle Brothers in person and can point them out and help take them down. A man like Django.
Conclusion: Tapping into a pre-established legacy within Exploitation Cinema, 'Django Unchained' continues an Italian western tradition where the titular character, played terrifically by Jamie Foxx, issues vengeance and justice in some very brutal ways. Also starring Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Samuel L. Jackson, Quentin Tarantino's latest genre love-letter is a masterful display of style and hyperbole.
Excerpt: I recently had myself a little Quentin Tarantino movie-viewing spree. And that’s saying quite a lot for someone who has a perpetual pile of “to be reviewed…” Blu-Rays sitting next to the TV. But hey, I’m a movie-lover and so it Mr. Tarantino. I can remember the first time I saw Reservoir Dogs , not in the theater but when it came to home video. Of course I saw Pulp Fiction and all subsequent Tarantino films (and I’m even lumping From Dusk ‘Til Dawn in there).
Conclusion: If you love Quentin Tarantino, chances are you will at least like if not outright love Django Unchained . If you're not a fan of Tarantino, there's little doubt you'll be equally unimpressed with this very Tarantino-esque outing. You either go with the Tarantino flow, in which case you're willing to put up with (or actually exult in) Tarantino's quicksilver changes of tone and content, or you spend two and a half hours wondering what exactly you've gotten yourself into.
Excerpt: Quentin Tarantino is without question one of the greatest filmmaker of the modern age. Over 20 years he has helped reinvent the crime genre, thrown traditional structure out the window, and created characters and shepherded performances that will never be forgotten. But with extreme talent and success comes high expectations as we come to Django Unchained , Tarantino’s eighth film (counting Kill Bill as one full feature).
Conclusion: Another strong, sparky and bloody entry in the QT canon. Although, creaking under its running time, it’s not quite as uproariously entertaining as his last pseudo-historical adventure, Inglourious Basterds.
Excerpt: Unbridled violence is unleashed in this Spaghetti Western, teetering between comedy and gore. The profanity and blood flow in a celebration of excess, belying the film's racial consciousness and intelligent commentary on a dark period in American history. Although undermined by elements of self-indulgence, the director also brings to "Django Unchained" a trademark penchant for witty dialogue, sharp storytelling and sublime style. Unshackled and foolishly fun.