Django’s unchained, but Waltz and DiCaprio steal the show

© 2012 – The Weinstein Company

The ‘D’ is silent

By Angela Espinoza, Arts Editor


Quentin Tarantino is the greatest. He’s been the greatest for 20 years—even when he was young and only semi-crazy, he was the greatest. So let’s stop wasting time pretending like his latest film, Django Unchained, isn’t another great film that makes Tarantino the greatest.

Django (Jamie Foxx) is a slave in the 1800s whose wife (Kerry Washington) was taken from him and sold at a slave auction. In comes Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), riding on horseback with his little dentist cart in tow, freeing the shit out of our titular hero. The men then make a pact to work together and get Mrs. Django back into her man’s manly man arms. Then bam, Calvin J. Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio), owner of “Candieland,” the biggest plantation around, comes into play, for Candie is the current owner of Django’s wife. Then, for lack of a better term, shit gets cray.

Everything about this film is so practical and beautiful and amazing to look at and listen to that there’s an unprecedented amount of perfect. And yet, some very important factors fall flat.

First though, let’s focus on the good. Django Unchained is one of Tarantino’s funniest movies, which is saying a lot. Every other line is hilarious, partially because of the immense use of a word I will never say here, but is amazing to hear every time because of the weight it carries outside of the film. All that said, there are obviously more creative and clever jokes than just repeating a horrible word over and over.

Then you have two (ironically white) actors that could give any girl the vapours—even when they’re diabolically evil: DiCaprio and Waltz. Every scene these two are in is served on a silver platter, and just when you think everything is wonderful, the two then start sharing scenes, and all hell breaks loose.

But then we have the not so fantastic Mr. Foxx, who while great in this film, serves as something of a Luke Skywalker to Waltz and DiCaprio’s far more memorable Han Solo and Vader. Django’s (and on that note, Django Unchained’s) deal is that he is still technically the “star” of the film, top billing and all, so understandably he ends up being the only one with a well-developed arc. (Why is there a German man hanging around the Old West? Who cares? He’s charming as all hell!) And thus we have another problem: Foxx is wonderful on screen, but he’s just no competition for DiCaprio and Waltz’s constant charm-offs.

Nonetheless, whether it’s an intricate speech that the scene surrounds or an epic gun show, Django Unchained balances it all neatly into a surprisingly tight package. Now if you haven’t seen it yet, get the hell out of here and go watch it!