With the help of his mentor, a slave-turned-bounty hunter sets out to rescue his wife from a brutal Mississippi plantation owner.
What I thought of it:
I loved Tarantino’s earlier films (Reservoir Dogs; Pulp Fiction; From Dusk Till Dawn), but to my mind, he pretty quickly went off the boil and I hated most of the stuff that came after (Jackie Brown; Kill Bill Vol 1 & 2), so when I first heard about Django Unchained, I was a little dubious as to how it would turn out.
I needn’t have worried.
This has equal parts drama, action and dark humour, coupled with an excellent cast who all turn in star performances. Some of them are almost completely unrecognisable (I did a big double take at Don Johnson’s cameo!), but all are absolutely perfect.
This being Tarantino, there’s a lot of blood. A lot! All over the place. Red mist, splurges, splashes, you name it, we’ve got it, and all the accompanying gore you might (or might not) expect, often to quite humourous effect, but always thrilling. The plot is well thought out and progresses at an exhilarating pace. We are presented with 165 minutes that are jam-packed with plot that doesn’t let up for a second – The Hobbit was four minutes longer and I felt like I got way more film from Django Unchained!
It has been nominated for five Academy Awards – Motion Picture, Supporting Actor (Christopher Waltz), Original Screenplay, Cinematography and Sound Editing. I feel pretty certain it could comfortably walk away with Cinematography, possibly Sound Editing too, but being up against big hitters such as Lincoln, which may be seen as more solidly Oscar-worthy material, may be its downfall in other categories. That would be a shame, because Django Unchained is far more enjoyable than some other “worthy” films and deserves recognition on so many fronts.
Tarantino is back on form – this is his best movie yet and he’ll have a hard time topping it!