December 26, 2012

'Django Unchained' is Off the Hook

I was in a sold-out theater on Christmas Day to see 'Django Unchained', starring Jamie Foxx, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson and Leonardo DiCaprio. Let me just say that this was the best movie that I've seen in many, many years. The diverse crowd in the theater loved it ... we cheered, we laughed and we were shocked. The movie brings it all together in subtle and not-so-subtle ways!

I straight-up recommend this movie for all 'villagers'. It is worth paying retail at the theater instead of waiting to see it on Netflix or Red Box.

As an aside ... I think that Spike Lee is wrong. There is no need to boycott this flick. I'm told that the N-Word is used over 110 times. I was concerned about that factoid before I saw the movie. During and after the movie it dawned on me that if the N-Word was used at all ... it was used appropriately. You simply didn't think that the word was used gratuitously. The bigger concern may have been the graphic violence in the movie. In any case the dialogue in the script was appropriate for the time and place in history.

Samuel L. Jackson had some of the best lines in the movie. Like his role in 'Pulp Fiction' ... he wasn't on the screen very much, but his facial expressions and his talking parts were truly memorable and OUTSTANDING!  He reminded me of the grumpy old Black man in the cartoon series, 'Boondocks'.

Kerry Washington is probably my favorite actress nowadays.  She is making her mark in a current television series called, 'Scandal'.   She has a cameo appearance in 'Django' ... and she plays it well.   My only caution to Kerry is to be careful not to take on the same roles that LisaGay Hamilton used to play for most of the past decade.  Y'all know what I'm talking about...

Anytime you can get Jamie, Kerry, Samuel and Leo in a movie together ... it is bound to be great! Go see the movie and tell me what you think!


Anna Renee said...

Hi Villager! I watched a video Anson Asaka at New Possibilities did, reviewing the movie. He said the movie itself was fantastic! 3 hours of off the hook action! But then he said the underlying stuff was jacked up. 110 times? Kerry not having a speaking part? It was troubling to him.

Renee said...

I have been thinking about this movie. I am not a fan of Tarrantino to say the least largely because of his foundness for saying the N Word. As far as Spike is concerned, any movie dealing with a Black protagonist or African American history must be made by him preferably or another Black person.

Unknown said...

Anna - Movie was fantastic is probably the key point. I agree that Kerry's part was more of a cameo than it was a real part ... but, I guess sister is simply trying to get some credibility on the 'big screen' since she is primarily known as a 'television' star.

re: 110 utterances of the N-Word --> As I shared in the blog post, I think that the usage was correct from perspective of the times. I didn't even notice them because they were natural and not offensive from a cinematic point of view. Tarrantino definitely didn't use the N-Word for shock value ... it was more in synch with the theme of the movie.

Renee - Things would definitely be cool if Spike or other Black directors were green-lighted more often. But, they aren't. Tarrantino can get green-lighted and he can get white butts in the movie theater seats. I'll give you something to consider. Jamie Foxx's character is a straight-up African American HERO and FAMILY-ORIENTED man in a major motion picture. He was shown as a talented brother with ability to rise about his circumstances to save his family. Do we see that type of character in other movies?

Reggie said...

I'm always curious as to why someone would suggest we boycott any movie they haven't seen.

I've got mad love for Spike Lee and all.....but when I saw what he said I did kinda pick up on the hater vibe. I don't know why.

If you say it's good, then I'll go check it out. I intended to see it anyway....but you just put the icing on the cake for me.

Thanks for the endorsement.

Unknown said...

Reggie - I look forward to your opinion on the movie after you have a chance to see it!

Daij said...

I had planned on not seeing it but I've read too many positive reviews from bloggers that I respect that will see it this coming weekend.

Reggie said...

I was so intrigued, that I actually went to see it yesterday afternoon. I would encourage everyone to go out and see it.

In short, it's a very very good movie.

I think that Tarantino has another classic on his hands. I laughed throughout the movie....probably even when I wasn't supposed to as well. It's well done and the acting particularly by Foxx, Samuel Jackson (as Uncle Ruckus) and I've never seen a film where DiCaprio did better work. Jackson and DiCaprio were awesome.

I'm used to seeing Jaime Foxx clown in a role and Samuel Jackson as well, but I will say again that Leonardo DiCaprio actually looked like he was having fun. I'll bet that it was a fun movie to make.

One of the things that I did like about the movie was the graphic depiction of slavery. Tarantino didn't sugarcoat it. This isn't an afternoon school special. Some of the images are disturbing. Most of the violence is gratuitious.

Oh and for some reason, I'd forgotten just how beautiful Kerry Washington is......though I don't know how I forgot that.

The subject matter itself is disturbing, but our history is disturbing and the movie is based on that history....with just a little Hollywood magic thrown in for good measure.

Fuck Spike Lee, he's wrong about this one.

Unknown said...

Reggie - Thanx for sharing your insights and review. I think that Jackson and DiCaprio may each get Academy Award nominations for their performance in this flick.

Unknown said...

Daij - We look forward to hearing your thoughts about the movie after you see it.

Political Season said...

I watched the film yesterday. I disagree with Spike's point of view and since he has not actually seen the film, its an uninformed opinion. We would dismiss someone criticizing one of his films without having seen it, why does he get to do that here?

It's thought provoking, its entertaining and it gives us an opportunity to think and reflect on the subject of slavery, something so painful, many of us don't, black or white. I wrote my own review, which Villager has reposted to his facebook page and you can check it out there.

Unknown said...

All - This is the first movie in many moons that has engendered such dialogue. It would be great to have more of these type of movies in the future. I look forward to watching Django again ... although I will likely wait for it to come to Netflix to see again!